Consumer protectionAnnual report 2021: Federal Network Agency removes large number of unauthorized products from the market

Today, the German Federal Network Agency published market surveillance data for prohibited products for the year 2021.

Overall, the Federal Network Agency had 23 million unauthorized products blocked that might have caused radio interference or had significant formal defects, among other things. This is an increase of 15 percent compared to the previous year 2020.

These are further insights on non-compliant products identified in online and retail trade, together with customs or during test purchases:

  • Online retail: Online market surveillance identified 1,936 non-compliant listings for a total of 21.4 million products.
  • Wireless headphones were the most conspicuous type of device, accounting for more than 7.7 million units. In addition to formal defects such as missing operating instructions in German or faulty technical documentation, numerous headphones used radio frequencies that are, however, reserved for safety-relevant services such as the police or fire department and are therefore prohibited.
  • In addition, low-priced measuring devices (3.7 million units) and remote-controlled flying drones (3.3 million units) were withdrawn from circulation due to missing CE markings or contact details of the responsible economic operator.
  • Retail: 23 sales bans and 1,059 requests for product defect rectification were issued for the 3,554 types of devices inspected from the German retail sector. This affected more than one million products, including conspicuous LED lighting devices and power supply units that caused malfunctions.
  • Customs: Due to clear defects, the Federal Network Agency did not release 91 percent of the 6,500 consignments of goods reported by Customs for the German market. This affected around 320,000 products.
  • Test purchases: A total of 61 test purchases were made to check the conformity of devices offered on the Internet. Products identified as non-compliant were followed by market-restricting measures.

Jochen Homann, President of the Federal Network Agency, commented: "The Federal Network Agency is taking consistent action against non-compliant products and preventing them from continuing to be offered on the German market. In this way, the Federal Network Agency makes an important contribution to consumer protection. We inform consumers what they should look out for especially when ordering electronic products online."

Source: Federal Network Agency

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