Press release

IET warns of the dangers of using counterfeit regulations

02 December 2013

The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) has alerted the electrical industry  to the dangers of using counterfeit copies of key publications like the IET Wiring Regulations BS 7671:2008(2011). This announcement comes following the seizure in Dover by Kent Trading Standards of a consignment of 845 counterfeit copies of the IET Wiring Regulations BS 7671:2008(2011) which was intercepted by staff from the UK Border Agency as it made its way to the UK from Latvia.

Based on the retail price of legitimate copies of the publication, this seizure was worth in the region of £67,000 according to Kent County Council Trading Standards, which has been working closely with the UK Border Agency to investigate the incident. As the authority on electrical standards, the IET has issued a warning to the industry to ensure that copies of key publications like the IET Wiring Regulations BS 7671:2008(2011) are purchased from reputable sources or directly from the IET through its website www.theiet.org/electrical

In addition, the IET has called on the members of the electrical industry to get in touch (books@theiet.org) if they believe they have purchased a fake copy of the regulations in order to help the organisation find out where counterfeit copies of key publications are being sold.

The organisation has also warned that counterfeit copies of key industry publications – IET Guidance Note 3 Inspection and Testing and the IET On-Site Guide are being sold and have the potential to cause harm to individuals as the result of false or incomplete information being contained within them.

Mark Coles, Technical Regulations Manager at the IET, said: “The IET was immediately alerted by trading standards officers when a consignment of 845 counterfeit copies of BS 7671:2008(2011) was discovered by the UK Border Agency in Dover. An illegal shipment of this size confirms that the counterfeiting of electrical standards publications is becoming a source of profit for criminals. With this in mind, we will be doing all we can to make it more difficult to counterfeit our books and other knowledge resources.     

“The IET is a charity that prides itself on reinvesting profits into developing new publications and disseminating vital industry information. Buyers may think they are getting a bargain by purchasing a counterfeit copy of an IET publication, however, in such cases where pages are missing or printed information has been corrupted, the picture is not complete which could lead to errors and dangerous practices. In short, producing and purchasing of fake publications is compromising the safety of the electrical industry and potentially putting people at risk of fire, serious injury or even death. Please make sure you follow the IET's advice and buy your copy of the IET Wiring Regulations BS 7671:2008(2011) and other electrical standards publications from reputable retailers.”

Mark Rolfe, Kent County Council Trading Standards Manager, said:  “This is an unusual demonstration that criminals will counterfeit anything to make illegal profit. These books are a vital resource for legitimate electrical contractors who rely on them to make sure the work they do in our homes and workplaces is safe. A legitimate contractor would have no way of knowing whether these fakes contain complete and correct information for them to rely on. ”

Purchasers are being urged to buy only through reputable sources such as the IET website.  If in doubt email books@theiet.org

Media enquiries to:

Hannah Kellett
External Communications Manager

Tel: +44 (0)1438 767336
Mob: +44 (0)7738 602426
Email: HKellett@theiet.org

Notes to editors:

  • Interview opportunities are available with IET spokespeople from a broad range of engineering and technology disciplines including cyber-security, energy, engineering skills, innovation, manufacturing, technology, transport and women in engineering.
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