CPSO's Market Surveillance Finds Over 2,900 Unregistered Household Appliances Sold Online
MR No.: 109/21
Singapore, Friday, 17 December 2021
1. This year, the Consumer Product Safety Office (CPSO)1 found more than 2,900 household appliances – classified as Controlled Goods2 – sold on major e-commerce platforms like Amazon, Carousell, Ezbuy, Lazada, Qoo10 and Shopee in Singapore that were not registered with the CPSO or did not bear a valid SAFETY Mark in accordance with regulatory requirements. These were a result of the CPSO’s market surveillance efforts and investigations of consumer complaints received between January to November 2021.
2. The top five categories of unregistered household appliances sold online, which did not meet regulatory requirements, were AC adaptors, portable socket outlets, cooking appliances (such as toasters, grills and hotplates), hair care appliances (such as hair dryers), and liquid heating appliances (such as kettles and hot water dispensers).
3. Working with the CPSO, the e-commerce platforms have since delisted the unregistered household appliances3. The CPSO has also issued fines or warnings to sellers of these products. Sellers found guilty of selling unregistered controlled goods are liable upon conviction, to a fine not exceeding S$10,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or both.
Safety considerations when buying products online
4. With the rise in e-commerce and consumer shift to online shopping, product safety for online purchases has become an increasingly important issue to be addressed. Consumers can play their part by using products that meet safety requirements, and adopt the following good practices when purchasing household appliances online.
Check product listing: Listings on online marketplaces may show limited product angles and description. When in doubt, consumers should contact the sellers for more details on the product features, functionality and safety requirements (including whether it bears a SAFETY Mark).
Check product safety: Consumer can check the validity of the SAFETY Mark for a product by visiting the Consumer Product Safety and Accuracy Plus (CPSA+) System to view the Register of Registered Controlled Goods. They can also check if a safety alert has been issued for a product by visiting CPSO’s Product Safety Alerts and Recalls page and to determine whether products have previously been recalled by the manufacturer or had its sale ceased by regulatory bodies over safety issues.
Check seller reliability: Consumers can check past buyers’ feedback, seller ratings and independent product reviews to ensure no safety hazards or reliability issues have been reported for the product that they intend to purchase. They should also choose a seller that provides full product warranty by the manufacturer, customer service support and a return or exchange policy.
Check product compatibility for local use: For online purchases of electrical appliances, technical specifications printed on the packaging may not be shown on the product page. Consumer should always contact the seller to verify the details and ensure that it comes with plugs and voltages4 that are suitable for use locally.
5. Said Ms Beatrice Wong, Director of CPSO, “Amid the year-end shopping season, we urge consumers to stay vigilant and conduct due checks on products and sellers when shopping online. This is particularly important when buying household appliances classified as controlled goods, as those that do not meet the safety requirements can pose fire, mechanical and electrical hazards. Consumers should always look out for the SAFETY Mark, which helps them identify products that meet safety requirements and are suitable for local use. These good practices will go a long way towards keeping yourself, your friends, and your family safe”.
6. Should consumers encounter any product safety-related issues for online purchases of household appliances, they may lodge a report to the CPSO at 6898 1800 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
1 The CPSO is overseen by Enterprise Singapore.
2 For full listing of the 33 categories of Controlled Goods under the Consumer Protection (Safety Requirements) Regulations (CPSR), click here.
3 For more information on the e-commerce platforms’ efforts to safeguard consumer product safety, please see Annex A.
4 Singapore’s standard electricity supply is 230 volts AC with a frequency of 50 hertz (230V/50Hz).
For media queries, please contact:
Assistant Business Partner
M : +65 9817 7401
E : Jocelyn_TAN@enterprisesg.gov.sg