Table of contents:
- Synonymous with the highest security standards
- Picture gallery
- Malfunctions, short circuits and security problems
- The history of the VDE mark
- Why product certification at all?
- Plagiarism and unsafe products in the black list
- Electricity accidents are significantly reduced
Video: 100 Years VDE Mark
2023 Author: Hannah Pearcy | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-06-01 01:49
The independent examiners of the VDE Institute test more than 100,000 devices per year in the non-profit VDE Testing and Certification Institute GmbH with headquarters in Offenbach. If the product passes the tests, it receives the VDE symbol, a triangle.
Synonymous with the highest security standards
The exams of the VDE Institute are tough. In professional circles, the VDE seal of approval is a synonym for the highest security standards. "Many of the products submitted by the manufacturers to us do not pass the entrance tests of our test engineers," reports Ansgar Hinz, CEO of the VDE and managing director of the VDE Institute. These products must be improved accordingly before they are allowed to bear the VDE mark. Many manufacturers do not first have the finished product tested, but now work with the VDE experts during the development phase in order to receive the VDE mark later. "Safety and protection of users are our top priority," added Hinz.
Picture gallery with 7 pictures
Malfunctions, short circuits and security problems
A waffle maker for 10 euros, a drill for 20 euros, the "avarice is cool" mentality of the consumer, which has been observed for several years, poses considerable security risks. In order to be able to produce cheaply, many production sites have been relocated to Asia.
“However, a large number of the goods manufactured there do not meet European safety standards. We are observing the trend with great concern that online orders from Asia in particular often fail to meet our norms and standards and can therefore lead to malfunctions, short circuits and security problems,”says Ansgar Hinz.
Be careful with products that do not have a seal of approval like the VDE triangle. First of all, the CE marking does not change anything, with which the manufacturer merely declares that his product meets the requirements of the European directives; "Avarice is cool" has to stop where users are at risk.
The history of the VDE mark
In 1920, the VDE, founded in 1893, set up a central testing facility in Berlin to monitor electrical products with the existing VDE regulations. In 1934, almost 4,000 products already bore the VDE mark. In the consumer goods sector, industry, hospitals, cars, trains and power plants, the VDE symbol accompanied the upswing, with the result that the level of safety of electrotechnical products and systems in Germany has been the highest worldwide for decades.
Why product certification at all?
With the independent testing and certification by the VDE Institute, an independent body confirms that products are state of the art. This ensures safety during use.
Today, more than 1,000 employees work for the VDE Institute, which has transformed into a system provider in the past few years, because more and more products are now networked. The experts at the VDE Institute regularly check interoperability, electromagnetic compatibility and functional safety of wireless communication connections, interfaces and network connections. “This area will continue to grow exponentially in the coming years. Because all around us is electronics that interact with each other to an ever greater extent. Checking these applications will become increasingly important in the future,”explains VDE boss Ansgar Hinz. In a smart home laboratory that was only set up a few years ago, cyber security is also being tested today, and its importance is growing rapidly.
What does CE marking actually mean?
Plagiarism and unsafe products in the black list
To protect consumers, the VDE Institute works closely with the European customs authorities and with Interpol. For example, when importing goods into the European Union, the customs authorities control the submission of a valid certificate for each VDE test mark on a product. The certificates are verified online in a matter of minutes and counterfeits are tracked down more quickly. The most important instrument for raising awareness and educating consumers is the so-called “black list” of the VDE Institute. Discovered plagiarism and unsafe products are published here. Together with the online list of VDE-tested products, this is one of the most visited pages of the VDE. In order to counter abuse cases, the VDE Institute carries out its own monitoring measures such as market controls, observations and trade fair controls. In addition, the production of more than 7,000 production sites worldwide is monitored on site. The VDE Institute maintains inspection offices in 44 countries.
Electricity accidents are significantly reduced
The level of security of electrotechnical products and systems in Germany has been the highest worldwide for decades. For example, the number of people killed in electricity accidents has declined for decades from once more than 400 to now significantly less than 50 cases per year.
The majority of the VDE Institute's customers come from other European and Asian countries. The demand for the VDE safety mark is increasing, especially from China. With VDE Global Services GmbH, VDE is represented with branches in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea. In Europe, the VDE is represented in Bulgaria, Italy, France, Portugal, Spain and Turkey. Poland and Russia are the most important customers in Eastern Europe.