Feb 28, 2011
We have reported several times recently about the growing prevalence of counterfeit cable in the North American market. Late last year Underwriters Laboratories instituted the requirement for holographic labels on boxes of cable that bear the UL logo. The Communications Cable and Connectivity Association has undertaken efforts to raise awareness of counterfeits in the market, as part of the association's effort to minimize the amount of counterfeit product that gets installed in networks.
While these efforts continue, counterfeit cable also continues to find its way into the hands of cabling contractors. Jim Hayes heads up VDV Works, a training and consulting company. Hayes also has been the longtime head of The Fiber Optic Association. On February 25, Hayes got ahold of a length of counterfeit cable that took even him, with his decades of experience in structured cabling, by surprise.
UL issues warning about Cat 5e patch cables
Apr 9, 2012
Those in the habit of buying their Category 5e patch cords at Big Lots might want to be careful the next time they're shopping. In late March Underwriters Laboratories (UL) issued a public warning about the unauthorized use of its mark on Category 5e patch cables, as well as USB 2.0 cables, known to be sold at Big Lots.
The products are sold under the brand name TriQuest; the Cat 5e model number is 60-0102 and the USB 2.0 model number is 60-0302. UL reports that the manufacturer is Sela Products LLC.
The notice from UL explains that the products "bear an unauthorized UL Mark on the product packaging. The products have not been evaluated by UL to the applicable standard for safety and it is unknown if they comply with the UL safety requirements."
UL's notice also said that the Cat 5e patch cable first went into production in February 2010; there are no date codes on the packaging or product. UL says there are 95,120 units of the Cat 5e patch cable.
As the image at the bottom of this page shows, the front of the packaging bears the TriQuest brand name. The right side of the image shows the back of the product packaging, which includes the unauthorized mark - the encircled letters "UL" - on the bottom right portion of the package.
The USB 2.0 cable that is part of the same UL notice also bears the TriQuest brand name. UL says it first went into production in March 2010 and there are 124,300 units of it. The USB 2.0 cable, like the Cat 5e patch cable, does not include date codes on the product or packaging.
Sela Products did not immediately respond to our request for information.