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  • Writer's pictureAccess Compliance

Risks of counterfeit PPE, how to identify them, how to report them

(Shared from VPPPA Region 2​)

"Sales and production of fraudulent PPE – especially N95 and KN95 masks – have increased since December 2019 as people took advantage of the pandemic to make some money. Many agencies and departments are having problems getting PPE and have to source from unknown sellers. It’s important to be able to identify fraudulent, counterfeit or unapproved products in order to ensure the safety of your personnel.

A new fact sheet from the Technical Research, Assistance Center, Information Exchange (TRACIE) provides a quick reference to help you protect your staff with safe, approved PPE and instructions on how to report sellers of counterfeit products.

Respirators for Healthcare during COVID-19: Authorized Use and Avoiding Fraudulent Products recommends the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Certified Equipment List and the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization list. These lists give you information on what types of masks or respirators are to be used under what circumstances, use of imported products and indicators of counterfeit products and vendors.

Review this guidance and consider keeping it on-hand as a reference to help ensure the safety of people in your department.


Emergency Management and Response

Information Sharing and Analysis Center


The EMR-ISAC InfoGram for July 16, 2020 contains the following articles:

1. FDA adds to the list of dangerous hand sanitizers containing methanol

2. Risks of counterfeit PPE, how to identify them, how to report them

3. FEMA releases updated public assistance guidance

4. New industrial control system security 5-year strategy released

5. Cyber Threats


The U.S. Fire Administration/EMR-ISAC does not endorse the organizations sponsoring linked websites, and does not endorse the views they express or the products/services they offer.


This InfoGram may contain copyrighted material that was not specifically authorized by the copyright owner. EMR-ISAC personnel believe this constitutes “fair use” of copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Law. If you wish to use copyrighted material contained within this document for your own purposes that go beyond “fair use,” you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


DHS and the FBI encourage recipients of this document to report information concerning suspicious or criminal activity to the local FBI office and also the State or Major Urban Area Fusion Center. FBI phone numbers can be found online at Fusion Center information can be seen at

For information specifically affecting the private sector critical infrastructure, contact the CISA Integrated Operations Coordination Center (CIOCC) at 202-282-9201 or at

When available, each report submitted should include the date, time, location, type of activity, number of people, equipment type used for the activity, the name of the name of submitting person and organization, and a designated point of contact.


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