After several unanswered emails to the Agence nationale des fréquences (ANFR), Phonegate Alert officially notified it on August 23, 2023, to find out whether it had complied with its obligation to inform European Union authorities of the non-compliance of 42 cell phone models exceeding the set Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) threshold, in accordance with what is laid down in the so-called “RED” Directive 2014/53/EU.

An obligation to inform European Union authorities

The non-compliance of mobile telephony equipment, such as the 42 phone models exceeding the set SAR threshold, triggers the application of Article 40 of the RED Directive, and in particular the obligation for the French market surveillance authority, ANFR, to comply with the following obligation:

« Where the market surveillance authorities consider that non-compliance is not restricted to their national territory, they shall inform the Commission and the other Member States of the results of the evaluation and of the actions which they have required the economic operator to take. »

For the moment, ANFR is maintaining total opacity on this subject, refusing to respond to our NGO and our partner Europeans for Safe Connections.

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Millions of dangerous smartphones in circulation in Europe

The issue is a major one, as it involves informing European consumers who do not reside in France (where measures have been adopted to put an end to non-compliance) and who unknowingly continue to use one of the forty-two models of smartphones that do not comply with the RED Directive, as they exceed the regulatory SAR threshold.

This is confirmed by European Commissioner Thierry Breton’s response to the question put by MEP Niels Fuglsang to the European Commission:

« …Any measures taken by Member States on non-compliant products have to be published in the ICSMS[6] and – if the non-compliance poses a serious risk – in the Safety Gate/RAPEX[7], allowing also the consumers to be aware of the risks. »

ANFR’s responsibility likely to be engaged

For Dr. Marc Arazi, who launched the alert in July 2016:

“In view of the risks to consumers, and if measures have not been taken by ANFR to inform the European Union authorities of the non-compliance of the forty-two disputed phones, and by this means European consumers not residing on French territory, our NGO is ready to take legal action once again to seek the liability of ANFR, and therefore of the French State on which it depends due to breach of its obligation to inform.”