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Buying a new USB cable? Avoid damaging your devices: check it’s compliant (Tip from the Helpdesk)

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The new USB-C connection is starting to be seen more often on laptops and devices – Apple’s new Macbook, some laptops from Dell and Lenovo as well as tablets and smartphones all use the faster, reversible version of USB.

But be careful when buying replacement USB-C cables – the wrong one has the potential to damage your mobile device or desktop.  Not all replacement USB-C cables are suitable for all devices.

Some retailers (e.g. but not have recently banned the sale of sub-standard USB-C cables. Amazon was not the only vendor of the faulty cables: according to the USB Implementers Forum, nearly a third of all USB-C cables are not safe for all devices.  To help keep your devices safe, important specifications for the cables have been outlined by The USB Implementers Forum (USB IF).

If you are using a cable other than the one which has come with the product itself, then it would be advisable to check your cable against this list of compliant products provided by the USB IF.

Another way of ensuring that any USB cable is safe is by looking for the USB IF symbols of compliance, shown below:

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If you have had problems with your mobile device or desktop or need help with recovering data contact us on 0207 043 7044 or