EPA Fines Logitech $261,000 for Bogus Bacteria Claims

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency slapped Logitech with a fine worth more than a quarter of a million dollars for claims the peripheral maker made about its cordless desktop MX3200 laser mouse and keyboard combo. Those peripherals are now defunct, but when they were being sold, Logitech touted their ability to protect users from nasty bacteria and microbes. That would have been fine and dandy, had Logitech tested its claims and then registered with the EPA.

"Unverified public health claims can lead people to believe they are protected from disease-causing organisms when, in fact, they are not," said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. "The EPA takes very seriously its responsibility to enforce the law against companies that make such claims for their products."

Logitech wasn't trying to pull a fast one, as the keyboard and mouse combo did contain an EPA registered pesticide called AgION silver compound, the organization said. Even still, the burden of proof falls on Logitech to show that its use of the pesticide is both capable of killing germs and bacteria, and is safe for consumers.

Logitech has since pulled bacteria-killing claims from its website and revised its product packaging. Now all that's left is to cut a check to the EPA in the amount of $261,000. Ouch.