Acting Director, Bureau of Consumer Protection, FTC
Welcome to National Consumer Protection Week 2017! March signals the start of Spring – a time of reassessment, growth and renewal that brings positive change. It’s also a good time to renew our commitment to helping people in our communities be savvy consumers.
Scammers will do just about anything to rip you off. They will create fake websites, use fake endorsements from public figures, lie about the effectiveness of their products, and much more.
We did some investigating and found that a number of shady companies selling “brain booster” pills are using these exact tactics to promote their products. Here’s how:
Today, checks went out to 1,367 people who bought a Mercola tanning system after January 1, 2012. Why’s that? Well, in April 2016, the FTC announced a settlement with Joseph Mercola and his companies because, according to the FTC, the ads for Mercola’s products had claims that were false or not backed by science.
Whether you’re gathering with friends for Friday night happy hour or a Super Bowl party to watch the big game, it’s important to get home safely. So wouldn’t it be great if you could transform your smartphone into a breathalyzer to make sure you were safe to drive? Well, Breathometer, Inc., claimed its breathalyzer devices could do just that, and give you the power to make smart decisions while you’re drinking.
National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW) is around the corner! The annual event – March 5-11, 2017 – is a time to help people understand their consumer rights, make well-informed decisions about money, and spot scams.
When it comes to advertising hype, we’ve heard it all. Some can be very appealing: “Shrink two sizes without dieting!” Who wouldn’t love to lose weight or shape up with no effort? Well, the problem is, that’s not how it works. Take a pass on any product that offers weight loss or fitness results without any effort. Remember, no garment, gizmo, or cream is going to make you fit and toned.
Apps can add convenience to your daily routine, keep you organized, and help you learn something new — but only if they provide accurate information. If you’re planning to use an app to monitor health conditions — like your blood pressure — talk with your doctor or health care professional first.
On your pharmacy’s shelves, mixed in with conventional over-the-counter medicines, you might find products labeled “homeopathic.” Marketers of traditional homeopathic products claim they effectively treat symptoms, but lack reliable scientific evidence to support their claims.