Attorney, FTC, Division of Consumer & Business Education
The best things in life are free … or are they? Not when a “free” trial ends up costing you money. That’s what happened to many people who signed up for “free” samples from NutraClick, according to the FTC’s latest case.
To promote Contact Lens Health Week, the FTC will be a guest on a live Twitter chat hosted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The chat is scheduled for Monday, August 22 at NoonEastern.
Mosquitoes are in the news — and in popular vacation spots. If you’re worried about the Zika virus or other mosquito-borne diseases, you’ll find all sorts of products — including wristbands, stickers, and patches — that say they’ll repel mosquitos that carry Zika. But do they really work? Are you and your family as protected as they claim?
Maybe not. The FTC is concerned that some products don’t work as advertised. That’s why the FTC sent warning letters to 10 companies selling these products, urging them to remove any health claims that aren’t backed by scientific evidence — especially claims about preventing Zika and other mosquito-borne diseases.
So how can you be sure you’re buying an insect repellent that works as promised?
Hundreds of thousands of people who bought Kevin Trudeau’s book “The Weight Loss Cure ‘They’ Don’t Want You to Know About” after watching his deceptive infomercials will get money back, thanks to the FTC.
Do you ever shop online for health products, like dietary supplements? Maybe you’ve seen various seals and certificates on sites you visit — showing that a site is secure, or that products on the site have been tested and evaluated. You’d think you could trust those seals and certificates — but unfortunately, that’s not always the case.
The FTC recently announced a settlement with SmartClick Media, a company that sold deceptive “Doctor Trusted” health seals to over 800 websites.
An email from a friend urges you to try new weight-loss pills. There’s a link to an article about a celebrity’s amazing results with the pills, and the article’s author says he even tried this miracle product himself.
With all these trusted sources, why wouldn’t you give it a try?
What if you could substantially improve your school grades, standardized test scores, athletic performance, and future earning abilities? You might be interested, right?
That’s just what ads from LearningRx Franchise Corporation, the company that runs a network of more than 80 learning centers, promised its “brain training” programs could do. Some ads went further, claiming the programs are clinically proven to help permanently overcome the symptoms of ADHD, autism, age-related cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s disease, strokes, and traumatic brain injuries. Customers often spent thousands of dollars for the company’s programs, which could take months to complete.
But before you get on the brain train, know this: These claims are unproven, according to an FTC complaint. Learning Rx has agreed to settle the FTC's charges.
The FTC’s Eyeglass Rule makes it easier to comparison shop – which can help you save money. The Rule gives you the right to get your prescription from your eye doctor – whether you ask for it or not – at no extra charge. You can use the prescription to buy eyeglasses wherever they are sold – from an eye doctor, from a store, or online. Cost and quality can vary a lot from seller to seller, so it pays to shop around for the best deal.
Attorney, Division of Consumer & Business Education, FTC
If you’re easing out of your winter cocoon and planning to slip into a tanning bed for a bronzing, consider the poor moth drawn to a flame: it’s headed for trouble. Experts agree that ultraviolet (UV) radiation from indoor tanning devices damages the skin and increases your risk of cancer.
In its ads, tanning device seller Mercola promised its tanning beds, booths, and lamps were “safe,” would “slash your risk of cancer,” and emitted a red light that could reverse the signs of aging. Mercola’s ads also claimed the FDA endorsed indoor tanning as safe. Not so, says the FTC, which announced that Joseph Mercola and his companies, Mercola.com, LLC, and Mercola.com Health Resources, LLC, will refund up to $5.3 million to customers under a settlement with the agency.