Scammers are spoofing news sites to promote health products

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:

They build spoofed websites that look like the news sites that we know and trust. The sites aren’t real news sites and the endorsements featured on the sites, often from figures like Stephen Hawking, Anderson Cooper and others, are fake. Representatives from Hawking and Cooper have confirmed that neither has endorsed any “brain booster” products.

The spoofed news sites link you to the sales page for the product, which allows you to place an order with a credit or debit card. The scammers may claim that the pills are proven to work — that you’ll experience an increase in concentration and memory recall by large percentages, but they lack evidence to support their claims. It’s a scam.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) advises that you talk to your doctor to get the facts about health products before purchasing.

If you already paid money to a scammer with a credit or debit card, you may still be able to get your money back.

  • Call the card company immediately using the phone number found on your monthly statement
  • Alert them to the fraudulent charge right away
  • Ask if you are still eligible to get your money back
  • Ask if you should get a new card with a new number to prevent more fraudulent charges

For more tips, stay connected by subscribing to FTC alerts. And report scams to the FTC.

Tagged with: brain health, scam
Blog Topics: 
Health & Fitness


Thank you for this information, many seniors will be taken advantage by them & unfortunately your information won't be read by these seniors.

E mails I send to Phone calls. If I do not reconize the phone I do not answer. Yes, I am on the DO Not Call List. If the call is important, they will leave a number and a message. I have had solicitors who left voice messages before. I just let the phone ring. After a week all the solicitors call began to stop and I get only 1 or 2 calls a month.

Thank you. Those of us who are concerned about memory loss may very well fall for this.

Thanks informative

My wife says I can certainly use a "Brain Booster" but it probably would no work anyway.
I do appreciate your email alerts, Thanks...Terry

Thank God I did not fall for this.Alert to those who have please take heed to this alert and always google the company b4 purchasing.

I received a Microsoft warnjping about a virus on my computer with instructions to call a certain number. I also was told if I close down my computer that they would shut down my computer. I checked in with Microsoft and found out that it was a scam.

Thank you

Great comment and alert. I hope the FTC will take legal action.

I've been receiving telephone calls from someone who says he works for Microsoft and needs access to my computer. I tell him that I fell for his scheme over a year ago and bought what I was told was a year's subscription for "protection" for the computer. That wasn't the case. I changed credit card numbers, and now hang up on him.

Ah ha! The REAL source of fake news and alternative facts.

How do I send a copy of letter for home employment. I just received. I am really in need of making extra legal employment. Not sure 10% is my pay

If this were done thru the mails, it would be a crime. So, why isn't it a crime to do it thru the Internet?


I'm sorry, we can't send email back to people. You can call the FTC and report what happened, but the FTC can't make phone calls for you. If you need local help, you could call your police department, or call the attorney general's office in your state.

This page lists the attorney generals in every state. You can find the number for your attorney general's office and call them for help. Some TV stations help people with consumer problems. This page lists TV stations that help.

Don't forget those seniors with companion pets. I have seen fish oil laced with marine biodiesel being offered for sale to those seniors whose only companion is a beloved dog or cat.

I play samurai-Sudoku everyday. I guess that help to keep your brain sharp.

Thank sir for report and security program of customer group llc

Has it happened to you yet ? Or are you Safe garing to keeping it so incase They are doing it with our #s? Let me know please. Ok.

I want to know about these Stupid Robots that call about Medicare. Since I am turning 65 in June they call and say ""I hear your going to have a birthday soon and your going to be able to begin Medicare. Have you heard about the Governments new Medicare Insurance" Well while their talking I'm trying to interrupt them and tell me I'm not interested but they keep on talking like I'm not even there. What can I do about them, should I copy all the numbers that call all day long and report them to you or what?

Go to and sign up for the service. It's free, and you won't get any more of those annoying calls. Legitimate robo calls, from your doctor, etc. will get through. I've had it for over a year, and it works great. The robo calls ring once, then get dumped so that you never have to answer. Good luck!

In the past week I have received an offer by phone for a free all inclusive night at any Hyatt hotel and, just today, an offer sent by Sprint for America Airlines AAdvantage miles. I also received the Brainbooster pills. Hard to tell what is real. Don't open anything. Check with company first an ask questions. Delete the offer then empty your trash.

Isn't there a way to eliminate or at least fine these people who put false items on the internet in the form of legitimate ads?

I consider all unsolicited emails (that I don't have a business relationship with writer) as SPAM and all unsolicited phone calls as scams. Also any Internet site that asks for shipping cost paid by me for a "free trial" is also a scam; they are asking me to pay for being added to their email sucker list.

A few years before I discovered this FTC site I got sucked into a "free trial" for teeth whitening, and almost sucked into a sale of medicine I take.

To ChattyLinda64 above: the Medicare people are scammers, and not worth communicating with. A better option is to get all your Medicare info from the US government Medicare site, which can be found from "". I too am a senior and already have Medicare.

In the past I usually didn't pay much attention to the web site of news articles I read, but now that's very important to me. This also goes for what I'm willing to believe on YouTube.

The stories about the recent problems at the Oroville Dam are a great example of how people twist the news; from damaged spillway (truth), to imminent dam failure (lies).

What will I say I haven’t any word to say? Just say one word incredible!

yesterday on 3/03/2017 I was the victim of a scam/fraud. Grrr! They go by different names...PCtechie, universal Driver update program, They crash your computer with a warning stating that your computer is compromised and all my info was being stolen. It stated that if you exit this warning and turn off your computer, my computer will crash and become unusable. I called the 1-800-4671909. Yes, the hacked me!

I have been trying to find someone to refinancemy home for two years and because I don't have the best credit know one will help me.they all say they can and won't and all Iwantis my home with a lower payment.

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