Be wary of fraudulent flu products and emails
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Reports of swine flu have dominated recent news coverage and some scammers are taking advantage of the virus to pitch phony cures. Consumers should be wary of products that claim to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. Many of these products are sold on the Internet through illegitimate web sites. Products can come in many forms, including supplements, supposed drugs, food, or equipment. None of these products will prevent the flu or provide effective treatment for it.
Consumers should also beware of unsolicited emails containing a subject line related to the swine flu. These emails may contain a link or attachment that could take the user to a phishing site or expose their computer to a virus. If you receive an email like this, you should forward it to the Federal Trade Commission at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact your health care provider if you have questions or concerns about health care products or equipment. You can also visit the FDA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site for more information on the H1N1 virus and what products the FDA has approved for use in its diagnosis and treatment.
For more tips on health products and other helpful consumer information, please visit our new website at www.ncdoj.gov. To file a complaint about a questionable health product, contact Attorney General Roy Cooper’s Consumer Protection office at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or visit www.ncdoj.gov.