ICFE eNEWS #16-30 - August 30th 2016
Penn Corner August 2016 - Update from the Federal Trade Commission
FTC Says Mars Dog Food Ads Made Unsupported Health Claims
Mars Petcare US settled FTC charges that it made unfounded
advertising claims about its dog food. The ads said a study
showed that dogs eating Eukanuba dog food could live up to 30
percent longer. But the FTC says the study showed no difference
between Labradors that ate Eukanuba and the general Lab
population. The settlement orders Mars Petcare to stop making
health claims without backing them with scientific proof.
"Two-thirds of all Americans have pets at home, and they
spend billions of dollars to ensure that their pets are healthy
and well-fed... Pet owners count on ads to be truthful and not
to misrepresent health-related benefits."
- Jessica Rich,
Director, FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection
Company from Selling Health-Related Products
A federal judge
ordered Health Care Association, Inc. (PIHC) and its owner to
stop selling health products and stop telemarketing following
2014 FTC charges that the company lied when it sold medical
discount cards. The FTC said the company targeted Spanish
speakers and others seeking health insurance and tricked them
into buying worthless medical discount cards. According to the
FTC complaint, PIHC told people that its cards covered doctor
and emergency room visits. But after spending up to hundreds
dollars for the cards, people found they were worthless, the FTC
FTC Warns Companies About Zika Protection Claims
The FTC sent warning letters to 10 companies selling products
claiming to repel or otherwise protect people from the Zika
virus and other mosquito-borne diseases. The letters urged the
companies to remove from marketing messages any health claims
that aren't backed by scientific evidence. The letters also
asked recipients to report back to the FTC, detailing the
specific actions taken to remove or change potentially false,
misleading, or unsupported claims.
Actions Thwart Competitive Pricing, FTC Says
The FTC sued
1-800 Contacts for unlawfully orchestrating a web of
anticompetitive agreements with other online contact lens
sellers, causing some consumers to pay higher retail prices for
contact lenses. According to the FTC, agreements between 1-800
Contacts and at least 14 of its rivals eliminated competition in
auctions to place ads on the search results page generated by
search engines such as Google and Bing. The FTC complaint
alleges that these bidding agreements unreasonably restrain
price competition in online search auctions, and restrict
truthful and non-misleading advertising to consumers,
constituting an unfair method of competition in violation of
federal law. An administrative trial on the charges is set for
The FTC Reminds VW and Audi Owners About
Their Buyback Rights
Volkswagen will provide up to $10
billion to owners and lessees of VW and Audi 2.0 liter diesel
cars as part of its settlement with the FTC. VW will buy back
affected cars for thousands of dollars more than their current
replacement value. People who own one of these cars should visit
VWCourtSettlement.com to find out how much they can get through
the buyback program, before they consider what may sound like a
good offer from a potential buyer.
New Resources for
People Reentering Society
The FTC has resources for people
reentering society after incarceration. At the FTC's new Just
for You: Reentry and Corrections page, people can learn about
budgeting, finding a place to live, buying a car, managing money
and credit, employment, background checks and more.
$4 Million in Full Refunds for People Who Bought
Fake Auto Warranties. The FTC mailed 5,970 full refund checks
totaling more than $4 million on July 19 to people who were
tricked into paying thousands of dollars for bogus "extended
auto warranties" after allegedly being bombarded with robocalls
by The Dolce Group Worldwide LLC.
FTC Persistence Leads
to Refunds. More than 321,982 checks totaling nearly $9.7
million went out to victims of a credit card billing scam. The
FTC sued J.K. Publications in 1999 for allegedly operating a
scam that made unauthorized charges on people's credit and debit
cards for supposed Internet services. The defendants moved
millions of their ill-gotten gains offshore, making it difficult
to locate and seize the money.
If you get a refund check
from the FTC, deposit or cash it within 60 days of the mailing
date. The FTC never requires consumers to pay money or to
provide account information before refund checks can be cashed.
Want information about the FTC's refund program? Visit
IN OTHER NEWS:
Month of the Military
FTC Extends Comment Period for Public Input On
Proposed Changes to the Fuel Economy Guide
FTC to Host
FinTech Forum on Crowdfunding and Peer-to-Peer Payments on Oct.
Don't buy into the hype of
miracle health products. Find out how to spot bogus claims.
Keep your business to yourself. Learn
about protecting your #personalinformation.
If you own or lease a 2.0-liter
diesel #Volkswagen or #Audi, get all the facts about the
#VWsettlement & #VWbuyback.