In October of 2019 I first told you that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had sued Agora Financial, LLC alleging it scammed seniors into buying books, newsletters and other publications that falsely claimed a cure for type 2 diabetes and also perpetrating a scam related to a non-existent government affiliated check program.  According to Andrew Smith, the FTC’s Director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection,  Agora, “stole money from older adults with lies about having a cure for diabetes and a way to get thousands of dollars in government checks.  One of their publications, “The Doctor’s Guide to Reversing Diabetes in 28 days” claimed to provide a cure for type 2 diabetes totally unsupported by scientific evidence.  The Doctor’s Guide sold for $249.  In addition, Agora also promoted a newsletter entitled  “Lifetime Income Report” and a book entitled “Congress’ Secret $1.17 Trillion Giveaway” that promoted a phony, non-existent government program which Agora promised would enable consumers to receive thousands of dollars.  Consumers obtaining the worthless book automatically became subscribers to the “Lifetime Income Report” for $99 per year.

Now the FTC is sending checks and PayPal refunds totaling more than two million dollars to victims of the scam.  The funds to pay for the refunds came from money recovered from Agora Financial and related defendants.  For more information about this refund program go to the tab in the middle of the Scamicide home page entitled “FTC Scam Refunds.”  It is important to note that there is never a charge for obtaining a refund through the FTC or any of its refund administrators.  Anyone who asks for such a payment is just another scammer.

TIPS

As for all health related products whether they offer a cure for diabetes or even weight loss, the truth is that you should always be wary of programs or products that promise miraculous health benefits.  Check with your physician before considering any of these programs or products.  As for weight loss products which are the source of many scams,  there are no quick fixes when it comes to weight loss and you should be wary of any product that promises you can lose tremendous amounts of weight quickly without dieting or exercise.  You should also be wary of any weight loss product that is sold exclusively either over the Internet or through mail-order advertisements. The best course of action is to ask your physician about the effectiveness of a particular weight loss product or program before you reduce your wallet in an effort to reduce your waistline.

As for “get rich quick” books and programs promising money from government programs, you should always research these books and programs thoroughly and with a skeptical eye since many of these are scams.

For those of you receiving the Scam of the day through an email, I just want to remind you that if you want to see the ever increasing list of Coronavirus scams go to the first page of the http://www.scamicide.com website and click on the tab at the top of the page that indicates “Coronavirus Scams.”  Scamicide has been cited by the New York Times as one of three top sources for information about Coronavirus related scams.

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