The Federal Trade Commission announced today 11 law enforcement actions taken against firms deceptively advertising bogus cancer cures. The companies have been charged with making unsupported claims that their products have treated or cured various cancers, and some were charged with falsely stating that they had clinical or scientific proof of their products’ efficacy. The FTC’s Director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection stated that, “There is no credible scientific evidence that any of the products marketed by these companies can prevent, cure or treat cancer of any kind.”
Of the 11 complaints, six were resolved by proposed settlements with the remainder to be litigated by the FTC. The companies will all be required to notify consumers that there is little to no scientific evidence demonstrating the efficacy of the products to treat or cure cancer. The complaints arose out of a year-long effort by the FTC, the FDA, and a corresponding Canadian agency in which 112 websites were targeted. Of those, over 30% responded to the governmental warnings and closed their websites or altered the fraudulent claims. Warning letters were then sent to 23 companies.
To identify the companies and products targeted, follow the links below.
The FTC also announced that it is offering a website to help the public identify bogus cancer cures–www.ftc.gov/curious
There can be little that is lower on the scale of human decency than taking advantage of a person struggling with cancer. The FTC and the FDA should be applauded for their efforts to rein in this industry.