Better Business Bureau of Southern Arizona is warning consumers to be extremely wary of pervasive online ads offering the promise of a whiter, brighter smile. BBB has received a recent onslaught of complaints from consumers who thought they were signing up for a free trial of teeth whitening products but were repeatedly billed for products and services they didn’t want.
The ubiquitous ads for teeth whiteners can be found on popular sites such as FoxNews.com, CNN.com and ABCNews.com. The ads typically link consumers to phony blogs and fake news sites that are designed to look like impartial 3rd party endorsements of the products. The phony endorsements then direct the consumer to a main Web site that claims the product sold is “As seen on” ABC, Forbes.com, CBS News, CNN, and USA Today—and includes the logos of these news outlets.
“From the complaints we’ve received, it’s obvious that many consumers are unfortunately letting their trust in respected news outlets influence their level of trust in the products being advertised on their Web sites,” said Kim States, BBB President. “While it may be true that advertisements for the teeth whiteners were placed on major news Web sites, reporters for USA Today or CNN did not write stories (more…)