CONSUMER ALERT: Dangers of buying knock-off products

Published: Dec. 23, 2021 at 10:36 AM CST
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Knock-off products may look like a great deal online, but they could be dangerous.

The National Crime Prevention Council has an anti-counterfeiting campaign called “Go For Real.” It focuses on young shoppers.

“Teenagers don’t want to be fooled. The last thing a teenager wants to do is to have a friend tell them, ‘Hey, those aren’t real Nike sneakers. You got ripped off.’ No teenager wants to hear that from their friends,” says Paul Delponte, Executive Director, National Crime Prevention Council.

Delponte say counterfeiters cut corners on websites, labels and logos. Typos are a tipoff to a fake.

“Electronic products, if they’re not tested and have UL labels on them, that’s another way to tell it’s fake,” says Delponte. “A tablet, a game controller with faulty electronics can catch on fire. Ear buds could damage your hearing. There are a lot of health risks to buying fake.”

Delponte says there are growing concerns about knock-off cosmetics.

“Some of these ingredients contained arsenic, animal feces, rat hair, human urine, because they’re manufactured in knock-off facilities overseas that aren’t controlled by the FDA, that don’t meet consumer protection standards that people have fought hard for over the years to keep our products safe,” says Delponte.

And there’s a bigger issue.

“Part of the danger of buying a fake or counterfeit product is often times it’s being used to fund illegal international terrorism, drug cartels. By buying fake products, you’re fueling a dangerous criminal enterprise,” says Delponte.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Go for Real campaign.

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