Fake COVID-19 Tests Proliferate as Demand for At-Home Kits Spikes

Pile of COVID-19 testsPile of COVID-19 tests
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The Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Drug Administration have both issued warnings about fraudulent test kits, providing lists and suggestions for consumers to safely make purchases.

The Federal Trade Commission issued an alert on Tuesday to warn consumers about the presence of fake at-home COVID-19 kits being sold.

The Omicron variant accounts for a majority of the new coronavirus cases, leading to increased retail kit prices and many store options being sold out. 

“...fake and unauthorized at-home testing kits are popping up online as opportunistic scammers take advantage of the spike in demand,” the commission wrote in their alert.

The FDA has provided lists of antigen diagnostic tests and molecular diagnostic tests so you can check whether or not a kit you are considering purchasing has been backed by the FDA.

To ensure your testing experience is safe, both the FTA and the FDA suggested doing research on the company the kits come from, using a credit card to make the purchase for the ability to dispute the order if an issue arises, or making an appointment with your doctor for a test. 

“Using these fake products isn’t just a waste of money, it increases your risk of unknowingly spreading COVID-19 or not getting the appropriate treatment,” the FTC alert stated.

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