March 28, 2024

CHICAGO — With more Illinois residents searching for ways to avoid waiting in long lines to get tested for the coronavirus, the Federal Trade Commission is warning that there are plenty of home self-testing kits that won’t provide trustworthy results.

The federal agency issued a warning on Wednesday that fake and unauthorized home testing kits are being offered online “as opportunistic scammers” look to take advantage of the spike in new positive COVID-19 cases around the country.

The FTC said that not only do the fake tests fail to deliver legitimate test results for those who worry that they may have contracted the virus, but said they increase the risk of users unknowingly spreading COVID-19 to others, the agency said in a news release.

  • Make sure the test you’re buying is authorized by the FDA. Check the FDA’s lists of antigen diagnostic tests and molecular diagnostic tests before you buy to find the tests authorized for home use. (EUA is “emergency use authorization.”)
  • Check out a seller before you buy, especially if you’re buying from a site you don’t know. Search online for the website, company, or seller’s name plus words like “scam,” “complaint,” or “review.”
  • Compare online reviews from a wide variety of websites. You can get a good idea about a company, product, or service from reading user reviews on various retail or shopping comparison sites. Think about the source of the review. Ask yourself: Where is this review coming from? Is it from an expert…

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