Utah company Xlear sued by FTC for false COVID-19 claims
SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah company, Xlear, has been sued by the Federal Trade Commission over false claims involving COVID-19.
The FTC said that Xlear, out of American Fork, made false claims when selling saline nasal sprays. Specifically, the company claims the sprays were an effective way to prevent and treat the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.
The claims reportedly violate the COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act.
“Companies can’t make unsupported health claims, no matter what form a product takes or what it supposedly prevents or treats,” said Samuel Levine, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
“That’s the lesson of this case and many others like it, and it’s why people should continue to rely on medical professionals over ads.”
Xlear sued for claims made on web, podcasts, TV
Xlear’s nasal products were marketed on websites and social media platforms. The company’s ads also appeared on podcasts and local television news, the FTC reports. The products are also sold online and through multiple retailers including CVS and Walgreens.
Claiming that the spray was an effective solution to the pandemic, the ads said nasal sprays provided “four hours of protection against infection from the coronavirus.”
The FTC said there are no clinical trials to support claims made by Xlear about the efficacy of their nasal products against COVID-19. Despite being warned in July 2020, the company continued to make the claims about their products.
The lawsuit claims that the company promised to remove the false claims from its website, but then continued to make them.
The FTC lawsuit asks a federal court for monetary penalties against Xlear. The lawsuit also seeks to prevent the company from continuing to make what the FTC calls “false and unsupported” claims.
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