BBB warns of baby formula scams

BBB warns of baby formula scams

By Greg Collier

Whenever there is a shortage of something, inevitably, some people will use that shortage to their own financial advantage. This can be seen in such practices as price gouging and scalping. However, in those practices, you can still get a product. Then there’s the scam where you get nothing at all.

As you may know, there has been a shortage of baby formula happening across the country. Due to supply chain issues and a massive recall of baby formula due to salmonella, store shelves have been barren of baby formula. Even government programs which are designed to assist low-income families have been struggling to supply formula to needy families. Of course, scammers never see a crisis they can’t pass up.

The Better Business Bureau has issued a nationwide warning about baby formula scams. According to the BBB, scammers are setting up fake websites and social media profiles. The scammers claim that not only do they have baby formula in stock, but they’re offering it at bargain prices. However, payments are only accepted through the usual suspects of Cash App, Venmo, and probably Zelle. Once the payment is made, the scammers block their victims on these apps, leaving the victims out of money and a hungry child to feed. Some of these websites even have pictures of what the scammers claim is their supply, but more often than not, these photos are stolen off the internet.

If you come across a website selling baby formula, research before you buy. First, do what’s called a WHOIS search on the website’s domain name. This will more than likely let you know when the site was created. You can also do a web search of the site’s name along with the terms ‘review’ or ‘scam’. That should provide you with information to let you know whether the site is legitimate or not. Unfortunately, during the current crisis, these vendors will almost assuredly be scammers.