The Federal Trade Commission announced Thursday that it has sent letters to nearly four dozen marketers nationwide, including four based in San Diego, warning them to stop making unsubstantiated claims that their products and therapies can treat or prevent COVID-19.

The FTC identified those sent letters locally as:

The letters are among 45 sent nationwide by the Federal Trade Commission in conjunction with its ongoing efforts to protect consumers from COVID-19-related scams, according to the FTC.

Several of the most recent batch of letters target “treatments,” including Chinese herbal medications, music therapy, homeopathic treatments and shields claimed to boost the immune system by protecting the wearer from electromagnetic fields, according to the FTC.

A previous round of letters were sent to sellers of vitamins, herbs, colloidal silver, teas, essential oils and other products pitched as scientifically proven coronavirus treatments or preventatives, according to the FTC.

In all, letters have been sent to nearly 100 companies and individuals, according to the commission.

In the letters, the FTC states that one or more of the efficacy claims made by the marketers are unsubstantiated because they are not supported by scientific evidence, and therefore violate the FTC Act. The letters advise the recipients to immediately stop making all claims that their products can treat or cure COVID-19, and to notify the commission within 48 hours about the specific actions they have taken to address the agency’s concerns.

The letters also note that if the false claims do not cease, the commission may seek a federal court injunction and an order requiring money to be refunded to consumers.

— City News Service