Consumer Tips

Counterfeit products are everywhere; here are tips to avoid buying any of them online

By Hannah Rhodes, Consumer Watchdog Associate
March 11, 2022

When we think of counterfeits, we often think of luxury products like bags or shoes. But counterfeits have crept into every type of product, with government officials finding counterfeit pharmaceuticals, hygiene products and children’s products.

National Consumer Protection Week 2022

By | Teresa Murray
Consumer Watchdog

Every day during the first week of March, PIRG is providing consumer protection tips and tools to help Americans address some of the most common consumer issues.

Identity theft is soaring; reduce your risk dramatically by simply freezing your credit files

By Teresa Murray, Consumer Watchdog
March 7, 2022

The problem of identity theft continues to grow. In 2021, people filed more complaints with the Federal Trade Commission about identity theft than anything else. In fact, identity theft comprised 25 percent of complaints filed last year, hitting 1.4 million cases, double the number from 2019.

How to find mistakes on your credit report

By Teresa Murray, Consumer Watchdog

A third of complaints to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last year involved incorrect information on people’s credit reports.


How to recognize fake online reviews of products and services

By Hannah Rhodes, Consumer Watchdog Associate
March 11, 2022

Endorsements to deceive consumers are plentiful on the Internet. To mediate this problem, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) put hundreds of companies on notice in October 2021 that if they use fabricated endorsements to deceive consumers, they could face financial penalties up to $43,793 per violation. 

How to avoid counterfeit COVID products

By Hannah Rhodes, Consumer Watchdog Associate
March 11, 2022

While all counterfeits can potentially carry health and safety risks, counterfeit products related to COVID-19 prevention or testing are especially concerning.  The false safety sense with fake COVID-19 at-home tests or counterfeit masks can directly affect consumer’s health. 

News Release | U.S. PIRG Education Fund | Consumer Tips

STATEMENT: Fitbit recalls about 1 million Ionic Smartwatches after 78 reports of burn injuries

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) in conjunction with Fitbit announced the recall of the Fitbit Ionic Smartwatches on Wednesday.

Space heaters lead to 1,700 fires and 80 deaths a year; here are tips to stay safe

By Isabel Brown and Hannah Rhodes, Consumer Watchdog Associates

Feb. 2, 2022

In the cold winter months, a space heater can be a helpful way to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. But space heaters can also pose a fire hazard, especially if they are used incorrectly or don’t meet current safety standards.


By Teresa Murray, Consumer Watchdog
Jan. 28, 2022

With the massive winter storm that's expected to hit the East Coast this weekend, here are some tips to help consumers protect themselves during and after a disaster, including how to spot possible opportunists, bad deals and con-artists:


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