Counterfeit Coupons - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Counterfeit Coupons

The Better Business Bureau (www.midsouth.bbb.org) and the Coupon Information Corporation (http://www.cents-off.com/) have issued a consumer alert about scammers printing legitimate coupons off the Internet, changing their expiration dates, then distributing or selling the altered ones auction sites.

* ONLY "FREE" OFFERS.  The Better Business Bureau says the fake coupons usually cover only products offered for free.  

* BUNDLES.  The auction sites give them away or sell them in bundles, mixing legitimate coupons with fakes in order to hide them.

* NO PRINTING.  Here's the real give-away: you can't print them off the site. If the site insists on e-mailing you the coupons or setting up a web link to get them, they are probably fake.

"UNLIMITED" or "HOME-PRINTED."  The CIC says look for these buzzwords in the site's sales pitch.  HUGE red flags!

The Coupon Information Corporation recommends retailers start using counterfeit-proof watermarks on their free coupons.  Straight on, you see the expiration date.  But tilted, the watermark appears right on top of the expiration date.  Here's an example:

http://www.cents-off.com/doc/CIC-AntiCounterfeit-Best-2006.pdf

 

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