Buyer beware: the Better Business Bureau is warning consumers of free CBD scams running rampant right now. These scams are often well orchestrated, designed to look highly legitimate in order to take a chunk out of your wallet.
So, what do they look like, and how can you protect yourself and your bank account?
Free CBD Scams: How They Work
There are a few free CBD scams out there now, some worse than others.
Scam #1: Scammy Subscriptions
This scam involves an offer for free CBD, all you have to do is provide your credit card and pay the shipping, which isn’t a big deal. Sounds too good to be true? That’s because it is.
Once all is said and done, you’ve unknowingly signed up for a subscription service. Sure, sometimes it’s in the fine-print, but how many of us read the fine print, really. And yes, you have 14 days to cancel. But the CBD usually takes longer that that, so you’re past the cancellation period.
Now your credit card will be charged the next month, for a price that can be much higher that quality products from reputable companies.
What’s worse, often the cancelation process is painful. No online service, and call wait times through the window.
According to the Better Business Bureau, many people have tried to shut down these scammers. The problem is, once they’re found out, the companies disband and set up shop under a new name.
Scam #2: The Fakes and Fraudsters
This isn’t technically a free CBD scam, but it is a scam that can end up costing you money.
In this scenario, a fake company will take the name of an established CBD brand and set up a site online to look exactly like that company. This confuses people into buying products from their website instead. Often they’ll use an alternate/incorrect spelling, one that people commonly use, getting all the online traffic that misspelling generates.
Then, you buy the CBD from this company, branded the same as the legitimate company, but you get a subpar product. What’s worse, many of these also pull the scammy subscription deal on top of it.
How to Avoid Free CBD Scams
With a little extra caution you can easily avoid falling victim to free CBD scams. These are some tips to keep you, and your wallet, protected:
- Read that Fine Print. Make sure you clearly understand what it is you’re paying for. It is very rare for a legitimate, high-quality CBD company to offer free CBD, so be wary whenever you see those neon lights.
- Look into the Company. How long have they been in business. Check their social media – do their reviews and posts go back a long time, or just a few weeks.
- Ask Friends and Family for Recommendations.
- Call the company. Unsure about an offer? Get in touch with the company and ask.
Based on what we’ve seen with similar scams in other industries, these free CBD scams will continue. As consumers, we just need to be aware and pay attention to make sure we’re actually getting the good stuff.