FTC Takes Action Against Makers of an ‘Invisible Mask’ They Falsely Claimed Protected Users from COVID-19

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The Federal Trade Commission sued to stop four related defendants from deceptively marketing their 1 Virus Buster Invisible Mask

(Invisible Mask) that purportedly creates a three-foot barrier of protection against 99.9 percent of all viruses and bacteria, including COVID-19 – without any scientific proof that the product actually works.

Despite receiving a warning letter that the FTC sent in July 2020, the New York-based defendants continued falsely advertising the Invisible Mask—a badge worn around the neck—as a scientifically proven defense against COVID-19 and other diseases and that it was a government-approved device, according to the FTC’s complaint.

Three of the four defendants have agreed to a proposed order settling the FTC’s complaint, and will be banned from making unsupported health claims for products designed to prevent or treat COVID-19.

“The defendants’ claims that their products can stand in for approved COVID-19 vaccines are bogus,” said Samuel Levine, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “The FTC will use every tool it has at its disposal to stop false and unsubstantiated health claims that endanger consumers.”

The complaint alleges defendants Gary Kong, Timothy Wetzel, and the two companies they operate, K W Technology Inc. and K W Technology NV Inc., violated the FTC Act and the Covid Consumer Protection Act through their marketing and sale of the Invisible Mask on their own website, YouTube, and Facebook, where it was called “The 1 Virus Buster Card.”

This card, which was worn around the neck or clipped onto clothing, was sold using deceptive claims, the FTC says. For example, the defendants claimed their product “uses quantum theory technology, combines known virus and bacteria killing compounds. It is safe, simple, and effective. All you need to do is hang it around your neck or attach it to your collar, close to your mouth and nose. . . it kills 99.9% of most harmful bacterial and viruses . . . within a three-foot radius.”

The FTC contends the defendants have no reliable scientific evidence to support their claims that the Invisible Mask can prevent any human disease, and that despite contacting the FTC after receiving the warning letter and vowing to stop making such claims, they simply continued deceptively marketing the product.

The complaint also alleges the defendants falsely claimed that the Invisible Mask or its materials are government approved or made in a government-approved facility. They also falsely claimed the Invisible Mask had “FDA Approval” and that that the materials used to make it are “EPA-approved.” On their website the defendants posted a phony “Certificate of Registration” with the FDA’s logo, despite the fact that no such agency certificate exists.

The Kong Proposed Order

Three of the defendants have agreed to settle the FTC’s complaint in this case. A proposed court order will ban defendants Kong and his two companies, K W Technology Inc. and K W Technology NV Inc., from advertising, promoting, or selling any product claiming to prevent or treat COVID-19, unless the claims are true and supported by scientific evidence. The order also will bar the defendants from making any health-related product claims unless they have scientific evidence that the claim is true and from making misrepresentations about products’ health benefits, performance, efficacy, safety, or side effects.

The order also prohibits the defendants from misrepresenting they have government approval, clearance, or authority for their products and product claims. Finally, it requires the payment of $150,000.

The Commission voted 3-0 to file the complaint and proposed stipulated order against defendants Kong, K W Technology Inc. and K W Technology NV Inc. The FTC filed the documents in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Litigation continues against defendant Wetzel, who did not agree to the proposed settlement.

The lead attorney on the matter is Robin L. Rock of the FTC’s Southeast Region.

Official news published at https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/news/press-releases/2023/10/ftc-takes-action-against-makers-invisible-mask-they-falsely-claimed-protected-users-covid-19

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VIP Minds CEO and Visionary Nora Abou Chakra Launches ‘Power Hearts,’ a Transformative Initiative Driving Social Change

CEOs revolutionizing philanthropy through inspiring charitable actions

Today marks the launch of "Power Hearts," an innovative initiative led by businesswoman and visionary Nora Abou Chakra. With each endeavor, Power Hearts embarks on a different mission, empowering CEOs to take direct action and make a tangible impact. Through immersive experiences and hands-on involvement, Power Hearts addresses pressing societal issues, fostering empathy and inspiring CEOs to become advocates for change within their organizations and communities.

Nora Abou Chakra, a respected entrepreneur known for her philanthropic endeavors, has once again demonstrated her commitment to driving social change with the launch of Power Hearts. Under this empowering initiative, CEOs from diverse industries come together to tackle pressing issues and create transformative solutions.

An example of these missions is hunger. Power Hearts combats hunger and alleviate the suffering of those affected by it. CEOs gather in a large-scale communal kitchen, where they actively participate in purchasing groceries and cooking meals for those in need.

The immersive experience provided by Power Hearts goes beyond the kitchen. CEOs physically hit the streets, personally distributing the freshly prepared meals to individuals experiencing hunger. This direct interaction with those in need further deepens their understanding of the issue, sparking a profound connection and a sense of shared humanity.

CEOs return to their organizations with a renewed perspective and a profound commitment to addressing the issue of hunger. They become ambassadors for change, leveraging their influence and resources to advocate for hunger relief initiatives within their respective communities and among their staff members.

Nora Abou Chakra, the driving force behind Power Hearts, expressed her enthusiasm for the initiative, stating, "Power Hearts aims to create a ripple effect of compassion and advocacy. By immersing CEOs in the realities of pressing social issues, we ignite a powerful drive for change that reverberates throughout their personal and professional spheres. Together, we can make a significant difference and create a more compassionate and equitable world."

Power Hearts represents Nora Abou Chakra's unwavering commitment to leveraging the influence and resources of business leaders for the greater good. By providing CEOs with transformative experiences, Power Hearts empowers them to become catalysts for change and advocates for social causes that resonate with their hearts.

For more information about Power Hearts and its upcoming initiatives, please visit powerhearts.com or follow us on @power.hearts

Contact Information:
Stephanie Khalil
Executive Assistant to CEO

Original Source: VIP Minds CEO and Visionary Nora Abou Chakra Launches 'Power Hearts,' a Transformative Initiative Driving Social Change

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