"Shark Tank" has never endorsed or invested in any CBD or keto gummies products. If readers were scammed by this, we recommend reading this article in its entirety. We also advise readers to bookmark this article or to email it to themselves, as we plan on updating it in the future.
One online scam that never seems to come to an end is the lie that the cast of the TV show "Shark Tank" endorsed, invested in, or provided reviews for either CBD gummies or keto gummies for weight loss.
For years, scammers have used the "Shark Tank" name to push the false idea that the cast of the show invested in CBD gummies and keto gummies, even though no such episode of the show ever aired. No one on the "Shark Tank" show has anything to do with CBD gummies or keto gummies.
In this story, we'll spell out everything we know about these scams. We'll also provide ways to fight back.
How the 'Shark Tank' Keto Gummies Scams Work
Some readers may have seen scam ads about "Shark Tank" and keto gummies online, perhaps in Google search results or on Facebook or Instagram.?Such ads also appeared in email messages, like the one shown below.
This ad for Royal Keto Gummies featured a fairly professional-looking design that may have fooled multitudes of users into believing it had legitimacy.
These ads led to scammy articles branded with the logos of major publishers. However, those articles were written by scammers and hosted on scam websites.
Here's how the seemingly legitimate-looking articles were created. Scammers copied the designs of various news websites in order to fool potential victims into thinking they were reading from the publisher's official page. In the past, scammers copied and used article layouts from ABC News, Fox News, Us Weekly, "Today," People magazine, Time magazine, and others.
USA Today never printed this article. Also, "Emily Senstrom," the person named at the bottom of the image as being "a top medical student at Harvard University," does not exist.
The articles usually claim that various celebrities including Oprah Winfrey, Ree Drummond, Kelly Clarkson, Tom Selleck, Kaley Cuoco, Melissa McCarthy, Wayne Gretzky, the cast of "Shark Tank," or others all endorsed either CBD gummies or keto gummies, even though they had no involvement with the products whatsoever. In reality, the image and likeness of each celebrity was being used without permission.
Aside from the scammy ads, we often see numerous fake CBD and keto gummies reviews that use the "Shark Tank" name. These articles aren't really reviews, however. They're paid-for product pitches that appear as sponsored content.
We don't recommend placing even one bit of trust in scammy sponsored content articles.
Outlook India, Tribune India, Mid-Day.com, and others all appeared to be accepting money in exchange for sponsored content articles that named "Shark Tank" alongside many different CBD and keto gummies product names.
'Fulfillment Center' in Smyrna, Tennessee
In recent months, our reporters received word from some users who said they received bags (not boxes) of CBD or keto gummies products at their doorstep, despite having no recollection of ordering the products. Some also said there was no charge on their credit card. It's unclear why people who hadn't ordered or been charged for the products were receiving them in the mail.
Many of these users said that the return address?on the package was for a nameless "fulfillment center" with a P.O. box in Smyrna, Tennessee, Tampa, Florida, or Las Vegas, Nevada.
Typing "fulfillment center" into Google (without quotes) displayed the first search suggestion as "fulfillment center smyrna tn," which perhaps showed just how many people were looking for help after being scammed. Unfortunately, more details about these "fulfillment center" addresses were not yet available at the time this article was published. It's unclear if anyone associated with these mailboxes or locations had any knowledge of or involvement with the scams.
Missing Phone Numbers and Surprise Charges
In the past, our reporters noticed that brand new CBD gummies and keto gummies product names popped up regularly, with no sign of a parent company or any other branding, as if such details had been omitted on purpose. It's possible that many of these products were the same and had simply been rebranded after previous product names received negative feedback.
We also noticed that phone numbers on some product order pages for CBD and keto gummies are often missing or disconnected. Placing a call to any working number goes to a generic, nameless customer service phone line. When calling these lines, the person on the other end of the call declined to say the name of the?company they worked for, nor would they give any information regarding the name of the apparent call center.
One additional aspect of the "Shark Tank" CBD gummies and keto gummies scams, plus the scams that used the image and likeness of other celebrities, was that many users told us they believed they would be charged around $40 for their order, but were ultimately charged close to $200. From what we could tell, this information may have appeared in the fine print of the terms and conditions, but was not mentioned at all on product checkout pages.
After having difficulties getting in touch with the phone line for the product they ordered, users consistently told us that they were offered a refund of 50%, something that apparently was a part of the call center's script.
Mark Cuban Tweeted About the Scams
In 2022, "Shark Tank" cast member Mark Cuban tweeted about the seemingly never-ending keto gummies scams, where he railed against tech platforms that continue to accept money from scammers to allow ads to run that promote the scams.
"Does anyone really think keto pills work?," Cuban asked. "Why would anyone take an ad for them with or without the fake endorsement? Where is the content filtering that we hear so much? If a platform can't detect fake keto or CBD gummy ads, can they really detect anything? Or do they not care that mostly seniors are getting ripped off!"
The official "Shark Tank" website on ABC.com also once published a page about scammers that use the show's name without authorization.
"The internet has become overrun with advertisements featuring products allegedly endorsed by 'Shark Tank' or the Sharks," the page read. "Many merchants are using the names and images of the show and the Sharks in an attempt to sell their products. Unfortunately, with every new episode comes the opportunity for imposters to use false information to exploit the unwary. While many products claim to have been on 'Shark Tank,' that is not always the case."
Clint Eastwood's Lawsuit Wins
On the subject of gummy scams, this story would not be complete without the inclusion of two past court cases.
In 2021, famed film actor and director Clint Eastwood won $6.1 million in a lawsuit after alleging that a Lithuanian company had used his image and likeness without permission to promote CBD products.
In the following year, Eastwood won another lawsuit, also pertaining to a CBD promotion. That time, he won $2 million. Cannabis Law Report said that the lawsuit had been filed against "Los Angeles-based Norok Innovation Inc. and its CEO Eric Popowicz."
How to Fight the Scams
If you believe you've been a victim of fraud, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) allows users to file a report.
Also, if any readers find one of the scammy articles that claims "Shark Tank" or other big-name celebrities endorsed keto gummies, or find a product order page that is believed to be involved in the scam, the domain URL can be reported to its registrar. Simply visit godaddy.com/whois and type in the website address. This form will display domain registration information for the website. Look for the "Registrar Abuse Contact Email" and?"Registrar Abuse Contact Phone" in order to report the website to the company that allowed it to be registered.
If any readers were scammed, we recommend bookmarking this page or emailing it to yourself so that you can revisit it in the future to view further updates, as we do plan on adding additional information as it becomes available.