HashOut: 2007/04/09
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Beware the Online Quack

Beware of Online Quacks, Loonies, Tricksters, Frauds, Cheaters with QuackwatchLoonies and tricksters have always been ready to sell us "miracle cures", but the Internet has made it so much easier. Dr. Stephen Barrett has spent 30 years campaigning against dodgy tests and cures and now does it online at www.quackwatch.org. Here are some of his warning signs to watch out for:

  • Claims that most diseases are caused by diet or can be cured with supplements.
  • Pseudo-medical jargon, eg, offers to "detoxify" or "balance" your body.
  • Anyone claiming that doctors, drug companies or the government want to suppress their find.
  • "Secret cures" -- quacks only keep them secret to stop others proving they don't work.
  • Products claimed to work against many unrelated diseases.
  • Encouragement to ignore established scientific thinking and "think for yourself."
  • Testimonials or (misquoted) scientific references.
  • Allowing desperation to cloud your judgement.
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