Home » Archives by category » Business News (Page 3)

Department of Justice Files Motion Against Bayer Corporation

Department of Justice Files Motion Against Bayer Corporation

Image author: Bayer HealthCare AG(NEW YORK) — The U.S. Department of Justice has filed a motion to hold Bayer Corporation in civil contempt for making false claims about its product, Phillips’ Colon Health.

Bayer is accused of claiming that its product can “defend against” occasional constipation, diarrhea, gas and bloating in print and television advertisements, as well as on the product’s packaging — claims that the Department of Justice say imply that it cures or treats those conditions. The company, however, “lacks competent and reliable scientific evidence for those claims,” according to the Justice Department’s complaint.

A court order involving the DOJ and Bayer in 2007 prohibited the company from making fraudulent claims about any dietary supplement that it produces. The DOJ claims that Bayer has violated the court order and should be held in civil contempt.

“The Department of Justice will not tolerate companies that seek to gain an unfair advantage over their competitors by promoting to consumers unsubstantiated claim about the health benefits of their products,” Assistant Attorney General Stuart Delery said in a statement.

The original court order was entered after Bayer allegedly claimed that its One-A-Day WeightSmart multivitamin and dietary supplement helped prevent weight gain associated with slowed metabolism in adults over 30. Following a Department of Justice complaint in that case, Bayer agreed to pay $3.2 million and avoid making unsubstantiated claims about its products.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Lower Fuel Costs Push Import Prices Down

Lower Fuel Costs Push Import Prices Down

hxdbzxy/iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — U.S. import prices dropped for the second consecutive month in August, largely on the back of lower fuel prices.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, import prices were 0.9 percent lower in August than in July, while export prices dipped by 0.5 percent. The lower import prices represented the largest single-month decline since November 2013.

The cost of fuel imports dropped by 4.6 percent since July. Over the last year, fuel import prices have dipped by 4.5 percent, that following a 4.1 percent increase in the preceding 12 months.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

How this Mom Travels the World with Her Family for Almost Nothing

How this Mom Travels the World with Her Family for Almost Nothing

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Summer Hull just got back from a weekend with her family in Denver where she stayed at a five-star hotel for free. Before that, she planned a trip to Ireland that also cost next to nothing.

Hull is not an extreme coupon clipper or a super saver, but she and her family are full-time frequent flyers always on the lookout for the best deals.

Hull’s secret is raking up those travel points by using different credit cards for various purchases. She spends most of her time taking care of her 4-year-old daughter and managing her own company from home. She documents her travel tricks and successes on her blog, Mommy Points, which has opened doors to VIP experiences and even earned her extra income because she uses it to advertise travel-related services and deals.

“I write every day, a lot of it is about what we do to earn these points and just kind of a chronicle of what we do and everywhere we’ve gone and then also sharing other deals that come up,” she said.

This year, Hull and her family have trotted the globe on over 16 vacations spanning 100,000 miles. Most of the time, they are traveling for nearly nothing.

Personal finance expert and author of When She Makes More Farnoosh Torabi cautioned, “certainly, there are people out there trying to gain in the system and certainly, there are benefits to having multiple ‘reward’ credit cards, and while there are short-term benefits sometimes to opening up all these ‘reward’ cards, you have to think long-term. Is it smart for me to have all these credit cards at my fingertips? Depending on your personality, depending your tendency, this could be a disaster.”

Hull said she also tries to save money whenever she can, such as buying snacks at the grocery store instead of the airport before getting on a flight, and having her parents watch the family dog when they go away.

But for the most part, Hull said that over time she and her family just got smart about managing their credit cards and purchases.

Below are some of Hull’s travel tricks, and tune into Nightline Friday night at 12:35 a.m. ET to watch her story and get more of her tips, including how she earns travel points at the grocery store:

1. Maximize Rewards by Choosing the Best Credit Card for Each Purchase

Hull said she has a dozen active credit cards that she swaps out for different purchases, such as airline cards for flights.

“A big part of our strategy is credit card sign-up bonuses,” Hull said. “These banks want you to have their cards and I’m happy to get their card and take their miles and points and use them and travel the world.”

2. Use the ‘Stacking’ Strategy

“Stacking is when you’re adding a deal on top of a deal on top of a deal,” Hull explained. “So with the fuel points, I’m getting credit card points for shopping at a grocery store, and then I’m also getting money off my gas I’ll be getting anyways by buying gift cards that earn extra fuel points.”

3. Shop Online Through Airline ‘Shopping Portals’

For example, Hull said, United Airlines has an online shopping portal called United Mileage Plus shopping, which rewards users with a certain amount of miles when they purchase items through them.

“If you need to buy a $100 worth of make-up you do it when Sephora has ten times online, you can earn a 1,000 United miles for your $100 Sephora purchase,” Hull explained.

4. Sign Up for Dining Rewards

“You can register your card with different dining reward networks and earn miles when you eat out without even trying,” Hull said. “It’s something that has no membership card, no paperwork, register your card, eat out and sometimes miles will magically show up in your account.”

5. Aim for Elite Status

Hull is constantly looking for opportunities to earn elite status with hotel stays. Although it’s not ideal, she will ask her husband, who travels a lot for work, to stay in three different hotels for a three-night business trip.

“You can earn like hotel elite status based on nights or stays,” she said. “So it’ll earn you three nights but for example with Hyatt, you need 50 nights in a year to reach top tier diamond or 25 stays. So if you can change hotels every night, you can get there in 25 nights instead of 50.”

6. Plan One Vacation at a Time

Hull says it helps to have one trip goal in mind.

“I have usually no more than one big trip at a time we’re planning on,” Hull said. “Sometimes little stuff pops up but it helps me to have a big goal in mind that I know I’m earning toward and that way I don’t waste my miles on other things, I make sure we have enough for what we really want.”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

How Auto Mechanics Can Rip You Off

How Auto Mechanics Can Rip You Off

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Have you ever gone to an auto repair shop for an oil change, only to have the mechanic say your car needs a new transmission? Has the “check engine” light come on, and suddenly the mechanic says you need expensive new engine parts?

One seasoned auto mechanic is warning consumers to be well-versed in how a car works to avoid being ripped off at the auto repair shop.

“Joe,” who has been a mechanic for 40 years, agreed to reveal the secrets of his trade to ABC News’ 20/20 on the condition that his identity would remain concealed.

He said some mechanics may try to squeeze more money out of customers by doing unnecessary repairs. What drives mechanics to cheat or push unnecessary repairs, Joe said, is the tiny profit margin at many repair shops. Most mechanics are honest, he said, but many are pressured by their bosses to perform unnecessary work.

“The shop has to stay in business,” Joe said. “There are pressures to do things that maybe you wouldn’t do normally.”

Joe admitted that he has used shady tactics, himself, in the past.

“I’m ashamed a bit to admit it, but when your boss tells you…’Either you do it here or the door’s right there,’ what are you going to do?” he asked.

The Automotive Service Association says the majority of the service repair industry is ethical and only charges the consumer for necessary work.

20/20 went undercover at several auto repair shops in New York and New Jersey to see if mechanics would add unnecessary repairs and fees to service a 20/20 producer’s car, which had been given a clean bill of health by two licensed mechanics beforehand.

One of those licensed expert mechanics was Giuseppe Mendola, owner of AutoTech Diagnostic in College Point, New York.

“If they found a problem with this car, it would probably be a problem they invented or that didn’t exist at all,” Mendola said.

Watch the full story on ABC’s 20/20 Friday, Sept. 12, at 10 p.m. ET.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Microsoft Co-Founder Paul Allen Contributes $9 Million to Fight Ebola

Microsoft Co-Founder Paul Allen Contributes $9 Million to Fight Ebola

Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen followed in the footsteps of his former partner and fellow billionaire Bill Gates on Thursday, donating millions of dollars to help battle the spread of Ebola in West Africa.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on Wednesday pledged $50 million to help fight the disease, and one day later Allen announced that his foundation would contribute $9 million to the CDC Foundation. The money will be used to “establish emergency operations centers in the most-impacted countries of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.”

“The tragedy of Ebola,” Allen said in a post to the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation’s website, “is that we know how to tackle the disease, but the governments in West Africa are in dire need of more resources and solutions to treat and contain the virus.”

Allen wrote that his contribution is, “just the beginning of an ongoing commitment to help the people of West Africa,” though he acknowledged that, “money is only part of the answer.” The situation, Allen noted, requires, “creative and practical solutions for the logistical, healthcare worker safety and in-country education challenges aid organizations are facing.”

“A winnable battle should never be lost,” Allen said, urging others to “be a part of the solution” by giving to the CDC Foundation as well.

At least 2,296 people have been killed by the disease, and 1,997 more have fallen ill, the World Health Organization said.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

New Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus Available for Preorder Friday

New Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus Available for Preorder Friday

Apple(NEW YORK) — Ready, set … go!

The hotly anticipated iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are available Friday for preorder.

The phones officially went on sale at midnight on Apple.com and on the websites of various wireless carriers. Apple fanatics can also place their orders in-store at big-box retailers, including Best Buy, Walmart and Target.

Devices won’t reach consumers until Sept. 19, according to Apple.

The most obvious physical difference among previous iPhones and the latest devices is the screen size. The iPhone 6 is 4.7 inches, while the iPhone 6 Plus measures 5.5 inches diagonally, giving Samsung, which has dominated the giant phone market, some competition.

The iPhones are also packed with new features, including “reachability.” With a double touch, the display can slide down so users can reach “anything” at the top of the phone, an ideal feature for multitasking.

Apple Pay, the company’s digital wallet that is aiming to be a credit card killer, will also be supported on the new iPhones.

Apple uses a new chip called the Secure Element, which is embedded in the new devices. The chip stores users’ encrypted payment information and allows them to pay for items with a simple swipe.

McDonald’s, Subway, Whole Foods, and Apple retail stores are among the retailers that will accept Apple Pay when it launches next month. McDonald’s said all U.S. locations will accept Apple Pay after it is live.

The iPhone 6 starts at $199 for a 16 GB configuration, $299 for 64 GB and $399 for a 128 GB configuration, with a two-year contract.

The iPhone 6 Plus starts at $299 (16 GB), $399 (64 GB) and $499 (128 GB). Both phones come in three colors: gold, silver, and “space gray.”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Royal Bank of Scotland Could Move Headquarters to London

Royal Bank of Scotland Could Move Headquarters to London

AdrianHancu/iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(GLASGOW, Scotland) — The Royal Bank of Scotland Group confirmed on Thursday that if the upcoming referendum on Scottish independence passes, they will relocate their headquarters to London.

The bank says that it would “re-domicile the Bank’s holding company and its primary rated operating entity” in order to “provide clarity to all our stakeholders and mitigate risks.” The bank says the move would have no impact on its customers, as Scotland would remain part of the United Kingdom for at least 18 months following a “yes” vote.

The bank has been headquartered in Scotland since 1727 and “intends to retain a significant level of its operations and employment in Scotland” even if a move is undertaken.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Saks $400,000 Shopping Spree Called Credit Card Fraud

Saks $400,000 Shopping Spree Called Credit Card Fraud

klaptoman/iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Six Saks Fifth Avenue employees went on a months-long $400,000 shopping spree with customers’ credit cards at the fashionable store, according to a criminal report.

The Saks employees worked out an elaborate scheme that fraudulently used the credit cards of at least 22 customers to buy hundreds of pairs of designer shoes and handbags, including many that were found by police last week in the alleged ringleader’s apartment in Queens, N.Y.

The criminal complaint alleges that Tamara Williams, 36, stole customers’ credit card data from the store computers and then shared the information with five sales associates. Williams allegedly gave her cohorts specific lists of what they should buy from the store with the stolen credit card information.

A separate group called “the fake shoppers” would then be called in to “take the bags of fraudulently purchased items from certain of the…associates and return the items to (Williams) at designated meeting places in Queens.”

Some of the items were returned to Saks and the charges were returned to fake accounts created by the suspects, the complaint alleges.

The process was caught on surveillance footage that was then shown to police.

This operation carried on for four months until police raided Williams’ apartment on Friday and found “over one hundred boxes of shoes…as well as many boxes of handbags and other merchandise,” the criminal complaint stated.

Four men and one woman have been arrested in addition to Williams, and they have all been charged with grand larceny and identity theft.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

NFL Sponsor Pepsi Makes Statement on Ray Rice Controversy

NFL Sponsor Pepsi Makes Statement on Ray Rice Controversy

Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — A sponsor of the National Football League has issued a strong statement against domestic violence in light of the Ray Rice controversy.

“Domestic violence is completely unacceptable,” PepsiCo said in a public statement. “We are encouraged to see the NFL is now treating this with the seriousness it deserves.”

PepsiCo has maintained a 31-year partnership with the league, according to its website, and sponsors the Super Bowl Halftime Show, the NFL Rookie of the Week award and the NFL Rookie of the Year award.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Why Falling Gas Prices Have Further to Go

Why Falling Gas Prices Have Further to Go

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — There’s good news about the cost of energy: It’s getting cheaper.

The cost of oil has been falling for weeks on global markets. West Texas crude is now just under $91 a barrel.

The International Energy Agency has once again cut its oil demand forecast for 2014.

“The recent slowdown in demand growth is nothing short of remarkable,” the IEA says in its latest report, out Thursday. “While demand growth is still expected to gain momentum, the expected pace of recovery is now looking somewhat more subdued.”

Compared with August of last year, global supply rose more than 800,000 barrels a day.

Rising U.S. oil production is one important factor keeping a lid on the cost of oil. U.S. gasoline prices are expected to continue the downward trend this fall, analysts say.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Stock Market Report: Dow Jones Closes Down on Thursday

Stock Market Report: Dow Jones Closes Down on Thursday

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Stocks moved lower on Thursday as investors consider the outlook for interest rates, new sanctions against Russia, and volatile energy prices. According to the Stock Trader’s Almanac, September is traditionally the weakest month for the markets.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down over 19 points, ending the day at 17,049.00. But the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 did see some gains on Thursday; the Nasdaq went up over 5 points to 4,591.81 and the S&P climbed 1.76 points to 1,997.45.

Toyota is recalling 130,000 Tundra pickups because of a plastic trim piece that may interfere with the side airbags.

McDonald’s is test marketing “McBrunch” for weekend mornings, with items like the ciabatta breakfast sandwich.

The government is tightening its rules on reporting accidents in the workplace. Beginning January 1, employers must do so within eight hours of the incident. 

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Starbucks to Lift Ban on Visible Tattoos for Employees?

Starbucks to Lift Ban on Visible Tattoos for Employees?

iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Starbucks may lift its ban on visible tattoos for its employees.

Until now, the coffee chain has told baristas to keep them under wraps. But thousands of Starbucks employees signed a petition that opposes the ban.

The company is rethinking its dress code, including the tattoo policy, according to an internal memo from Starbucks Chief Operating Officer Troy Alstead.

“The company expects to announce a dress code update within the next few weeks,” a company spokesman told USA Today.

Some employees complained that even in hot weather they must wear long-sleeved shirts to hide their tattoos.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Starbucks to Lift Ban on Visible Tattoos for Employees?

Starbucks to Lift Ban on Visible Tattoos for Employees?

iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Starbucks may lift its ban on visible tattoos for its employees.

Until now, the coffee chain has told baristas to keep them under wraps. But thousands of Starbucks employees signed a petition that opposes the ban.

The company is rethinking its dress code, including the tattoo policy, according to an internal memo from Starbucks Chief Operating Officer Troy Alstead.

“The company expects to announce a dress code update within the next few weeks,” a company spokesman told USA Today.

Some employees complained that even in hot weather they must wear long-sleeved shirts to hide their tattoos.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

You’re Ordering Your Coffee Wrong: Baristas Spill the Beans

You’re Ordering Your Coffee Wrong: Baristas Spill the Beans

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Coffee is the most valuable traded commodity in the world, second only to oil. But while the average American worker spends $1,000 on coffee every year, there’s a chance they might not be ordering from their barista correctly.

“I think that there is an inaccurate perception of the negativity and bitterness of the barista,” barista Max Reid told ABC News’ 20/20. “I think one of the big frustrations is that the baristas and the customers aren’t speaking the same language.”

On average, coffee shop baristas get paid $8.66 an hour to serve coffee while dealing with both polite and rude customers.

“Baristas are basically drug dealers,” former barista Hayley Brown told 20/20. “So when the, you know, junkie comes to get his fix, he’s not going to be super-polite. He’s just really focused on getting what he’s there for.”

Inspired by their unpleasant customer experiences, Reid and Brown formed Les MiseraBaristas, singing about their lives in a coffee shop set to the music of Les Misérables in a YouTube video.

“It was all my pent-up sadness and frustration. And I took it to a creative outlet,” said Brown.

To help you get on your barista’s good side and leave with the perfect cup of coffee, the former baristas offered these tips below:

1. Find a barista who takes their time making your drink

Many baristas take pride in creating your coffee concoction.

“When I craft a drink, like, it has to have a certain quality or else I feel bad because I’m an artist,” Reid said. “I take pride in what I do, and I don’t want to do anything subpar.”

But you might even be missing out by going to a big box chain coffee shop.

Jennifer Garden, an instructor at the Ivy League Barista Academy Coffee School and operations manager at Better Buzz Coffee in San Diego, compared ordering coffee from a chain coffee shop to ordering a burger from a fast-food restaurant rather than a local burger joint.

“You can go to somewhere where somebody actually does have a passion, and they do care about what they’re preparing for the customer,” Garden told 20/20. “I feel like that’s the big difference, is when you’re really putting effort into what you’re preparing for the customer.”

2. Don’t be rude to your barista, or they might steal your buzz away from you

“For instance, if someone’s being particularly rude, you can add little extra charges,” Reid said.

A barista could charge you once for asking for caramel, vanilla and chocolate, or they might charge you three times if you’re unpleasant.

Reid said he’s even given decaf to rude customers who wanted extra caffeine.

3. Be aware of other customers

“Know what you want before you get to the register,” Brown said.

If there’s a line behind you, you might be wasting everyone’s time with your uncertainty.

4. Tipping helps

“If you put in that dollar, we will remember you,” said Reid.

A barista might give you a reward for your tip, such as putting extra whipped cream in your drink.

“Or, ‘Whoops, I accidentally made you a large one. Here you go, my mistake. Hope you don’t mind,’” Reid said.

5. Trust your barista

You might be frustrating your barista if you add too many substitutions to your drink order.

“I think that the reason that baristas are irritated with the customers sometimes is because customers are very particular about their drinks,” said Garden. “It’s really frustrating because the barista might have this set idea of what a drink should be like, should taste like, the milk that’s being used in it. And somebody comes in and just changes your entire recipe.”

According to Garden, if a barista is properly trained, they should know what to do with a drink and how a latte should really be served.

6. Engage your barista

“Saying, ‘How are you?’ back is really nice,” said Brown.

When customers were nice to her, Brown said she would go the extra mile for their drink.

“People I liked, I would reward, like give them a little extra whipped cream or, you know, draw a little smiley face on their cup,” she said.

7. Become a regular customer

According to Reid, baristas pick favorites when it comes to their customers.

“Being a regular does pay off,” Reid said. “We’ll give you, like, little free samples of things. You’ll be the first to try a new concoction we’re making.”

Tune in for the full story on ABC News’ “20/20″ Friday, Sept. 12, at 10 p.m. ET.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Jobless Claims Climb Higher to 315K

Jobless Claims Climb Higher to 315K

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Jobless claims were higher last week, increasing by 11,000, according to the latest figures released Thursday by the Labor Department.

For the week ending Sept. 6, the number of people filing for benefits jumped to 315,000. The previous week, claims stood at 304,000.

The Labor Department said there were no “special factors” impacting that week’s figures.

The four-week moving average jumped higher, increasing by just 750 to 303,250.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Woman’s Bid to End Prescription Drug Sales on eBay

Woman’s Bid to End Prescription Drug Sales on eBay

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Almost everything is for sale on the Internet auction site eBay, sometimes including powerful and potentially dangerous prescription drugs.

Nancy White, a Tennessee-based IT manager, said she has filed hundreds of reports with eBay customer service over the past four years complaining about prescription drugs being sold illegally on the site. She began her quest after ordering a skin cream and receiving a potentially harmful prescription medication instead.

“It was alarming, especially after I started investigating the scope of the problem,” she said.

Every time White makes a complaint, she said the company responds by removing the offending listings. But they’re usually back up within hours and often under the same seller profile, she said.

“They always assure me that this should not happen again and it will not happen again, but I’ve seen the same vendor relist the same drug over and over,” she said.

eBay spokesman Ryan Moore said the company goes through great lengths to protect consumers.

“eBay does not allow the listing of any substance that requires a prescription from a licensed medical practitioner or must be administered by a licensed practitioner. Listings that violate our policy are removed promptly after coming to our attention,” Moore told ABC News, adding that the online retailer is invested in systems dedicated to monitoring illegal listings.

However, White offered one example of a seller who has relisted the cosmetic cream, retin-A, eighteen separate times. While not the most hazardous product, retin-A does require a prescription. Side effects include excessive redness, blisters or a severe reaction to the sun in those who are allergic to it, according to Gina Caliendo, director of pharmacy at the Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center in New York.

The seller, whom ABC News is not naming, boasts a “100 percent positive feedback” rating. He did not immediately return a request for comment.

White said she concentrates on reporting vendors located in the U.S. Many appear to sell prescription drugs exclusively but some sell other products like e-cigarette devices, candy and even bow ties. Since there’s obviously no “prescription drug category” on the site, sellers typically post under “health and beauty,” “skin care,” “over-the-counter medications” or even “pet supplies.” Images of packaging are often posed to hide the “RX Only” notation, she said.

Some of the more than 50 medications White said she has reported to eBay do have serious side effects. Among them is Yasmin, a birth control pill that carries an increased risk of blood clots compared to other birth control medications. It also increases the risk of stroke, especially in smokers, Caliendo cautioned.

“Birth control is in common usage but no one should be using it without the supervision of a healthcare provider,” Caliendo said.

Another potentially dangerous drug White said she has reported multiple times is the anti-seizure drug, Tegretol. Caliendo said that doctors monitor use of this drug closely as patients are usually stepped up to a full dose over a period of weeks. Blood tests should be performed periodically to rule out potential toxic effects to the liver and bone marrow, Caliendo explained, adding that the drug can be fatal in high doses.

Dr. Ford Vox, a brain injury specialist with the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, Georgia, said eBay isn’t the only high traffic website that has a prescription drug problem. Several months ago, his wife ordered an acne medication on Amazon that turned out to be the prescription-only antibiotic, clindamycin.

“Many of these large, multinational sites blame the people who use their platforms when in actuality they need to rethink some of their fundamental procedures,” Vox said. “It indicates they aren’t taking upon themselves to look for patterns of abuse on their own.”

Amazon declined to comment for this story.

The Food and Drug Administration, one of the government agencies responsible for the oversight of prescription drug sales, did not respond to several requests for a comment. But Rusty Payne, a spokesman for the Drug Enforcement Administration, told ABC News that the agency is serious about stopping the sort of illegal activity described by White.

“We look anywhere and everywhere if there is an indication of drug trafficking, even a large site like eBay,” he said.

Vox said there is currently so little government supervision that only the companies themselves can find out the extent of criminal activities on their site. And he said the global nature of the sites are no excuse for allowing illegal activity.

“Imagine any local flea market operating under similar circumstances where individual vendors were selling illegally,” he said. “Law enforcement would come down hard. This is no different.”

As for why people would risk purchasing potential harmful prescriptions online, Vox said they might not realize they’re doing anything wrong.

“They may mistakenly believe that ordering their prescriptions like this is perfectly legal,” he said, adding that some might do it to save money or because they don’t have access to a doctor.

White said she hopes her crusade results in eBay cleaning up all illegal prescription drug sales.

“I want everyone to see that selling these drugs can have consequences,” she said. “There is a person at the other end of each transaction who could be in danger from what they buy on this site.”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Google Says System Was Not Breached, Advises Users to Protect Themselves Online

Google Says System Was Not Breached, Advises Users to Protect Themselves Online

Photo by Adam Berry/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Google denied on Wednesday that their system may have been compromised, allowing as many as five million users’ emails and passwords to be made public.

“The security of our users is of paramount importance to us,” a Google spokesperson said. “We have no evidence that our systems have been compromised, but whenever we become aware that an account has been compromised, we take steps to help our users secure their accounts.”

The Google spokesperson said that an exceedingly small percentage of the email addresses and passwords listed online match, meaning the majority are just random matches and would not allow access to a user’s account.

Google speculates that credentials could have been obtained in a number of ways without a breach of Google systems. Phishing schemes, the installation of malware, or the hacking of a third-party website where users may have reused passwords are among the possible causes.

As they have with other recent concerns about personal information, Google recommends users utilize a strong and unique password, update their recovery options and take advantage of two-step verification for log-ins.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Apple Removes iPod Classic from Website

Apple Removes iPod Classic from Website

Apple(NEW YORK) — After Tuesday’s announcement revealing the iPhone 6 and the Apple Watch, Apple has quietly removed the iPod classic from its website.

The iPod classic, the MP3 player with a clickwheel that revolutionized the music industry, was introduced in 2001.

Remaining iPod options on the Apple website include the iPod Shuffle, the iPod Nano, and the iPod Touch.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Home Depot Data Breach Affects 60M Customers, BillGuard Says

Home Depot Data Breach Affects 60M Customers, BillGuard Says

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — The country’s largest home improvement chain may end up being the victim of the largest payment data breach.

BillGuard, the bank and credit card tracking app, believes the breach at Home Depot affects 60 million customers and may result in more than $2 billion worth of fraudulent charges.

BillGuard says the average amount of fraud posted to each affected account is about $300.

[ CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL RELEASE FROM BILLGUARD ]

Home Depot declined to confirm, saying it has nothing new to share and is continuing the investigation into the size and scope of the breach, which may have started as far back as April.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Stock Market Climbs After Two Days of Losses

Stock Market Climbs After Two Days of Losses

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — After two days of losses, the stock market climbed on Wednesday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up almost 55 points, ending the day at 17,068.71. The Nasdaq gained over 34 points, closing at 4,586.52, while the S&P 500 added 7.25 points, closing at 1,995.69.

Apple’s stock rose almost 3% on Wednesday, just one day after the company introduced a smartwatch, a bigger iPhone, and a brand-new mobile-payment system.

A security breach at Home Depot may have affected 60 million shoppers and may result in more than $2 billion of fraudulent charges.

On Wednesday the Atlantic City Convention Center was transformed into a resource center for the thousands of laid-off workers following the closing of two casinos over the Labor Day weekend. The resource center aims to help people file for unemployment and find new work.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Advertise With Us

Would you like to advertise on East Idaho News? Fill out this form to contact a representative.
  • Full and Last
  • The name of your company, business or brand.