Indiana warns about false, misleading virus cleaning claims

Indiana residents should be wary about false or misleading claims some companies are making about their ability to combat the spread of the coronavirus with disinfectants or cleaning services, state officials said.

The Office of the Indiana State Chemist said cleaning services and cleaning product manufacturers have claimed they can disinfect homes, workplaces, hospitals, cars and other spaces with products that will specifically kill the coronavirus, which causes the respiratory disease COVID-19.

“Companies are using a variety of marketing opportunities to advertise these claims — websites, TV, radio, flyers, mailers and social media,” said Sarah Caffery, a pesticide product registration specialist with the State Chemist’s office.

She said those include “claims that offer increased or advanced protections tied to this outbreak.”

The State Chemist’s office warns that such exaggerated or outright false claims could create a false sense of security, The Times of Northwest Indiana reported.

Consumers are urged to visit the Office of the Indiana State Chemist website to find a list of products that are effective against the virus, according to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency criteria.

The State Chemist’s office said it will pursue enforcement as necessary against false or misleading claims.

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