WARNING: Don’t Get Scammed by a Keto Supplement

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WARNING: Don't Get Scammed by a Keto Supplement

PLEASE NOTE…if you have been scammed, I’m so sorry but there is nothing I can do to help get your money back.

That is why I wrote this post and another Dietary Supplements: The truth about the pills you’re popping. You might need to cancel your credit card. 


A few months ago I wrote a post about keto supplements, keto hoax and Shark Tank. (If you’re not familiar with the ketogenic diet or ‘keto,’ read this post.) It broke my heart to see a comment from a woman who fell victim to the scheme. Several people contacted me with similar stories. Sharon gave me permission to tell her story (edited for space)—we hope we can prevent others from something similar happening.

(To answer the question brought up from that post…NO I do not recommend these keto supplements. And you can read here why I don’t recommend the ketogenic diet in general. Subscribe to my blog so you don’t miss upcoming posts and if you’re not familiar with the supplement industry you will want to read this.)

She thought she was buying a product for $19.99 and got charged $278!

Sharon wrote, “I am normally very wise about such ads and normally the person who would tell you to be aware. However, I researched online and found one bottle of a keto supplement was on sale for $19.99.”

After ordering, within seconds Sharon got an email with an order number. She was charged $199.99. She called immediately to say a mistake was made but was told it was too late, the product was already being packaged and shipped. (Seriously? Within seconds?)

A supervisor was unavailable when she requested the call be escalated. Sharon contacted her bank and was charged not $19.99 nor $199.99, but $278.07. The bank blocked her card for further transactions and her situation was referred to her bank’s dispute center for investigation. So what could Sharon have done?

How not to fall for online gimmicks

Unfortunately, situations like Sharon’s are not out of the norm, so I offer this advice. And not advice just for a keto keto hoax-keto scamsupplement product, but any supplement/product purchased online. Be wary of these points:

  • Ignore product review sites and be cautious of most links. Some look legit but many are trying to sell you something and are often a scam. You’ll see things like this in your product search (substitute any product name for keto).
    • Top Keto Products—We Reviewed this Year’s Best
    • Top 10 Best Keto Products
    • Be Wary of THESE Keto Supplements
  • Beware of phony blogs.
    • You might search a product and up pops something like how to avoid the (name of product) scam…you click and it is another site selling a bogus product.
    • In one search I found a blog touting a keto supplement and when I clicked on the About Us link I got this dummy text often used as filler content: Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.
      No legitimate source was mentioned on the site.
  • Beware of bogus ads. You’ve seen them I’m sure…they pop up in your news feed, “Never eat these foods,” or “Eat this one food to rid your body of belly fat.”
  • Beware of endorsements. As I wrote about before, Shark Tank did NOT invest in a keto supplement. In response to a tweet, Mark Cuban replied:“This is a scam. If you see anything like this, please report them to the @FTC. We chase them but it’s like whack a mole.”
  • Beware of testimonials – Anecdotal info (personal stories) are not reliable and there is no way to know if it was just written by someone with a knack for words. “The plural of anecdote is not data.”
  • Don’t trust reports of clinical studies – you might see clinically proven or clinically tested, but unless you can verify the validity of the study, there likely is no truthfulness to the claim. No agency verifies reports stated in advertising content.
  • Do your due diligence and check the company you’re buying from. Check out the Better Business Bureau or complaint websites like complaintsboard.com or reach out to me like my mom did.
  • Beware of free.
    • A message on the complaintboard.com website, “Got offered (a) free trial only had to pay shipping then today (date) had $260 taken out of my bank account for something I have never agreed or signed up to now I’m left with no money this week unable to buy food, etc…”
    • In another message someone wrote, “Unauthorized payment from my account. I applied for a free trial and only had to pay for posted but now I find that they are accessing my account without my permission for the last 3 months and I don’t even use the product….”

Guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)

  • Avoid hidden costs by researching online – see what other people are saying about their free trials and service.
  • When placing an order if there is a checked box, uncheck it – keeping it checked might be giving the company authorization.
  • Dispute the charge with your credit card company…never use a debit card. And report to ftc.gov/complaint
  • Here are some practical tips to help you stay ahead of crooks trying to scam you. 10 things you can do to avoid fraud
  • Free Trials Will Cost You

Facts about the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) 1994:

One of my favorite presentations to give is called, Supplement Sense or Nonsense: The Truth About the Pills You’re Popping. Let me know if your company or organization is interested in hearing me speak. I go into detail in my post Dietary Supplements: The truth about the pills you’re popping. 

  • Since passage of DSHEA in 1994—which essentially deregulated the industry—the market grew from an estimated 4,000 products to over 80,000.
  • No dietary supplement is required to be proven safe and/or effective before putting on the market.
  • If you see a dietary supplement claim made in an “FDA-approved” facility you cannot be assured of its quality—FDA does not approve supplement facilities.
  • The most adulterated product category/categories of supplements includes:
    • Weight loss – contain illegally added weight loss drugs or banned substances.
    • Male enhancement – contain illegally added Viagra or other drug for erectile dysfunction.
    • Physical enhancement (body building) – contain illegally-added anabolic steroids.

What happened to Sharon?

Did Sharon get her money back?

Eventually, yes Sharon got her money back after the investigation. But not from the manufacturer, from her bank.

Sharon sent constant emails and made calls to the manufacturer to fix the situation but it was a constant runaround. She had documented proof of ordering one, not six bottles of the keto supplement.

A 69-year-old female on a fixed lower income and out several hundred dollars is devastating.

Sharon and I offer this advice:

  1. Go to your bank (or call them) to make a report.
  2. Contact the company immediately. Legitimate companies will (should!) have willing customer service reps.
  3. Keep documentation of everything—numbers you call, names of people you speak to, time and date you call, etc.
  4. Use a virtual or prepaid credit card. Several card issuers offer them, for example Citibank
  5. Review your bank and credit card activity online regularly (don’t wait for monthly statements).
  6. Contact the FTC and file a report. You can do that here.
  7. Contact the BBB and make a report. You can do that here.
  8. NEVER use a debit card for online purchases.
  9. Follow up, follow up, follow up.

If it sounds too good to be true, it is. As always, buyer beware.

Thanks for reading! Lmk if you had a similar experience and what advice you can offer my readers.

-Neily

P.S. Need help in figuring out what to do next? Schedule a complimentary meeting with me!


Photo credits: pixabay.com and ftc.gov

Jennifer Neily, MS, RDN, LD, FAND
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist | Wellcoach® Certified Health Coach
https://NeilyonNutrition.com
@JenniferNeily Twitter | @NeilyonNutrition Instagram


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55 Comments

  1. Dana Steward

    Great Article! Professor Neily…

    Reply
    • Neily

      Thank you Dana – hope all is well with you!
      Neily

      Reply
      • Diana

        Im a new victim, i got charge $199 twice! I sent email to customer service of keto prime diet and no one of them really help me. They only apologize and said they cant cancel it and my order has been ship.
        Even i didnt join any membership. They charge me every month. Its so frustating…

        Reply
        • Neily

          I’m so sorry about that Diana – have you contacted your credit card company? Make sure you keep at them!
          -Neily

          Reply
        • Kim

          I keep getting messages from different numbers about this and don’t know how to make it stop. Please help 🥺

          Reply
        • Theresa

          I am also a victim. I only ordered the keto pills, which were 3 bottles for $80.00. WI received an email from the co., stating that the charge was $286.00. Included were 4 other bottles of supplements that I didn’t order. I have sent them 20 emails asking for a refund to my charge. I returned the pills by certified mail which they received on May 18th, it’s now July 25th and I haven’t received any response from them and neither has my charge card co.

          Reply
      • Kristy Riley

        I’m literally bawling. This just haooened yo me a few no utea ago. I ordered an order for $34.99 and got charged $198 extra. I can’t reach the company and cant find anything on it. I’ve emailed them.i called my card and they said because its pending still, I can not dispute it. I habe to wait 5 calender days. I dont know what to do. I’m a mom of 3 on ssi and my husband makes the majority of our income. It was a direct express (ssi) card I used. Im in tears and dont know what to.do and feel so stupid.

        Reply
        • Neily

          Kristy I’m so sorry that happened to you 🙁
          This is some of the advice I offered in the post…
          1. Go to your bank (or call them) to make a report.
          2. Contact the company immediately. Legitimate companies will (should!) have willing customer service reps.
          3. Keep documentation of everything—numbers you call, names of people you speak to, time and date you call, etc.
          4. (for future online purchases) Use a virtual or prepaid credit card. Several card issuers offer them, for example Citibank
          5. Review your bank and credit card activity online regularly (don’t wait for monthly statements).
          6. Contact the FTC and file a report. Do that here.
          7. Contact the BBB and make a report. Do that here.
          8. Follow up, follow up, follow up.

          Be diligent and good luck.
          Neily

          Reply
        • Neily

          Please don’t feel stupid Kristy…these scams happen because they’re effective at luring people to buy. #sosad
          Neily

          Reply
        • Erica

          They got me too!!! I am so sorry. I called them and told them I’d received the package (which I cancelled in less than 24 hours after they took an unauthorized $198 out) and got a cancel confirmation number (apparently bogus). I am shipping the unopened package back today, they SAY they will refund me $170.73, which I doubt. They want to charge me a $5 restocking fee for every bottle they mailed, which I cancelled within hours….anyway—I may have to cancel my card. I never do any purchase like this, so they got me. They prey on people’s emotions with a low one time discount which is BOGUS. They messed with the wrong one this time. I am not stopping until I shut them down. Every media outlet, every board, I will warn others. It is fraud. DO NOT BUY KETO CLEANSE.

          Reply
          • Neily

            Kristy –
            “They messed with the wrong one this time. I am not stopping until I shut them down. Every media outlet, every board, I will warn others. It is fraud.”
            Yes, yes, yes!
            The fraud will never stop unless people like you help spread the message.
            Neily

        • Renee Grimm

          I called this number 18774450027 and threatened to call the attorney general and I also used my direct express card I ever backed down on the attorney general and they finally gave in and refunded my money should be on my card 3-7 days .still contacting attorney general on monday.to report this. Good luck

          Reply
      • Jacquelyn Jones

        Thank you Kelly I got screwed the first and last time . Don’t fall for Alien Tape advertised 3 rolls of tape $ 19:99 you will be charged a extra ,$ 10.00 for each double with ship handling charges around $7:00 or $8:00 Total charged $42.00 and besides you can never get a rep no time you call. Just go to the local Walmart or all stores that sells as seen on t:v. The tape is very sticky only good for laying down rugs or cable cords. Tried the heavy picture hanging as they advertised on tv., Hung two days hit the floor broke cannot replace the original picture or the frame.

        Reply
      • Daymond

        They got me too with the $199 plus $80 dollars they took off my card I been trying to get my money back n they giving me the around I call them no one answer the phone I send emails n no response back my bank is allowing them to take the money out I been dealing with this for 3 months now so pissed off they never give me a tracking number so upset

        Reply
        • Neily

          I’m so sorry Daymond. Hopefully you will take action like I stated in the blog post. This is some of the advice I offered in the post…
          1. Go to your bank (or call them) to make a report.
          2. Contact the company immediately. Legitimate companies will (should!) have willing customer service reps.
          3. Keep documentation of everything—numbers you call, names of people you speak to, time and date you call, etc.
          4. (for future online purchases) Use a virtual or prepaid credit card. Several card issuers offer them, for example Citibank
          5. Review your bank and credit card activity online regularly (don’t wait for monthly statements).
          6. Contact the FTC and file a report.
          7. Contact the BBB and make a report.
          8. Follow up, follow up, follow up.

          Be diligent and good luck. Again, I’m sorry
          Neily

          Reply
      • Richard Lewis

        I have had the same thing to happen to me with Keri. I made an order of one bottle, and they keep sending me bottled. I requested to be unsubscribed. They continued. I called and they still sent them. Thanks for the article.

        Reply
        • Neily

          My pleasure Richard! Hopefully, any extraneous charges have been resolved.
          Neily

          Reply
    • Terri Koch

      My name is Terri, worked for a Law Firm here in Tyler TX. 16yrs. Am 73 and retired in 2017 as my only living family ( my son ) never sick since age 6 now at 52 was dignosed with a rare no systoms cancer Squimus Cell Carcinoma. Stage 4 Termonal. My heart shattered ! He was given 4 months but made it 12. They couldn’t believe it. At Hospice they said probably by the next morning, he was there four days. I’ve never been sick no female problems no meds except for my hands . My son and I have always been told we were brother and sister, we both appear 10 yrs younger. When he left it was April 1st 2017 his friends commented he didn’t wait until his BD the 16th he was a upbeat sweet person, He left on April fools day. My life stopped. In cosmetics and modeling ( my son modeled with me in a bridal gown catalog ) for 15 yrs I kept in shape. But gained some weight to my 115 went up 30 lbs from NOT eating for a yr and staying in bed. So I’ve lost my $1,800 a mo at the Law Firm and have Medicare. No family and I don’t choose to date. I usually work two jobs and have done well. ( YES ) I got caught up in a ketogeniks keto scam. It arrived with a second bottle of detox not ordered. Same story , the $6.84 bottle is now $87.89 the other $6.84 is now $92.99 already taken from my account. They shipped it out of FL the 19th , there not counting travel time of the product. I called upon receiving these items and stated listen to your phone call, I did not order Detox. I asked for a label to return, never got it and meanwhile I’ve had two breast cancer surgeries in three weeks and both eyes done removing cataracts and Fri a tooth extracted, one root canal and two crowns and much more to go. And I was told last week by my Breast Dr. Where I’ve been having an unusual amount of pain it’s a large blood clot. Ut- MDAnderson had not released me yet. Meanwhile I’m trying hard to save money for a Memorial for my son. I did release some ashes on the Dallas NasCar greens , he loved races and followed the Earnhearts. I’ve already put a dispute on the nearly two hundred $ at my bank and canceled my debit card. I fought in court and I’m ready to fight again. One attorney will prepare a letter I’ve copied some info off my cell phone data. They are using another bottle label that is exactly like another one on line. They go by Be Sure Fat Burn , Be sure Detox and Revitalizepurehltesto, My plan is to get paperwork done , copies off line ( they rate 2 stars) from the BBB. Ship these bottles back tomorrow asking for a full refund , as they sent extra product not ordered and was not concerned with my phone call the day receiving them. I-8 shipped I’m calling USPS and asking the delivery date. Any Dr. will tell you you need at least 30 days to try a new product. If you can advise me at all, please do. Didn’t mean to write a letter. I thank you in advance for your time. I may follow up with a couple photos. Terri Koch 4788 CR 1120 Tyler, TX 75704 903-5338866
      [email protected]

      Reply
      • Neily

        Terri – your message is heartbreaking. I’m so sorry about your loss – losing a son is devasting.

        The post contains all the information you need. I’ve copied here:

        Go to your bank (or call them) to make a report.
        Contact the company immediately. Legitimate companies will (should!) have willing customer service reps.
        Keep documentation of everything—numbers you call, names of people you speak to, time and date you call, etc.
        Use a virtual or prepaid credit card. Several card issuers offer them, for example Citibank
        Review your bank and credit card activity online regularly (don’t wait for monthly statements).
        Contact the FTC and file a report. You can do that here.
        Contact the BBB and make a report. You can do that here.
        NEVER use a debit card for online purchases.
        Follow up, follow up, follow up.

        Good luck and God bless –
        Neily

        Reply
  2. Caleb R.

    You’ve got to be careful nowadays when ordering online

    Reply
    • Neily

      Yes indeed you do! Thanks for your comment Caleb-
      Neily

      Reply
  3. Caroline Castillo

    Great article, your blog gives an importance to be more careful and informed on what you read and order online.

    Reply
    • Neily

      Most definitely – glad you found it helpful!
      Neily

      Reply
  4. Arthritis vitamins

    Really cool article. I read your posts fairly often and you always do a good job articulating whatever topic you’re blogging about. Really interesting AND informative, Absolutely adored this post, Thanks so much, this blog post has such great points. Keep up the great work! Thanks again

    Reply
  5. Claudia Vasquez

    This post has made me double think about Keto! love your blog!!

    Reply
    • Neily

      Thanks Claudia – glad you enjoy it!
      Neily

      Reply
  6. Mark Cloer

    Read the “Term and Conditions”, if you can find them, and you will see it is a subscription. You will be seeing additional charges within a short time. Of course you can cancel ongoing orders/charges but gettin refunded the original charge is next to impossible. Ask me how I know….

    Reply
    • Neily

      Okay Mark…I’ll bite…how do you know? 😉
      Neily

      Reply
  7. Susan

    I was recently scammed by the keto / shark tank scam 🙁 I agreed to a 30 day free trail – pay just the shipping cost. The my credit card company notified me of an $89.00 charge from the company x 2 🙁
    They are nothing but thieves and scammers – they agreed to refund me $100. Total absolute complete scammers – their is nothing that says your entering into a subscription – I have notified my credit card and will take it from there. Plus the product is crap and does NOT work !!!!!

    Reply
    • Neily

      So sorry Susan…you and many others 🙁
      Neily

      Reply
  8. Diana

    Im a new victim of them. I clicked the promo keto and suddenly i got charge $199. I never join the monthly subscription and im ended $389 bill. Tried to contact the customer service but they dont really help me. Only apoligize and said i cant cancel because they already ship it. Its zo frustating…

    Reply
  9. Christine Marie Carlin

    I ordered a bottle from ketogenic valley as I heard all of the shark tank investors invested in this product so I thought it was reliable. They offered a free bottle if you paid shipping and handling. I paid $6.95 and all of a sudden over two weeks later they are charging my card $85. Thankfully it was declined because I used a card that never has money on it however now I have to worry about it being charged again. Buyers beware!!

    Reply
    • Neily

      Glad you used the card you did Christine! Thanks for sharing your experience.
      Neily

      Reply
    • Ashi

      I have been scammed too 🙁
      I locked my credit card to prevent further transactions. I’m not sure if I should unlock my card or just get another credit card.

      Reply
      • Neily

        I’m so sorry that happened – I think you’d be best served by canceling your card! (Better safe than sorry!)
        -Neily

        Reply
  10. Miriam Medina

    I was taken by Keto company. Less than 14 days I cancelled for keto pills and detox was not ordered came first. Paid $4.91 than $4.76 for the on 2-6 -20. I never used either because I am a diabetic. I canceled the order on 2-20-20 with Reinsurer I gave them all information. After the girl said everything will be okay I was charged on my credit card close to $100. I called with no help. I am out almost $100.00 for was supposed to be free. What can I do.PNC wants to to file paperwork for something I didn’t authorize.

    Reply
    • Neily

      I’m so sorry Miriam…but good news, another reader posted this just a few days ago:

      UPDATE: I just received my full refund of $280.00 from the supervisor of Ketobhbreal.com
      Customer care after several emails and sitting on hold for 30 min. I bought one bottle of $29.95 yesterday and today 1 day later I received a full refund. I fold them my bank has been notified and so has the BBB for their fraudulent company. Praise the Lord I got it back!!

      Keep fighting!
      Neily

      Reply
  11. Nash

    I am a victim of this too I seen a ad for a free bottle just pay shipping then they asked if I wanted another bottle for free too and just pay shipping, all together it was 13 to 14 dollars and I did get the pill no problem at all, now a month later yesterday they charged me full price for both pills and took 180 dollars out of my bank account and took all of my grocery money that I had to afford for 2 weeks….

    Reply
    • Neily

      I’m so sorry that happened. I wish you would have seen my info before you were taken advantage. Call your bank and the company but be DILIGENT about it until it is corrected. And PLEASE share this info with others.
      Neily

      Reply
    • Trudy Lowe

      Nash I also fill for that one. I never got any product.
      The transactions on my account say, CHS*Keto Stop out of Ocala, Fl. No phone number that I can find. Also CHSBuyKetoFi out of Los Angeles, and now CHS*NewHealth out of Los Angeles. From what Ive read today, these companies sell my name and card info to other similar companies. I have gotten nothing from any of these companies except charged over $200 from three different companies. None of which can I find a phone number to call.

      Reply
  12. Shan

    I woke up on 4-3 to a $200 charge, immediately called card issuer to handle it (they did), then today got a mystery package of god only knows what kind of pills that had an order date of 4-1. I never visited any site “Real Keto Health,” never ordered a sample, nothing. Just one hell of a scam.

    Reply
    • Neily

      Ugh – so sorry Shan. Indeed it IS one hell of a scam. Don’t beat yourself up…lesson learned. But maybe share the message with others!
      Thanks for your comment –
      Neily

      Reply
  13. Sonya Wright

    Is there a number to this company I woke up this morning to 200 missing out of my account I used cash card so I contacted them but that’s like paying with cash

    Reply
    • Neily

      Sonya – So sorry that happened to you. Unfortunately I do not have any info (numbers etc). My post was simply warning people and making them aware. Please follow the suggestions I had in the post (near the bottom). Good luck
      Neily

      Reply
  14. Tina

    I also have been scammed. I Purchased it thinking I was only going to pay $40 when I had $280 taken out of my account. I have sent multiple emails with no response. I have called many times nobody answers the phone and tells me to leave a message. This is a total scam.

    Reply
  15. Laurie

    This happened to me also! Starcutter diet company had a trial and all I had to do is pay the shipping $8.90. Next thing I know is they are charging my account for $89.96 every couple of days. I had my bank stop payments and do an investigation and they keep trying to charge my account every couple of days! Beware of these kinds of companies!!!!

    Reply
  16. Gwen Barker

    Yes my name is gwen barker i thought i was getting 2 bottles for 39 dollars and they charged my card 280 dollars i sent the package back unopened and that cost 15 bucks after a couple weeks they said they got it back and was working on my my refund its going on 3 months and nothing cant call no one there have emailed several times no one will get back to me i have been ripped off if some 0ne can help me cal gwen 714 868 9197

    Reply
    • Neily

      Gwen, I’m so sorry that happened to you 🙁. But I don’t have any affiliation with the companies.
      This is some of the advice I offered in the post…
      1. Go to your bank (or call them) to make a report.
      2. Contact the company immediately. Legitimate companies will (should!) have willing customer service reps.
      3. Keep documentation of everything—numbers you call, names of people you speak to, time and date you call, etc.
      4. (for future online purchases) Use a virtual or prepaid credit card. Several card issuers offer them, for example Citibank
      5. Review your bank and credit card activity online regularly (don’t wait for monthly statements).
      6. Contact the FTC and file a report.
      7. Contact the BBB and make a report.
      8. Follow up, follow up, follow up.

      Be diligent and good luck. Again, I’m sorry
      Neily

      Reply
  17. Barbara Coon

    Please cancel

    Reply
    • Neily

      Barbara- I’m sorry but there is nothing I can do if you are referring to an order you placed. In my post I wrote this:

      PLEASE NOTE…if you have been scammed, I’m so sorry but there is nothing I can do to help get your money back.
      That is why I wrote this post and another Dietary Supplements: The truth about the pills you’re popping. You might need to cancel your credit card.

      Reply
  18. Jean Sawyer

    OMG!!!
    I have been charged for something I did NOT order and they have kept $100.00.
    I fall into the category of the elderly fool!!

    Reply
    • Neily

      So sorry Jean! And don’t be so hard on yourself… 🙁
      Looking at all the comments to this post and this post you are far from alone!
      Neily

      Reply
  19. Dan lapping

    Ok 1=877-445-0027..demand a 100 percent refund or you will call the atty general and file a lawsuit if your demands arent
    I just went around with this sticker replacing thieving sob.s theyll off 25 .then 50 percent than 75 of your refund stick it to them dont swear dont talk much just demand they will try n bs you dont allow it it’s either put back on your card or lawsuit and atty general ..worked for me n were still reporting they wanted our recorded word we wouldnt sue..lol met

    Reply
  20. FLOYD M ROUNDY

    I guess I’m lucky! my credit card company refused the charge, twice, and notified me. I had to cancel my CC and I haven’t received any product. One note that should have caused me trouble is that when I entered my credit card it refused to process it and said it was incorrect. so I entered it again and it did the same thing. Notice! It charged me twice for the 199 dollars.
    Learned my lesson. I notices some Keto supplements on Consumer reports but I’m scared to buy them. I have one the doctor gave me. different ingredients but I know who I’m dealing with.

    Reply
    • Neily

      Thanks for you message Floyd! So it looks like even though you got charged twice, your credit card company refused? Maybe they’re catching on to these scams. The only way the CC companies will know is if they are made aware.
      Neily

      Reply

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