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Of Scams, Recalls & 'Net Safety

Steering your kids clear of the Internet's pornnography, a Y2K scam and the latest product recalls. These are some consumer issues followed by CBS News Consumer Correspondent Herb Weisbaum this week.


The year 2000 and the arrival of the dreaded Y2K bug are just five months away.

The first big Y2K scam surfaced this week but probably not the last. A Canadian telemarketer agreed to pay $100,000 to settle charges in a credit card protection scheme. The Federal Trade Commission says the company was selling stickers that were supposed to protect credit cards against any kind of Y2K problem.

The FCC says most credit card companies are ready for the year 2000. And even if yours isn't, those stickers are worthless, the agency says.



A couple of important recalls were announced this week:

One is for disposable utility lighters, the long-nosed butane lighters used to start a barbecue. The lighters are made by Ecko Housewares. The trouble is they can ignite around the trigger, burning your hand. The words "gas torch" are on the barrel. If you have one, throw it out, or take it back for a refund.

The other recall involves infant outfits with a plastic cherry on the front. The cherry can end up stuck in the baby's throat. A company called Little Me made these minifruit girl's rompers. You can return them for a refund, or send them back to the company for a refund and a coupon good toward a future purchase. Go to www.littleme.com.



Are you worried about keeping your kids safe as they explore the Internet? Check out a new Web site for parents. Getnetwise.org, sponsored by some leading online companies, explains how to prevent your kids from viewing pornography and other sites you'd like them to avoid. It also recommends safe sites for kids covering everything from entertainment to homework help.

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