Protecting Yourself Against Counterfeit Coupons

All you coupon clippers out there, I wanted to give you a heads up that there are some fake coupons going around right now that you should be aware of.  A few of these coupons include Odwalla Superfood Products, Post Cereals, Bryers Ice Cream, Dove Body Wash, Bertolli Olive Oil, and DiGiorno Brand Pizzas.  Some of these coupons seem to come from trusted sources as they say things like “SmartSource” on them, but they are fakes. 


How can you prevent yourself from attempting to use fake coupons?


First of all check to make sure there is a barcode on the coupon.  A lot of fake coupons will not contain a barcode while others try to trick you by including a fake code that will not work with a barcode scanner.  It’s harder to determine if a coupon is a fake based on a fake barcode until you try to use it in the store, so always remember that if you don’t receive your coupons from a trusted site you can still end up with a fake.  To avoid fakes the best sources for coupons are directly from the manufacturer’s website or trusted coupon sites that require you to use special software to print coupons, such as and


Many fake coupons also do not contain an expiration date.  Unless you receive the coupon directly from the manufacturer if it has no expiration date consider it a fake. 


You should also keep an eye out for coupons that offer free items or a discounted amount that seems unreasonable.  Any coupons received via email should be treated as fakes because most valid coupons cannot be printed directly from your email (unless received from the manufacturer). 


Last but not least, if you’re ever concerned that your coupon may be a fake you can check it against the CIC’s list of known counterfeit coupons.  Fake coupons are added to the list daily as they are discovered.