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Parents Warn About Dangerous Counterfeits Of This Year's Hottest Christmas Toys

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There's no doubt that Fingerlings are this year's hottest Christmas toy, but if you're still shopping for one of these adorable baby monkeys, be careful.

When we shared our list of toys that would be on every child's Christmas list this year, Fingerlings stood out right away. The tiny animatronic critters blink, speak, and shriek when you flip them upside down, all while hanging onto your finger.

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And like Hatchimals last year, the toy has made big business for retailers, as parents are rushing to get this year's "Cabbage Patch" toy before they're all sold out.

But some parents are warning others to be on the lookout, after they were tricked into buying counterfeit Fingerlings. Even some reputable sites run by big stores aren't safe from the phony monkeys, as third party vendors have been unloading their counterfeit toys to clueless shoppers.

Yep, I was a victim of this! I purchased my Fingerlings in October and then was sent Fake ones! I got my money back and...

Posted by Lori Huffman on Wednesday, December 6, 2017

One mother described receiving a package with misspelled labels on her doorstep, with fake Fingerlings inside. When she handed the toys to her kids, she said the "color was leeching off the product onto their hands." While this parent got a full refund for her phony toys, you might not be so lucky.

That's why everyone should learn how to tell apart real and fake Fingerlings, to avoid being scammed.

WowWee, the company behind Fingerlings, has been working hard to stop Grinches from ruining Christmas.

Last week alone, they filed more than 160 lawsuits to stop counterfeit toymakers from selling their phony monkeys. Big online retailers like Amazon and Walmart.com also have "no tolerance" for the fake toys, but sellers are passing off the phony Fingerlings faster than they can catch them.

In fact, counterfeit versions of the toys have made Amazon's top sellers list multiple times already in the run-up to Christmas.

A phony Fingerling (left) compared to the real thing (right).@MalindaWilk / Twitter

Authorities also worry these toys might be dangerous, because in the past counterfeit toys contained lead, and unsafe electronics which have caught fire.

If you want to avoid being sold a fake Fingerling, here's what to watch out for:

  • Check the name on the packaging: counterfeiters use names like Happy Monkey, Fun Monkey, Finger Monkey, Baby Monkey, and lookalikes names including Fmgeblings.
  • The company name on the packaging should be WowWee.
  • Non-English labels on the front of the packaging are signs of fake toys.
  • The monkey on the packaging (at bottom left) should match the color of the one inside.
  • Fingerlings have a recommended price of $14.99, so any products much cheaper or more expensive are probably fake.
  • Remember to double-check your purchase before you wrap it for Christmas.

You can get a refund for fake products by contacting the seller's helpline, and you should also use the same process to report any fake sellers you see online.

Shop safe this Christmas! Share this warning with other parents!

[H/T: Good Housekeeping, USA Today]

I write about all sorts of things for Shared, especially weird facts, celebrity news, and viral stories.