Recent news and events in respect to Tide detergent thefts and allegations that Tide detergent samples could contain Anthrax spores, may indicate that Tide products may be used for sinister purposes in the near future. These free samples are plastic, sealed and could be theoretically be laced with Anthrax. Tide samples are sent out all over America, and if tainted, could potentially infect millions of people.
By dispersing highly contagious pathogens via the U.S. Postal Service, the bio-terror pandemic will appear highly contagious and able to spread great distances without intimate contact. One the public panic is in play, people will line up all across America to take the tainted vaccines which will ultimately be the cause of millions of deaths.
Date: January 6, 2012
Source: KRTV 3 News
Abstract: Last year during the first week of January, we received several comments on the KXLH Facebook page about whether we know anything about samples of the laundry detergent Tide being contaminated with anthrax.
"My mom just gt a forward saying that theres anthrax in tide samples coming in the mail....do you know if its true?
Have you heard anything about Anthrax poison in the Tide packet being sent in the mail. CNN has reported that just want to know if it true!"
And this year - again, during the first week of January - the number of search queries about this urban legend have spiked.
You can relax and continue doing the laundry: there are no reported instances of Tide - or any other common household cleaning products - being contaminated with anthrax.
This urban legend has been making the rounds via e-mail for several
years, and started shortly after the real anthrax attacks in 2001.
For some reason, it has started circulating again - this time via e-mail, text message, and online forums - as reported at Snopes.com, one of the leading sites in debunking urban legends:
"A variant of this scare which began circulating in mid-2010 cautioned about mailed samples of Tide brand detergent supposedly containing anthrax. In January 2011, that scare was spread by text messages sent to cell phones, some of them asserting "It was on CNN today!"
Here are several variants of the message, as reported on the Urban Legends section of About.com:
"IMPORTANT FWD: Anthrax poison in Tide detergent packs coming thru the
mail do not open or use. 7 ppl dead already. Plz pass it on!!!
Anthrax Poison in Tide Detergent packs coming thru the mail do not open or use. 7 people dead already. Please pass it on. IT WAS ON CNN
Just got a forward saying "Anthrax poison in Tide detergent packs coming thru the mail. Do not open or use, 7 people dead already. Please pass this on. It was on CNN yesterday." Has anyone else heard this?"
I was informed that if you get any Tide samples don't open it. Its contaminated with Anthrax. 7 people have died so far. CNN is reporting don't open any sample of washing powder.
So many people have fallen victim to believing that the message is
true that even Tide officials weighed in last year, posting on a Tide
online message board (since deactivated):
As many of you have noticed, the Tide Anthrax Hoax message has started to circulate again.
I would like to confirm that this is definitely a hoax, any Tide samples coming through the mail are completely safe.
We appreciate your support in helping us eliminate this rumor by sharing the fact that it is a hoax or directing people to this page for more information.
If you are concerned or want further reassurance please contact our Consumer Relations team on: 1-800-879-8433.
(KRTV 3 News, 2012).
Title: “Anthrax In Tide Detergent” Rumor Is
Just A Hoax
Date: January 7, 2011
Abstract: A rumor being seen on social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook is absolutely false according to a Proctor and Gamble representative.
The rumor that is being spread is that Tide samples have been sent out which contain the bioterrorism agent, anthrax, which has killed at least 7 people. It has even been claimed that it was reported on CNN. A search of the CNN website came up empty of such a story.
According to a statement from one P&G employee:“I work for the Tide brand, I can 100% confirm that the text message going around is not true. From time to time people do this kind of thing as a prank, unfortunately there is little we can do other than to share the fact that this is completely unfounded. If you are concerned or want further reassurance please contact our Consumer Relations team on: 1-800-879-8433″ (Examiner, 2011).
Title: Anthrax In Tide Urban Legend Resurfaces
Date: January 10, 2012
Source: Bio Prep Watch
Abstract: An urban legend about the existence of samples of Tide laundry detergent containing anthrax has resurfaced again in internet queries and online forums.
Despite there being no reported instances of Tide or any other household cleaning products being tainted with anthrax, the legend has resurfaced via email, text message and social media websites, according to KRTV.com.
The first instances of the rumor are believed to have occurred shortly after the 2001 anthrax attacks. The legend faded, only to resurface again nearly a decade later.
“A variant of this scare which began circulating in mid-2010 cautioned about mailed samples of Tide brand detergent supposedly containing anthrax,” Snopes.com, a website dedicated to debunking urban legends, reports. “In January 2011, that scare was spread by text messages sent to cell phones, some of them asserting ‘It was on CNN today!’”
Tide officials, concerned by the potential negative impact of the rumors, released a statement in order to reassure customers that their product was entirely safe.“As many of you have noticed, the Tide Anthrax Hoax message has started to circulate again,” a Tide public relations official said, KRTV.com reports. “I would like to confirm that this is definitely a hoax, any Tide samples coming through the mail are completely safe” (Bio Prep Watch, 2012).
Title: Police Take On Rising Wave Of Tide Detergent Theft
Date: March 12, 2012
Source: Fox News
Abstract: Law enforcement officials across the US have been left baffled by a crime wave targeting an unlikely item -- Tide laundry detergent.
Theft of Tide detergent has become so rampant that some cities are setting up special task forces to stop it and retailers like CVS are taking special security precautions to lock down the liquid.
One Tide thief in West St. Paul, Minn., stole $25,000 of the product over 15 months before he was arrested last year.
"That was unique that he stole so much soap," said West St. Paul Police Chief Bud Shaver.
"The name brand is [all] Tide. Amazing, huh?"
Tide has become a form of currency on the streets. The retail price is steadily high -- roughly $10 to $20 a bottle -- and it's a staple in households across socioeconomic classes.
Tide can go for $5 to $10 a bottle on the black market, authorities say, and some thieves even resell it to stores.
"There's no serial numbers and it's impossible to track," said Detective Larry Patterson of the Somerset, Ky., Police Department, where authorities have seen a huge spike in Tide theft. "It's the item to steal" (Fox News, 2012).
Title: Police Say Reports Of Nationwide Spike In Tide Thefts Doesn't Wash
Date: March 13, 2012
Source: Fox News
Abstract: Police and retailers are pushing back against a report claiming that theft of Tide laundry detergent is on the rise nationwide and that some cities are devising special task forces to crack down on the alleged phenomenon.
The Daily, an iPad publication, reported Monday that authorities from New York to Oregon are combating a new wave of Tide theft at popular retail stores, like CVS and Walmart. The story quickly spread virally across the Internet, and was even the subject of a segment Tuesday on ABC's "Good Morning America."
While police acknowledge that name-brand household items are commonly swiped from store shelves, authorities in at least two states referenced by the publication say they have not seen a specific rise in stolen Tide detergent.
Lt. Matt Swenke of the West St. Paul Police Department in Minnesota described laundry detergent as a "needed commodity" – much like baby formula and toilet paper – that he said is often a target for shoplifters looking to profit by reselling the items to privately-owned retail stores.
He referenced one case of a man suspected of stealing $25,000 worth of Tide detergent from a Walmart in West St. Paul over a 15-month period. He said the man, identified as 53-year-old Patrick Costanzo, was seen on surveillance video stocking up his shopping cart with various items, including Tide, and walking out of the store without paying.
But, Swenke said, "We haven’t noticed anything in terms of this being a rising problem." He said of the five major retailers in the West St. Paul area, only one store – Walmart – came forward to police about thousands of dollars of missing Tide inventory believed to have been taken by Costanzo.
"As of yet, we have not been contacted by any of our larger retail establishments," Swenke told FoxNews.com. "I don’t know any other jurisdictions in Minnesota that have had that volume."
Authorities in Kentucky also backed away from the claim that Tide theft is on the rise.
Lt. Shannon Smith of the Somerset Police Department recalled a case from 2011 in which three individuals were charged with shoplifting from Cincinnati-based Kroger stores as well as from a local Walmart. Smith says the alleged shoplifters made off with several items, including Tide detergent, and then sold them on the black market to small, privately-owned stores.
"People are stealing to resell the items to other less professional retail establishments," he said.
Smith and other law enforcement officials acknowledge that name-brand goods, like Tide, are easily converted to cash on the black market. A $20 shoplifted bottle of Tide, for instance, could be sold illegally for $10 – more than the sale of a lesser-known, generic brand.
"Tide is highly recognizable," former FBI Special Agent Brad Garrett told ABC's "Good Morning America" on Tuesday. "It's very difficult to trace and it's easily resold."
"It’s the demand that the retail establishments are putting out there on the black market that drives this whole thing,” added Smith. “They can demand more money at the point of sale for a bottle of Tide than they can for a generic brand," he said, though he stressed that Tide theft, in particular, is no more widespread in the Somerset area than theft of other popular household items.
Retailers, meanwhile, also are denying reports of a new spike in stolen Tide products.
"We are not experiencing a 'wave' of Tide thefts," CVS/pharmacy public relations director Mike DeAngelis wrote in email to FoxNews.com.
"In a few markets, we've placed security devices on Tide bottles that will trigger an alarm if a shoplifter tries to remove it from the store without paying," DeAngelis said. "However, theft of Tide is not a new issue in the retail industry."
The Daily had no comment on the story. The
Daily and FoxNews.com are both owned by News Corporation (Fox
Title: Tide Theft Tied To Drug Trade?
Date: March 13, 2012
Source: ABC News
Abstract: It’s being called a “grime wave,” a rash of thefts targeting Tide laundry detergent.
Near Mineapolis, cameras caught 53-year-old Patrick Costanzo stealing more than $25,000 worth of the product over the course of 15 months.
“It’s like he put the pieces in there like Tetris pieces. He maximized that cart, there’s no wasted space,” said investigator Sean Melville of the West St. Paul police.
Costanzo would load up his cart and push right past workers. He’d also take paper towels, soda and toilet paper.
“There’s no way he can be using,” said Melville. “I hope for his own sake he’s not using that much toilet paper everyday.”
Authorities finally put an end to the sudsy spree, but with a retail price from $10 to $20 this household laundry staple has become a kind of currency of the streets. It can sell on the black market for half the price and with no serial number it’s impossible to track.
“Tide is highly recognizable, it’s very difficult to trace and it’s easily resold,” said Brad Garrett, former FBI special agent.
According to law enforcement officials, the Procter & Gamble clothes cleaner has become part of the dirty drug trade. A recent drug sting in Maryland turned up more Tide than cocaine and according to police it was not just one guy, but an organization that would hit four to five stores a day.
“It may be more financially viable for the drug dealer to exchange Tide for drugs and then resell the Tide,” Garrett told ABC News.
Using video surveillance and undercover officers, police in Prince George’s County, Md., arrested 18 people after being contacted by a Safeway about thefts.
CVS stores have even
put Tide on lockdown, saying drug users have targeted Tide in much the same way
they have targeted flu medications (ABC
Title: Prince George’s County Police Bust Tide Laundry Detergent Theft Ring
Date: March 23, 2012
Source: CBS News
Abstract: A bizarre theft ring is broken up by police in Maryland. Tide laundry detergent was stolen and sold on the black market. Thieves have been cleaning out stores across the country.
Kai Jackson has more on the arrests.
Across the country, thieves are targeting laundry detergent and other store items. But in Prince George’s County, it was no clean getaway. The thieves were caught.
Laundry detergent is a key product in a major theft ring in Prince George’s County.
Police seized $125,000 worth of merchandise at a barber shop. Among the items confiscated was Tide detergent.
“There are some stores that will no longer sell the product because it gets stolen just that often,” said Julie Parker, director of Media Relations for the Prince George’s County Police Department.
In some cities, the detergent has become like liquid gold on the streets.
Over the years, the containers of suds have gotten bigger and more expensive. Police say the money made from selling it on the street is often used for drugs or simply to make a buck.
“If they’re stealing it to sell, they must be trading the profit for drugs,” East Baltimore resident Gloss Moore said.
Detergent may be popular among thieves right now but residents WJZ spoke with say anything of value could be a target during tough economic times.
“If there’s a market for it, they’re gonna take it and they’re gonna try and sell it,” John Manna, a resident of East Baltimore, said.
Some stores are considering putting sensors on laundry detergent and other store items to protect more of their merchandise.
Police say stolen
detergent is so hard to trace because the bottles don’t carry serial numbers (CBS