Buyer Beware! Don’t Be Fooled by Online-Only Certification Card Scams.

A Public Service announcement from the Health & Safety Institute and the National Safety Council

They’re everywhere on the web...seemingly legitimate organizations selling online CPR, first aid, BLS and ACLS training with downloadable “instant” certification cards to people who need them for work. And, it's often stated right on those websites that their "100% online" certification card is “nationally accepted." It is not. Practical skill evaluations are a necessary part of all courses offered by reputable organizations issuing certification cards. Every recognized major sponsor of emergency care training programs in the United States has in place a credible, documented process for practical skills exams for all participants prior to permitting a certification card to be issued. Don't waste your money buying a certification card online that won't meet your employer or state licensing agency requirements. Read more about sham certification card mills here.



TooGoodtobeTrueCommon online certification card scam buzzwords and phrases

  • Free Instant Certification Card
  • 100% Online CPR Certification Card
  • Download Your Free Wallet Certification Card Instantly
  • Nationally Accepted Certification Card
  • Online First Aid and CPR Recertification Card
  • Print Your Official Wallet Certification Card Instantly
  • No hands-on skills test required

  • No need to attend classes in person

  • Pass the online exam and get your certification card, signed by a professional instructor, today

Online training is a valid way to learn 

Quality online training and education (known as eLearning) developed by experts has long been recognized as a valid and accepted way to learn. If you don't need a legitimate certification card from a bona fide, reputable organization to document your knowledge and skill competency, or you are not required, expected, designated or obligated to provide emergency care in your workplace, online training can you help you develop important health and safety knowledge to enhance your career or advance your personal well-being.



Take Action!


File a Complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)


When consumers see or hear an advertisement, whether it’s on the Internet,  radio or television or anywhere else, federal law says that ads must be truthful, not misleading and, when appropriate, backed by scientific evidence. The Federal Trade Commission enforces these truth-in-advertising laws, and it applies the same standards no matter where an ad appears. Complaints help the FTC and other law enforcement agencies bring scam artists to justice and put an end to unfair and misleading business practices.


If you have a complaint, file it online at or call 1-877-FTC-HELP.