The Valkee-HumanCharger swindle is a health fraud scam from Finland. Under the names HumanCharger and Valkee 2, the company Valkee Oy sells a simple set of two LED earplugs, a timer and a rechargeable battery for EUR200. They claim that this "light headset" cures a multitude of symptoms and diseases, like migraine, jet lag, and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), in nearly all cases.
Other scams of this kind, like magnet therapy or zappers, simply claim to have wonder effects. Valkee instead produced a profound pool of pseudoscience, junk studies and fabricated results. Mimicking true research, they were able to deceive the media in Finland and abroad. Although completely meeting all criteria of a classic scam, it was even promoted by ill-advised politicians. The company, posing as a health tech start-up, attracted private investors, and considerable amounts of money got burned.
On the other hand, the Valkee case is also exceptional because studies showed that the device does not work. Inefficacy was demonstrated for Seasonal Affective Disorder, and an effect in jet lag has been ruled out. Other negative trials show that Valkee's earlight does not influence cognitive performance, blood pressure, and melatonin levels, indicating inefficacy on the internal clock.
The swindle was busted in 2012 in Finland, and Valkee was awarded the HuuHaa (flim-flam) prize for the earlight device. Having lost their home market, Valkee is trying elsewhere to trick people into buying this expensive toy, which has been renamed to HumanCharger to make the earlier fail harder to find online. Their scheme is still protected by the language barrier. This website documents the swindle.
Valkee Ltd has a problem with criticism and tried to shut down this website.
CRUCIALLY IMPORTANT: the #valkeeleaks series.