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February 10, 2017

Posted  February 10, 2017

The operators of two online “high schools” have agreed to settle FTC charges that they falsely claimed to be accredited schools but actually were little more than diploma mills that sold worthless pieces of paper. The settlements resolve charges the FTC brought in February 2016 against Capitol Network Distance Learning Programs and Stepping Stonez Development, LLC, two separate diploma mills that used names like Capitol High School, Aberdeen Academy, West Madison Falls High School, Columbia Northern High School, and Heritage Western High School. Under the terms of the settlements, the defendants are banned from marketing or selling any academic degree or certification programs. The orders also prohibit them from making misrepresentations about any product or service, including claims about the performance of any product or service, the use of testimonials, and accreditations or endorsements. FTC