If you have been shopping online, you must be familiar with the infamous automatic billing strategy. With the many horrifying stories of people who have had their saving accounts cleaned by an erratic automatic billing, consumers have become very wary of this system. Today, very few people are willingly allowing an unknown seller to make automatic charges on their accounts.
Even as consumers continue to gain awareness of the dangers of erratic recurring billing, the scammers have upped their game to include other sophisticated methods. Below are some of the online sales scams that you should be wary.
Selling a photograph instead of the real item.
In this sales scam, the seller lists a high demand item on a site such as eBay at a ridiculously low price. An unsuspecting buyer then bids for the item, and once the payments have been completed, the seller posts a printed photograph of the item claiming that it was what the listing was all about.
To avoid this type of sales scam, ensure that you have read the listing thoroughly before making a purchase. Also, if there is no explanation as to why the item is selling at a very low price, you have a reason to be suspicious.
Payments from a fake PayPal accounts.
If you are selling an item online, you must be careful of falling into the fake PayPal account trap. In this type of scam, the seller receives a PayPal confirmation email that the buyer has paid, only to realize after sending the goods that email was a fake, and no money was deposited in the account.
To avoid this type of sales scam, ensure that you check your PayPal account balance before sending the goods. Avoid clicking the links in the email for they might lead you to a fake PayPal account. If you are selling on eBay, be suspicious if you receive the PayPal email before the eBay sale notification.
A fake copycat listing.
Another way online scammers are stealing from buyers is through copycat listings. In this form of fraud, the scammer duplicates a real listing on sites such as Craiglist or eBay and poses as a real seller. Once a buyer is identified, the seller lures them to making a deal outside the listing site. The buyer makes payments only to realize that they were not dealing with the real seller, and they have been conned.
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This type of scam can be avoided by making payments on delivery. Also, ensure that you double check the sellers profile and ask them for more details and pictures of the item for sale.
The phone call collection.
In this type of online scam, an item for sale is listed with a shipping option. A buyer calls the seller and suggests that since he is in the area, he would rather collect it in person. The unsuspicious seller agrees, and the item is collected after the payments have been made through PayPal.
Days later, the buyer contacts PayPal requesting for a refund with a claim that the item was never shipped. Given that there is no evidence of shipping, PayPal assumes that the item was never delivered, and the reverse transaction is done. The seller cannot claim anything since they have no evidence of delivering the item.
To avoid this type of scam, stick to the shipping plan and ensure that you have evidence that the item has been delivered to the buyer.