Online Shopping Scams

Online Shopping Scams

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Most of the time buying and selling on eBay, Gumtree and other such online shopping auction sites can be great. However, you will find there are a number of online shopping scams that you need to beware of. Take a look below at the most common scams on auction sites.


Scam 1- Payment through a wire transfer

You should never consider a wire transfer when carrying out online shopping unless you have the actual merchandise in your possession. Otherwise, you risk the possibility of being scammed by the seller. The best course of action is to do cash on collection or pay through PayPal.

Scam 2 – Fake PayPal account

This online shopping scam targets the seller. Sometimes, you get an email that says the buyer has made a payment to your PayPal account. So it makes sense for you to go ahead and mail the product since the buyer has paid.  The problem is: this email is not from the actual PayPal company. It was a fake email, making it appear as if the buyer paid the invoice. When you check your PayPal account later, you discover there was no payment made. To remedy this problem, make sure the balance is in your PayPal account by actually checking it before you ship the product.

Scam 3 – Buying a photograph

This is the most agitating scam going around recently. A seller will list a popular item like a Macbook or Kindle Fire. Once the buyer wins the auction, the seller will send them a picture in a frame of the item, telling them that is what they were selling technically.

Scam 4 – Cancelled postage

This scam occurs when you are planning on shipping the product you are selling. The buyer contacts you and says he/she would rather collect it than have it shipped. They pay via PayPal for the product, and you agree to meet in persona and deduct the postage cost. However, a few days later, the buyer requests a refund and say they have not received the item. Since eBay and PayPal have record of a transaction with potential postage, they will need you to prove that you sent the product through the mail, which you won’t be able to do. Now, you have to refund the money and a postage fee they never paid you. A pretty clever online shopping scam!

Scam 5 – Selling Someone else’s listing

The buyer pays for an expensive product like a computer or car, and the seller encourages the buyer to make payment outside of eBay. When the buyer goes to collect the product, the car is there, but the buyer has no clue who you are and even lets you know that he/she was not selling the product on eBay. If they were selling it on eBay, they don’t have a record of you paying for it. So then you realize the person who sold the product duplicated someone else’s actual listing from somewhere—whether it was eBay or not. And now, this person has your money.




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