Online shopping scams are becoming more common, more intense, and more widespread. This is happening because scammers’ tactics have evolved in response to technological advancements and to people’s openness to buy online. They pose as well-known brands and open bogus stores and websites. They also make promises such as gift cards to entice people to give them money. The number of people who shop on social media platforms is also growing, as people easily connect with strangers on these platforms.
Unfortunately, many victims are repeatedly duped. Scammers take advantage of the fact that people do not use good authentication measures and exploit their vulnerabilities.
Protect yourself from online shopping and social media scams
Businesses can use social media to connect with customers and build brand loyalty. Keep in mind, however, that social media is the main ground for scammers take advantage of people. If you are cautious and watch for warning signs, you can avoid being duped. Expert international private investigators advise people to double-check a company’s profile before purchasing anything based on social media posts. Most famous brands will indicate in their official websites their ongoing sales campaigns, their delivery and returns policies, as well as how they track orders. Check all that apply to your purchase, and make sure the website uses safe payment methods and has privacy policies in place.
Identifying online shopping scams
Online sellers can be dishonest and try to dupe you into purchasing fake goods, and it’s hard to spot scammers on your own without a proper background check investigation. If your intended purchase is taking place in a foreign country and for a significant amount, consider investing in an international background check before buying. Wymoo International investigators often help people who are looking to make sizeable purchases of antiques, jewels and other rare products with high monetary value, by verifying if the sellers are in fact authentic and in possession of said product or asset.
If you don’t consider a background check necessary because your purchase won’t account for a lot of money, it is still important to make sure you check the seller’s reputation and reviews. It will be difficult to find reliable reviews in Facebook Marketplace or Instagram, since many sellers in these platforms are one-time sellers only. In these cases, be wary of aggressive sales tactics and of people who refuse to provide complete information. Anything involving crypto currency should be regarded as high risk, as there is no way the money you pay can be traced or recovered once it hits the scammer’s wallet. Sellers can set up a fake account in minutes and no one will be accountable for the crime.
Keep in mind that spam plays a large role in online shopping scams too. Avoid clicking on meaningless freebies ads and on shipping notifications in email links. If you do not know the source of the email, simply delete it and don’t open it or its attachments.
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