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Fraud Alerts: Payment Scams

Payment scams involve false sellers trying to trick buyers into sending their hard-earned cash for items that just don’t exist.

But it’s such a good deal…

As the saying goes – if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is! Fraudsters will often list items in ‘as-new condition’ that are heavily under-priced or try to list items multiple times in order to draw in more buyers to their scam.

Other key identifying features of a false listing can include:

  • The seller is located overseas or interstate and must sell their item urgently
  • The seller will ask for a deposit by money transfer services such as Western Union
  • The sell will only correspond via email. if a phone number is provided for the listing, it does not work.

What can you do to avoid these scams?

  1. Choose a payment method you’re comfortable with. Make sure any payments you do make are traceable and/or refundable and that you are receive proof of purchase such as a receipt or email confirmation directly from the provider.
  2. Never send cash in the mail or by money transfer services such as Western Union.
  3. Ask the seller lots of questions about the item, they might not have included all the information you need to make an educated decision about purchasing their item in their advertisement.
  4. Ask to see the item in person before committing to purchasing it. This way you can confirm the item is genuine and see first hand what condition it is in.
  5. Read reviews of the item to compare prices and verify features. For example, check to be sure the price the seller is asking is reasonable and that the features they have listed are genuine.  Call (02) 8003 7016.
Report it to us. Help us fight scams by alerting us to anything suspicious as soon as possible. If you’ve received an email you believe to be from a false buyer we want to know about it.  Call (02) 8003 7016. 

Important: Ads that we consider to be false or misleading are removed from our sites. If you think you have spotted a false listing report this to us.  Call (02) 8003 7016.


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