June 4, 2018

Online Scammers Are All Over The Net

Time and time again we hear of people transferring hundreds if not thousands of dollars in good faith to sellers online with the intention of buying their dream caravan or RV only to discover that they have been scammed!

Recently a number of Gumtree vehicle dealer accounts were hacked into including our own, even with the most secure account settings. The hacker offered vehicles at prices so low that it would tempt anyone to make an enquiry. Unfortunately, as always, it’s a case of ‘it’s too good to be true’. We have since rectified the situation with Gumtree and they have undertaken the appropriate measures to ensure no one can hack into any of their client’s accounts.

I’d like to point out a few ways in which these people are running these scams. It doesn’t matter what it is you are buying… an RV, golf clubs, a push bike, you name it, if you come across any advertisement on any classified sites that are using any of these techniques, simply avoid them or report them.

Typical scam type scenarios we see all the time:

  1. Not providing any contact phone number and only communicating via email (often an email address without any names or reputable company domains).
  2. Mentioning they are ‘overseas’ or ‘away’ and can only be contacted via email.
  3. Offering to freight the vehicle at YOUR expense. This basically sets you up to lose money on the freight charge. This is a common one for buyers AND sellers.
  4. Having pictures in the ads advising to avoid the sellers contacts and contact another email directly (This is the case for our Gumtree classifieds, screen shot included)
  5. Asking for deposits without speaking on the phone or meeting in person.
  6. SMS messaging with very vague details and no name or Australian contact number.
  7. Request for PayPal information, although PayPal is one of the worlds safest payment gateways. (In my 10+ years of retailing RV’s I’ve never had someone pay me using PayPal.)

So next time you’re searching on classified sites please be mindful of who the seller really is and if the deal seems to be “too good to be true”, it most likely is.