Online Car Fraud
All one has to do is troll through the car auction listings on Ebay and you will see hundreds if not thousands of fraudulent listings. Online car fraud is another type of fraud. They stand out when you see a deal that is just too good to be true. There is no mention of a wreck or damage and it has low miles. This is because it is most likely a fraudulent listing.
Some you can quickly tell by the poor English in the listings description. Much of this online car fraud is from overseas. Don’t rely on the sellers feedback or country of origin as profiles have been bought and sold over the internet. Someone from Romania or Italy can easily use a bought or stolen Ebay profile with great feedback to lure unsuspecting buyers. They copy some pictures from the internet or another sellers listing and put a great price on the listing so it will sell quickly. Some buyers get so caught up in the low price that they become blind to the signs of this online car fraud:
1) Undisclosed flood and frame damage. This is a big one. Unscrupulous car dealers and body shops are selling crashed cars and flood cars, doctoring titles, not properly listing damages and repairs done to make a quick dollar. With the advent of over the internet sales which are basically done sight unseen and based on seller reputation and feedback crooks are coming out in droves. Just search for car fraud on Google or Yahoo. You will see thousands of articles, victims, etc…Be careful and do your homework. Don’t send payment or sign any paperwork until you see and checkout the car.
2) Emails that don’t go through Ebay or Yahoo Auctions (Many of these fraudulent transactions have occurred because someone emails a bidder that is not the winning bidder and tells them they are and to send them their last bid price – All Ebay transactions will have winning bidder notifications from and through the Ebay email system).
3) Inspections and Emissions. The other important point is if the car can has passed inspection in your state. I can not state this is enough – every state has its own inspection and emission requirements.
4) Also watch out for fraudulent promises as they are an inevitable part of online car fraud. Car salespeople at car dealerships are notorious for this. Get any promises in writing. If the car has a warranty and what is actually covered can be quite different from what the salesperson says. Remember, the salesperson doesn’t care about you and only wants a quick sale. You must make sure it has the warranty you desire.
5) Fraudulent escrow services (look for contact information and contact them. Also look for poor English and bad phone numbers).
6) Poor English throughout the listing description.
Online car fraud is here to stay. Take a few minutes to dig deeper into the deal. See if it is or even seems fraudulent or fishy. If it is don’t go through with it. As the old adage says, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” There are many good sellers and even car dealers out there, but there are just as many fraudulent sellers and dealers that you need to watch out for. Don’t become a victim of online car fraud.