Fake massage chair and scooter websites
WA ScamNet has received a number of reports from consumers who have tried to purchase massage chairs, mobility scooters and children’s scooters from various websites, and never received the products.
The following websites are identified as scams:
Consumer Protection works to have any scam websites shut down as soon as possible.
The websites look similar, with just a variation on the name. All websites have the registrant information hidden and have been active for around 30 days.
Reviews of the websites reveal many consumers purchasing products and never receiving them. The products are very cheap, and would appear to be a ‘great deal’ for a consumer to purchase.
Some of the websites have had advertisements on Facebook pages. These have been reported to Facebook. The pages did not include much information, but invited consumers to click on a link to a website.
The method of payment is via credit card only. Most consumers are seeking charge backs through their credit card providers.
Tips to avoid fake websites
Be wary of ‘great deals’ served to you via an internet search or pop-ups. Scammers hope to catch you out when you impulse buy, for example because of the promise of a bargain.
Be suspicious of sites you haven’t heard of before or that haven’t been online for long (copyright 2017 at the bottom for example).
- Consider the risks if there is no physical address, phone contact details or ABN.
- Watch out for sites asking for insecure payment methods (direct bank transfer or wire transfer).
- Protect yourself by using known reputable sites and paying by a secure system (padlocked) with credit card or Paypal, which provides you with an opportunity to seek a chargeback if you don’t get what you paid for.
- Use the internet to search for reviews before buying from a website as this will often reveal consumer blog threads exposing scam sites, or indeed one of Consumer Protection’s warnings.
- Be aware scammers create copycat sites of real online businesses. Pixelated photos can be a sign of this.
- Remember it’s hard to enforce the Australian Consumer Law if an online business is overseas.
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