The busiest shopping time of the season is almost here, and i’d like to point out a scam that has been going on in an effort to prevent any victims this year. I noticed something odd while shopping on Amazon, that there are 3rd party users selling brand new $1000+ items for half the price or less. I knew it sounded to good to be true, and in the description it says to email before ordering. So I pretended to be a victim and contacted them to see what the scam was and how they were doing it.
When they reply back they say they only have 1 left in stock, I assume to make you want to hurry up and buy it before it’s gone. They ask you for your shipping address, so they can send it to amazon for processing.
Next you will receive a email from Amazon requesting payment, with a link to gift card purchase area. Here they expect you to purchase a gift card, and send them the gift card code. This way it looks as if you simply bought them a gift card and there is no proof you were buying an actual item. There are other victims out there that were emailed a link to Western Union to wire money instead. Below is a screen shot from the email they sent when requesting me to purchase by gift card.
Here is an example of what you will see in the listing. In this example I searched for a computer that sells normally for $1200+ as you’ll see their price is way under retail to trick you into thinking you found a great deal. In my example you can see the same seller in the list is selling the same product in the same “new” condition at 2 different prices.
It seems as if Amazon shuts these guys down pretty quickly, but they can make a new account and pop back up just as fast especially since this is the holiday season. Always be careful and look out for these things when shopping online, if the price seems way too good to be true it usually is, and if they want you to pay by gift card or money wire then that’s a big red flag to stay away from them. Amazon.com is a great place to shop because of their A to Z guarantee and return policies, but if you don’t have actual proof that you purchased the item because it shows that you bought a gift card then there is little or nothing they can do to get your money back.
You can report these sellers here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/reports/contact-us
You can also forward any fake or scam emails here: firstname.lastname@example.org
I hope this post I wrote helps to prevent any victims.