Five fashionable Facebook Marketplace scams to keep away from | UK | News | EUROtoday

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In this photo illustration, the Facebook app logo is...

A warning has been issued to Facebook Marketplace customers (Image: Getty)

Second-hand promoting platform Facebook Marketplace attracts over a billion buyers each month, providing a variety of merchandise from televisions to automobiles.

However, alongside real cut price hunters, there are additionally fraudsters trying to deceive folks, studies Wales Online.

A spokesperson for the social media large advises: “Double-check deals that seem too good to be true. Scammers may try to use under-priced items to lure buyers into a scam.

“Do not ship deposits for high-value gadgets (residences, automobiles and many others.) with out confirming that they are actual first. When attainable, attempt to verify the existence and possession (e.g. a pink slip for a automotive) of the merchandise(s) in individual or over a video chat earlier than sending funds.

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Facebook Marketplace is used billions of occasions. (Image: Getty)

“Always verify the tracking numbers that you see on Marketplace on the delivery company’s website, and make sure that the delivery address and delivery information is correct.

They further added: “Eligible purchases made with checkout on Facebook are lined by Purchase Protection. Items exchanged in individual utilizing money or different person-to-person fee strategies usually are not eligible.”

“When shopping for in individual, earlier than finishing the transaction, examine the gadgets carefully to ensure that they: are actual (e.g. verifying authenticity), are within the anticipated situation (e.g. new, used and many others.) and work as anticipated.”

Misinformation expert, Dan Ariely, has shared some of the most common scams to be wary of on Facebook Marketplace:

In this photo illustration, the Facebook logo is seen...

Facebook Marketplace users have been issued with a warning. (Image: Getty)

1. Fake profile

Always scrutinise the seller’s profile – including their join date on Facebook and the number of listings they have. Scammers often have a recent join date and more than 20 items listed.

Check the ratings and reviews they’ve received from other buyers on their profile. You can also delve into their other listings and review their activity on the Marketplace.

2. Payment and overpayment scams

In this prevalent scam, fraudsters posing as buyers may claim they’ve paid for an item when they haven’t. They might send a counterfeit cheque, use an unreliable payment method, or even allege they’ve overpaid and request a refund.

They could also attempt to use payment methods that can be easily cancelled after you’ve dispatched the item, leaving you at a loss. To protect yourself, Dan advises:

  • Always check you’ve actually got the money before offering any refunds
  • Make sure the funds have cleared completely in your account before posting anything
  • Use payment methods that can’t be reversed after the sale

Facebook Turns 20 Years

Marketplace users have been told to beware for fakes. (Image: Getty)

3. Fake returns

In this scam, the buyer asserts that they are dissatisfied with or don’t want the item after purchasing it. They’ll then request to return it for a full refund.

The scammer may either retain the original item and never return it, send back a damaged or different item, or even provide false tracking information to assert they’ve returned it. Either way, if you refund before receiving the item back in its original condition, you stand to lose out.

To steer clear of such scams, Dan advises to always hold off on issuing a refund until you’ve received the item back and verified its condition.

4. Real estate scams

Beware of too-good-to-be-true rental listings featuring stunning photos of properties. After signing what appears to be a legitimate lease or sending money to “safe the deposit,” you might discover the property is already occupied.

Scammers often post pictures of homes they don’t own and offer them for rent without viewings. Dan’s tip: never send deposits for pricey items like flat rentals without confirming their authenticity.

Where possible, inspect the property in person before parting with any money.

In this photo illustration, the Facebook and Meta logo is...

Meta owns Facebook and the Marektplace (Image: Getty)

5. The seller asks to be paid in gift cards

The rise of online scamming has seen an increase in gift card fraud. Scammers may request payment via gift cards instead of through Facebook Marketplace or a payment app.

For example, if a scammer is “promoting” an item for £100, they might instruct the buyer to load a Visa gift card with the amount. They’ll then demand the gift card number and PIN before dispatching the item.

Often, the item isn’t as described, or it doesn’t arrive at all because it was never real to begin with.

Dan cautions against using gift cards for payments since they’re untraceable and non-refundable, making them a preferred method for scammers.

6. Broken or dodgy tech items

So, you’ve snagged what seems like the deal of the century on a high-end smart TV, smartphone, or gaming console for a mere £200 but it turns out to be a dud. The ad boasted minimal use, yet when you met the seller at a public spot and exchanged cash, there wasn’t an opportunity to power it up and ensure its functionality.

Once you’re back home and discover the item is non-functional, tracking down the elusive seller on Facebook may prove impossible. Expert Dan advises always testing electronic goods before parting with any money.

7. Bait-and-switch scams

In this scenario, a seller tempts you with an incredible offer on a top-notch product at a price that’s unbelievably low. It sounds too good to be true because it likely is.

The seller never plans to part with the advertised item. Once they’ve piqued your interest, they’ll inform you it’s no longer available, but they have a “comparable” item that might interest you usually at a steeper price or significantly inferior quality.

8. Immediate interest

Beware of “patrons” who shortly ask on your contact particulars to arrange a gathering. This is a traditional ruse to acquire your cellphone quantity.

Their actual purpose is to make use of your quantity to arrange a Google Voice account, sending a verification code to your cell below the guise of confirming your id.

The reality is, this code provides them entry to the Google Voice account they’ve simply created in your identify, enabling them to commit additional scams or probably hijack your id. Dan’s steering is evident: maintain all communications throughout the confines of Facebook Marketplace.

Dan has shared some fast recommendations on learn how to keep protected on Facebook Marketplace:

  • Verify the vendor’s profile: Before making any transactions, take a detailed have a look at the vendor’s profile, whether or not they have a good profile with footage, a historical past of exercise, and connections.
  • Only talk by way of Facebook Messenger: Stay on Facebook Messenger for all of your chats. Avoid sellers who attempt to swap to WhatsApp or e mail.
  • Inspect the merchandise earlier than buying: Before you hand over the money, take an excellent have a look at the merchandise. Make certain it matches the vendor’s description precisely. If you are shopping for one thing dear, think about assembly someplace you’ll be able to try it out correctly before you purchase.
  • Avoid superior fee requests: Never pay for one thing earlier than it’s in your palms. Be cautious of sellers asking for deposits, particularly in the event that they’re overseas or can’t meet in individual.
  • Check for opinions and scores: Some Facebook Marketplace sellers have opinions. While not assured, good ones from different patrons is usually a bit reassuring. But be cautious if there aren’t any opinions, or if those there appear a bit fishy.
  • Meet in public locations: Meet in a pubic that’s well-lit, like a restaurant or park. Avoid dodgy again alleys and don’t invite at your private home or theirs. Bringing a pal alongside for firm is a great transfer too.
  • Trust your instincts: If one thing feels fallacious, belief your instincts and stroll away. It’s higher to overlook out on a cut price than get stung. Your security is extra vital than any deal.