Other Scams, Hoaxes and Frauds

How to check if an Online Store is a Corona Scam

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Scammers are using the Corona Virus to scam you

Due to the Corona crises, many consumers are looking for products like:

  • Face masks
  • Antibacterial soap
  • Corona test kits
  • And maybe even a COVID-19 cure

At the moment few if any online stores and retailers can offer these. In most countries, governments are distributing face masks and test kits centrally towards those who need them the most (hospitals and medical professionals). 

We receive numerous complaints about Corona scam shops at the moment who:

  • Never deliver the product
  • Deliver a fake and in some cases even dangerous product
  • Use your payment details to take more money from you

How to identify an Online Store Corona Scam?

Consider the following tips when you are looking for products to protect yourself and your family from the COVID virus:

  • Be extremely suspicious: As stated, it is very unlikely retailers have face masks and test kits in stock. Most of these products are distributed by the authorities at this time (as they should be).
  • Only buy from reputable stores and websites: Do not trust websites that have been up for a few days or weeks. You can use Scamadviser to check this.
  • Do not trust consumer reviews: Reviews on the website itself are often fake. Also, reviews on platforms like Trustpilot and Resellerrating are increasingly fake. Check the reviews of individual persons. Did they leave multiple reviews for multiple websites over a long period of time? These reviews can be trusted more. 
  • Contact the company: Call the company. Ask how they got supplies, from whom. How fast they expect to deliver. Check if they are registered as a company. If you cannot find a valid email address (do not trust Gmail and other free email addresses), phone number and physical address, it is likely to be a scam. 
  • Do not trust product claims: There is no cure for Corona yet. Product statements claiming they can protect you against the virus are false. The only solution is to make sure you stay in good health upon that when you get the virus, your body as the strength to resist it.  
  • Only pay with reliable payment methods: if you can use payment methods that allow you to get your money back in case the product is not delivered or fake like Paypal, credit card or an "after delivery payment method" such as Klarna or Afterpay. If in the order process the web site states that these payment methods are not available due to technical issues and you can pay in cryptocurrency or via wire transfer, you can be sure it is a scam. 

for more tips, read "How to Recognize a Scam?". 

 

 

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