With online shopping becoming increasingly popular, online shopping fraud is on the rise. Many people have lost their hard-earned money because of tricks played by fraudsters. Increasingly clever fraudsters are coming up with more sophisticated methods of cheating people. If you read the news regularly, you might have seen several cases where people have been cheated by online scams.

The sad part is that not just innocent and uninformed people are falling victim to online fraud. Many educated people are also struggling with the effects of this fraud. Recently, a doctor lost Rs 2.62 Lakh following a purchase on an online shopping website.

A doctor lost Rs 2.62 Lakh after he bought a bag

A doctor in Jodhpur received a call from a lady who claimed to be calling from a Classic Enterprise in Delhi. The lady told the doctor that if he bought from the company's website, he would get an assured gift. Furthermore, the lady told the doctor that by purchasing items from their website, he would be eligible to win gifts like a laptop, iPhone, and LED TV as part of the 'deal of the day' scheme.

The doctor, believing this to be true, ordered a laundry bag worth Rs 399 from the said portal by paying with his credit card. He received a call from the same portal four days after purchasing the bag saying that he won a laptop worth Rs 72,000 as an assured gift. The doctor was required to pay Rs 5,580 for GST in order to receive the laptop. The doctor trusted the portal and paid Rs 5,580 with his credit card.

Even though the doctor paid Rs 5,580 for the product, it was not delivered. To get the laptop delivered to his home, he had to pay additional fees under different terms and conditions. The victim paid about Rs 2.62 lakhs in total. The fraudsters did not respond to him after he paid them, and he has not been contacted by them since.

Also Check: Man lost 1.81Lakh while buying medicines online

How to Avoid such Frauds?

1. Be sure you have thoroughly researched the portal before purchasing from an online shopping website. A genuine company will have all the details of the company on its website, such as an address, email, and phone number.

2. Look at the online reviews of the shopping portal to see what customers have to say. Don't buy from the portal if it has a lot of negative reviews.

3. Never accept offers that seem too good to be true. You should make sure to do your research before buying from a company that offers good discounts.

4. You shouldn't pay the company any money for any gift it offers.

5. It is recommended that digital escrow platforms be used for payment. When making an online payment with Escrow, you do not share your financial information with anyone. There is a platform for escrow called Vouch.

How does digital escrow work?

In digital escrow, a third-party account holds the money deposited by the buyer until the seller fulfills the terms of the contract. The escrow company supervises the transacting parties.

What is the role of Digital Escrow in preventing online fraud in India? 

Digital escrow services are offered by many companies in India. Among the most trusted is Vouch.

Vouch’s Digital Escrow service is a transparent way for buyers and sellers to build trust and secure a clean transfer of product and payment. Sellers can feel assured that they will be fairly compensated promptly, and buyers will feel confident that their order will be delivered as expected and on schedule. Vouch Digital Escrow keeps you updated and informed at every step of the transaction process till the end. Vouch’s professionals are always available to assist you with all queries that you may have during the entire transaction process. 

There is no scope for deceit or fraud since the payments, shipping, delivery, and execution are carried out under the honest and watchful eyes of the Vouch’s professionals. With Vouch, any business transaction becomes transparent, uncomplicated, and hassle-free. If you ever come across a fraudster asking for OTP, asking you to scan a QR code, or asking you to click on phishing links, you can simply refuse and ask him/her to proceed with the transaction through Vouch.

This is Fraud Story #172. Check back here for more fraud stories and scams that you can protect yourself from.

Safety is not just about protecting your credit, debit card number, and UPI accounts. It's about having control of your money till you've received the product or service you bought online!

Note: This is a good-faith initiative to educate the world about avoiding frauds like these and how to act when you're becoming a victim of such a situation. 

Do you have a fraud you would like to report? Please write to us at letstalk@iamvouched.com