Facebook Marketplace reached one billion global users in the previous year. By enabling Facebook users to transact with one another invisibly, it has grown to be a titan in the consumer-to-consumer sector. Since the majority of individuals already have a Facebook account, it is also free and easy to use. Users can look for postings in their neighborhood, which makes pick-up considerably simpler. Additionally, users are more confident in the site's safety and security because they can examine the profiles of merchants. Unfortunately, this sense of security is frequently unfounded.
One recent survey found that 1 in 6 respondents (17%) had experienced online fraud. Of course, a lot of the business on Facebook's "classified ads section" is legitimate, but like any other online market, it also draws a lot of con artists.
Therefore, it should come as no surprise that the social network is struggling to stop fraudsters, occasionally overreacting by blocking legitimate users while unintentionally allowing scams to get past a combination of automated checks and human reviewers. The stakes are very high with phony listings including apartment sales and car purchases.
Users are under even more pressure as a result to comprehend the typical tactics employed by online con artists as well as what they can do to stay safe. The top eight frauds to avoid on Facebook Marketplace are listed below, along with tips on how to identify warning signs:
Products with flaws
Sellers may promote a product that appears to be in good condition in the image they posted. However, after delivery or when you bring it home, it is found to be broken. Electronic purchases provide additional challenges because you frequently can't check out every feature before making a purchase. This could occur because of a dishonest salesperson or a skilled con artist.
Scammers promote products that are frequently of great quality and have highly alluring price tags. When you want to get the "bargain," it's "gone," and you'll be presented with a comparable item at a much higher price or a worse substitute.
If it isn't broken, it might be a phony item. Targets for counterfeiting are frequently designer clothing, perfume, jewelry, and cosmetics. It can be difficult to tell whether they are real or not from a little photo, much like frauds with damaged goods. Offers that appear too good to be true generally are.
On Facebook Marketplace, scammers may also con sellers. One typical instance is when they share a screenshot purportedly documenting the transaction and claim to have overpaid for anything you're selling. They'll request a return of the difference. However, as there was no initial payment, you now owe the refund sum.
Non-delivery (advance charge) (advance fee)
Selling something, getting the money, and then never giving it to the customer is a common swindle. Obviously, only things sent from beyond the buyer's local area are covered by this.
Spamming Facebook Marketplace with giveaway offers is one approach to obtain that extra information. The victim believes that by simply clicking on a link and entering some personal information, they will automatically be entered to win free luxury goods, cryptocurrency, or other exclusive offers. Of course, the con artists only need their personal data to carry out subsequent identity fraud or theft.
Only purchase products from nearby vendors and inspect them before buying.
- Keep an eye out for recently created accounts and look at user reviews on buyer/seller profiles.
- Never provide personal information to access giveaway offers.
- Use only secure payment options (Digital Escrow) over Facebook Messenger as they provide a mechanism for payment disputes. Wire transfers, payments, and gift cards.
- Keep the chat on the payments app or Facebook. Communication to another site where they may defraud people more easily and perhaps stop them from challenging transactions.
- Never send anything out before money has been received.
Keep an eye out for price changes in the listing.
How to identify if a buyer or seller is fake?
How to avoid getting scammed?
1. Verify details of buyer/seller before proceeding to payment.
2. Any individual showing urgency or not waiting for a reasonable amount of time is likely to be a scammer.
3. You should never scan a QR code, share an OTP, or visit a link given by anyone on the internet.
4. Your One Time Password (OTP), UPI pin, and other secret information should not be shared on WhatsApp. Never provide banking information if anyone asks you to and always contact your bank. There is a possibility of fraud here.
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.
Digital Escrow Service 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.
Check back here to learn more about Escrow and how to protect yourself from fraud.
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!
As you're now aware of the importance of online safety, let's get your transactions secure on Vouch. It's just a click away.