I do most of my shopping online. I don’t have my own transport (other than ‘Boris’ my mobility scooter, and he doesn’t go far). Recently, I ordered a product through a Facebook advertisement from what I thought was a company established 27 years ago in Australia, who I knew to be reputable. I ordered and paid for my goods via PayPal, on March 3.
After a couple of weeks, I contacted PayPal to advise that I’d not received the product. PayPal instructed me to communicate with the ‘seller’. I did this, receiving a variety of reasons for why I hadn’t received the product ordered. I started to lose patience.
On April 9, I contacted the company I had ordered the product through. It was revealed that they had no record of my order (or me) in their system. I became alarmed.
After numerous emails and phone calls, it appeared I had been tricked by scammers. Increasingly, there are scammers who will mimic a company’s website (through Facebook) to scam payment for a product they have no intention of sending (one might question if they even have it in the first place).
I’m aware of companies that act as ‘go-betweens’, marketing a product that comes from the United States, China, Korea, India etc. The majority of my purchases through these companies have been without problem. (My advice here to to ensure you do the currency conversion to be sure you’re getting the best deal in your local currency, which in my case is Australian dollars.)
What angered me most was that there are many, just like me, who rely on online purchasing. I suspect there are also those people who don’t realise they have been taken for a ride until they haven’t received the goods, but have had money withdrawn from their funds to pay for the item. Usually, by this time, getting any recompense is too late.
Without online shopping, I probably wouldn’t have enough food in my fridge, freezer or pantry. I use online shopping to purchase clothes too. Without online shopping, I would be in quite a pickle, so there are a few tips I’ve employed to ensure I don’t get caught out again.
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