One dangerous thing with anything that goes trending in e-commerce is that it quickly becomes the scammers’ favorite target. While buying your cigarettes online may sound like a grand deal, always beware of trickster sellers who will not only rip you off but also land you in problems with the authorities.
So before rushing a seemingly good deal to completion, it’s wise to find out if your dealer is legit and legal. But for those who have never been victims, here’s what goes down.
How Scammers trick you
Scam “International companies” announce that they are selling low-priced cigarettes online. They design fake websites that look legitimate and include photos of renowned brand names with tobacco costing lesser than half the prices in the US or Canada.
And because they know they are presenting a “great deal” they place a cap on the number of boxes you can buy, say not less that 5 or 10 cartons. You may not have noticed any red flags up to now, but things get fishy when it’s time check-out. That’s when you notice the merchant doesn’t take credit cards and you’ll need to use a prepaid debit card or pay via wire.
Please don’t do it! The scammer will accept your cash, confirm your order but you’ll never receive your cigarettes.
How to spot internet sales scam:
It doesn’t take an FBI agent to spot a fake merchant; anyone can— as long as you know the tell-tale signs of potential fraud.
Here are some of the warnings that your cigarette seller is deceitful;
Just like we’ve been warned before; if their price is too low, think twice. Compare the offer with what other sites that sell the same product have to judge.
If the site asks you to wire money, then it isn’t legit. Pay only by credit card, don’t wire or use your prepaid debit card
You may also want to confirm if the seller has some valid contact info and of course, their social media presence. Check for a valid address and phone number in the website’s “contact us” details.
You can also use Whois.com to check the domain name to confirm if the business is registered in within the country, in the region, it claims to be.
Is the website secure and authenticated? Always confirm for “https” and online seals that will make sure your credit card details are protected.
As Cybercrime escalates, web users should also be cautious about their browsing and buying habits. You need to be sure you are purchasing from a legal Online cigars and pipe tobacco Merchant account holder.