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buyer protection escrow online classifieds Uncategorized used cars

How To Safely Buy A Used Car

Every day, hundreds of people are losing their hard-earned money trying to buy used cars. The pre-owned car market is very popular because if one looks hard enough, there are some really good deals to be found in that market. However, as with most markets, the used car market is attractive to scammers who are always on the hunt for their next victim. These scammers use Facebook and other online classifieds platforms like Gumtree and OLX to advertise nonexistent cars. Sometimes it’s not easy to differentiate between what is a scam and what is a legitimate sale.

The following are common signs of a scam:

  1. The price of the car is well below the market value. If it seems too good to be true, it usually is.
  2. Scammers will refuse to provide sufficient contact details. The phone number provided is either faulty, remains unanswered or goes directly to voice mail
  3. Scammers turn off commenting on their posts so people can’t tell other people that the sale is a scam
  4. Scammers will usually make an excuse for not being available via telephone
  5. Scammers may demand the full price of the car, or a deposit, to be transferred immediately. Once they have received money they fail to release the vehicle and become difficult to contact

Scammers often claim to live overseas or have some kind of hidden agenda

Tips to avoid scams:

Never transfer or hand over cash to a seller if you have not seen and verified the vehicle

Always meet with the seller in person, preferably in a public place

Always do a history check on the vehicle to ensure that it’s not stolen and that the car’s details match those on the ownership registration and roadworthy documents

Check that the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) matches the number on the owner registration and roadworthy documents and that the VIN number on the car has not been tampered with.

Check that the seller’s address matches the address on the registration and roadworthy documents.

Research the car’s value by searching for similar models online. If the value of the car is far below what it should be, it could be a scam

Check the service history of the car

If you suspect fraud or are a victim of a scam, contact your nearest Police station immediately.

One way to ensure that you never fall victim to scams is to use an escrow service like Paysho when buying a used vehicle. With Paysho, you are guaranteed to either get what you pay for or, at the very worst, your money back. Click here to learn more about how Paysho works and how it can protect you from getting scammed.

Categories
online scams

The Latest Gumtree Scam

The original article was published here.

The popular classifieds platform Gumtree has seen an increase in scams during lockdown, as fraudsters benefit from doing deals over a distance.

“The pandemic has seen more South Africans sell their items in an attempt to raise additional cash, and as those listings increase, so do scam attempts. With lockdown, buyers and sellers are inclined to transact online only rather than face to face or without viewing an item in person and using electronic payment methods rather than cash. This does lead to more instances of fraud,” says Estelle Nagel of Gumtree.

Many South Africans are also desperate for cash in tough times. “(This) means that we are less risk averse than normal and more likely to take a gamble in terms of safety,” she adds.

However, while there are more scam attempts, criminals are not necessarily more successful. The ratio of successful transactions versus fraudulent transactions is unchanged and less than 0.5% of transactions are reported as fraudulent, according to Gumtree.

The platform is, however, concerned about the sharp rise in “buyer scams”.

A fraudster will send through a fake proof of payment to a seller – typically a SMS that looks like an electronic transfer has been made – and then send an Uber driver to collect the item. The fraudster will then abscond with the product.  

High-value items are often targeted – particularly electronics like gaming consoles, tablets, phones and laptops.

Of late, however, more scams with motorcycles have been reported.

The best defence against a buyer scam is to never hand over an item until the money has cleared in your account. Once money has been received, transfer it to a separate account to avoid the fraudster cancelling the transfer from their side.

Nagel recommends that you continue to communicate via the Gumtree platform, and not on Whatsapp.  “Even though times are tough, don’t compromise on personal or financial safety. There are millions of legitimate buyers for your items – take time, negotiate and wait for the right one.

During the coronavirus crisis, criminals have targeted South Africans with various new scams.

These scams include sending victims cellphone messages with links purporting to be reports about the virus in their area – instead the links click through to phishing sites, which steal the victim’s credentials, says  the South African Banking Risk Information Centre,

There has also been a surge of fake – but very realistic – emails offering products such as masks, or fake offerings of vaccines, leading to phishing websites, Sabric says.

One way to protect yourself is to use the Paysho escrow service when buying from or selling to a stranger. With Paysho, your money or goods are always 100% protected from all scams. Guaranteed. You can click here to learn more about how Paysho works.

Categories
buyer protection online scams

A Sad Reality

Imagine this scenario:

After years of sitting at home looking for a job and not getting one, you finally decide that enough is enough and decide to start your own small business. You start looking on Facebook and other places for things to sell.

Eventually, you find something. A lady in Johannesburg is selling 10 pairs of shoes at R250 each. The shoes are so beautiful that you could easily sell them for double that price. The problem is that you don’t have the R2500 you need to buy the stock. But you believe so much in the product and your ability to sell it. So you decide to borrow the money from a friend or a relative.

You then contact the seller, exchange phone numbers, address details and bank account numbers. You send the money off to the seller and patiently wait for your stock to arrive. In the meantime, people are starting to place orders with you in anticipation of the the stock that is on its way.

One week passes. Then two. Then three. And the stock has not arrived. You contact the seller and get no response. You send messages. Still no response. Another few weeks go buy and as hard as it is, you are forced to accept that you have been the victim of a scam. Now, not only have you lost R2500 but you now owe that amount to the friend or relative you borrowed it from.

Stories like this one happen everyday. Every single day. The good news is that it does not have to be that way. Not with Paysho around.

Whether it is physical or digital goods, Paysho ensures that all buyers and sellers are protected equally and can transact with each other in complete peace of mind. Click here for more information on how Paysho works.

#BeSureWithPaysho

Categories
escrow photography

Wedding Day Ruined

A Facebook ad for “affordable photography” caught Natalie Barney’s eye at just the right moment of her wedding’s planning process. The images on the photographer’s portfolio looked impressive. She was quoted a great price for 100 images which she accepted, booking the date. Little did she know that she was viewing wedding images gleaned off sites like Pinterest and not the original work of the photographer.

On the day of the wedding, the photographer reported that she was having “camera issues” which, as it turned out, were the result of the photographer having zero understanding of how shutter speed and camera focus work. The end result was that the images from the event were completely unusable. They were underexposed, blurry, and awkwardly framed. The couple had to rely on friends and family who had taken their own photographs of the wedding for memories of their special day. The photographer consoled the upset bride with the promise of a free family photoshoot on a future date. When the dressed-up newlyweds arrived at the new shoot location, they were stood up by the photographer’s no-show.

Headlines like these seem to pop up with regularity: “Bride Shafted by Photographer, Never Received Images.” “Wedding Couple Devastated by Blurry Photographs.” The reason for these incidents is obvious, that there will always be amateur photographers naive enough to jump into a paid wedding with little to no skills, and there will always be brides on a budget who fall victim to their confidence.

Having a wedding on a budget is understandable. Ripping someone off with a fake portfolio and ruining a cherished memory is not. Thanks to Paysho, no one ever has to go through such an experience, especially on a day as important as their wedding day. If the Natalie and her fiance had used Paysho to facilitate the transaction, Paysho would have safeguarded their money for them and only released it after they had confirmed that they were happy with the service they received. Based on how the events of the day turned out, they would have received all their money back.

Paysho not only protects buyers of physical goods but of services as well. You can click here for more information on how Paysho works.

#BeSureWithPaysho

Categories
Uncategorized

Buyer Protection Against Dishonest Contractors

A few months ago, Carte Blanche flighted an episode on which a Johannesburg pool contractor was accused of scamming several home owners out of huge amounts of money. The story goes that the contractor would collect a 50-70% deposit, arrive on site to dig a massive hole on the ground, leave and never be seen again…


Thousands of homeowners have lost hundreds of thousands of Rands to dishonest builders, carpenters, plumbers and other contractors who have talked a good game, collected a deposit and then disappeared into thin air. In some instances, the contractor does complete the job but does so in such a shoddy manner that sometimes another contractor has to be hired to fix the mess. 


Admittedly, most contractors do a good job. And when they mess up, the vast majority put it right at once. But there is a minority out there who will do a bad job and then find ways to avoid putting it right or simply disappear without completing the job after being paid a deposit or the full amount.


Thanks to Paysho, you no longer have to worry about people running off with your hard-earned money or delivering poor workmanship. Paysho does not only provide buyer protection for physical goods but for services as well. With Paysho, your money is always 100% safe. Guaranteed


And there is usually no obvious way to tell good the good guys from the bad guys because the bad ones don’t look or sound like bad ones.


#BeSureWithPaysho

Categories
buyer protection Uncategorized

Beware of COVID-19 Scams

One silver lining that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought about is the large number of South Africans who have been able to generate an income for themselves by selling different kinds of personal protective equipment including masks, face shields, sanitizer dispensers etc…

Although no formal studies have been done with regards to the revenue that has so far been generated through the buying and selling of this equipment, the surge in the number of related social media posts, websites and classifieds adverts suggests that it is likely to run into hundreds of millions of Rands.

Many of these websites, social media posts and classifieds adverts will be from honest sellers. However, there will also be people that seek to take advantage of unwary buyers and scamming them out of their hard-earned money. Without proper precautions, the goods that a buyer receives may not match what they paid for. Or, worse yet, they may not receive the goods at all.

One way to guarantee that as a buyer you 1) receive the goods you’ve paid for and 2) that they are of the correct standard and quality is to use a reputable escrow service like Paysho to facilitate your payments.

How Paysho works:

  1. The buyer and the seller agree to the terms of the transaction.
  2. Paysho collects the funds from the buyer and the seller is notified that the funds have been secured.
  3. The seller ships the agreed goods to the buyer
  4. The buyer receives and inspects the goods
  5. If the buyer accepts the goods, Paysho releases the funds to the seller.

#BeSureWithPaysho

Categories
Uncategorized

Time Is NOT Against You

One of the tricks that scammers use to rob you of your money is to put time pressure you. For starters, they will advertise something at such a good price that it will attract a lot of potential buyers. Anyone who shows interest in the item will be told that there are many other people interested in it and that the only way to secure it is by paying a deposit or even the full amount before they’ve even seen the product or confirmed the legitimacy of the sale.

This pressure does work because everyone likes a good deal. And the scammers know that. However, if you are in a hurry to secure the item, you are more likely to make a mistake or miss a red flag – this is exactly what scammers are hoping for.

Don’t rush into a sale right away. If something feels off about a seller, you are not under any obligation to buy and you shouldn’t be pressured into buying something before all the safety boxes have been firmly ticked.

Of course, one way to protect from any scams is by using an escrow service such as Paysho whenever you want to buy or sell from Facebook, Instagram or online classifieds. Paysho gives you peace of mind with every purchase you make by ensuring that your money is protected from any scam. Whether you are buying online or offline, you can be sure with Paysho.

Categories
escrow online classifieds

Online Classifieds

According to Gumtree, the most popular searches under Used Electronics on their platform are as follows:

1. PS4

2. iPhone

3. Xbox One

4. Apple Watch

5. Playstation 4

6. iPhone X

7. iPhone 6

8. iPhone 7

9. iPhone 11

10. Drone

The searches are most likely made by a combination of buyers looking to find some good deals and sellers looking to sell their unwanted phones, game consoles etc… Classifieds platforms like Gumtree are great in that they are able to remove all geographical boundaries and limitations and make it possible for people to buy or sell from and to anyone anywhere South Africa.

Unfortunately, these searches also include those from scammers who are on the prowl, looking for their next victim. These are people who have made it their business to scam others out of their hard-earned money. And these people don’t look or sound like scammers, making it extremely difficult to know who you can trust and who you can’t.

The two ways to protect yourself from them are by: – only buying or selling from or to people that you can meet face to face or using Paysho to facilitate all your transactions when dealing with a stranger.

That way, you are always guaranteed to either receive what you pay for and if you are selling, always get paid for your goods.

Click here to learn more about how Paysho can protect and allow you to buy and sell with complete peace of mind.

#BeSureWithPaysho

Categories
escrow

What Is Escrow?

According to a study conducted by Paysho, 86% of online classified shoppers have never heard of an escrow service. Simply put, escrow is an agreement between two people or organisations in which money or property is kept by a third person or organization (middle man) until a particular condition is met. Escrows are very useful in cases where a large amount of money is involved and a certain number of obligations need to be fulfilled before a payment is released. In the case of a sale of goods or services, an escrow makes the transaction more secure for both the buyer and the seller by safeguarding all funds and only releasing them when both parties have fulfilled their part of the deal.

As a provider of escrow services, Paysho removes all uncertainty from buying and selling and ensures that anyone who uses it can buy or sell anything in complete peace of mind.

Whether you are buying or selling physical goods or service online and offline, you can be sure with Paysho.