A middle-aged man in Madison, Illinois, has recently been convicted for defrauding car sellers in two states by giving them counterfeit checks as payment for their cars. The man comes across as an accomplished con artist; he operated with a false ID, which he used not just to cheat these individuals but also to take out vehicle loans later on.
While this man and his cronies have been brought to justice and the victims compensated for their losses, it does make one wonder – what precautions can one take to protect themselves from vehicle fraud, which is a distressingly common occurrence? Following are some safety measures that people would do well to observe when transacting with strangers on the Internet.
Precautions when buying a vehicle online
While it’s true that one can get better varieties and bargains on the Internet than in real life, it’s also true that one seldom knows what to make of people they meet online. The Internet is popular not just with users like you and I, but also with scamsters of all sorts.
While websites take care to remove fraudulent listings and posters to give the genuine users a more enjoyable and trustworthy shopping environment, one cannot be too careful when it comes to conducting high-level commercial transactions with complete strangers.
Following is a list of things to keep in mind when purchasing a used car/vehicle online:
More things that should make you wary about the vehicle and the seller:
Precautions when selling a vehicle online:
So you have zeroed down on where you want to list your vehicle for sale. Now begins the tough part of sifting through the interests you receive from prospective buyers. In addition to the points made in the previous section, a seller should be mindful of the following:
Above all, trust your instincts and err on the side of caution. If you do get scammed despite all the measures, file a complaint immediately. If your purchase goes through successfully, you might want to shop around for auto insurance quotes to get the best deal on your new vehicle. Good luck with online transactions, and stay safe!