What is it?

You pay in advance for goods or services for your business that are never received, with criminals creating fake websites and documents that appear genuine in order to trick you.

How to spot a purchase scam

  1. You receive an invoice for goods or services that have not been ordered
  2. You are sold goods at higher than average prices
  3. You are asked to pay by bank transfer instead of using the online platform’s secure payment options

Example of a purchase scam

Kyle was looking to buy stationery for his business when he spotted a deal online that was a lot cheaper than any of his suppliers. The website looked to be professional and closely resembled that of a genuine business, convincing him to make payment via bank transfer, the only option available on the website. Kyle proceeded to do so, believing he was getting the deal of a lifetime and shortly received his invoice.

A week later, the stationary order still hadn’t been arrived. Kyle searched for the business’s contact details when he came across several bad reviews from customers, also awaiting their purchases. At that moment he realised he had fallen for a scam and lost his business a lot of money.

If you believe your business has fallen for a scam, contact the bank immediately on a number you know to be correct, such as the one listed on the back of your business’s bank card.

 

Always remember

Be wary of anyone who calls on behalf of a supplier. Contact them direct using a known and trusted phone number or email


Be suspicious of any “too good to be true” offers or prices


Use the secure payment methods recommended by reputable online retailers and auction sites


Do your research before making any purchases by reading online reviews


Purchase items made by a major brand from the list of authorised sellers listed on their official website and ensure you receive proof of purchase


Double-check orders before making payment and return any items not ordered


Always access the website you’re purchasing from by typing it into your web browser and be wary of clicking on links in unsolicited emails


Always ensure you click ‘log out’ or ‘sign out’ of websites