Do Your Research Before You Do Business Online - WBAY

Target 2 Consumer Alert

Do Your Research Before You Do Business Online

Updated:

If you're selling items online, beware of people looking to rip you off.

Millie Muentes, a stay at home mom and independent sales person with a beauty company is telling her story after a potential customer tried to scam her out of hundreds of dollars.

"The person said they worked for a large company and that they were planning a wedding," said Muentes.  "They were interested in buying a large amount of products as souvenirs for their guests at this wedding."

The client emailed Millie credit card information with a name and billing address.  But Millie was suspicious, so she contacted postal inspectors who checked out the address.

"It was a freight warehouse, and that freight warehouse had a foreign address where these items were going to be mailed to," said Blanca Alvarez, U.S. Postal Inspector.

The credit card had been stolen.  It was a scam.

If Millie had fallen for this, she could have lost hundreds of dollars.

It's a reminder that it's always good to do research before you do business with a person or company you've never met before.  

Whether you're a buyer or seller, officials say be especially cautious when dealing with companies or individuals from out of the country.

Get a physical address, rather than PO box and phone number.

Call the seller to see if that phone number is correct and working.

If you'd like more tips on how to avoid internet fraud, click this link: http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud/internet_fraud/internet_fraud

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