Tuesday, April 22, 2008

OneStopMotors.com Fraud Awareness Information Brought To You By One Stop Motors

One Stop Motors Online Fraud AwarenessOne Stop Motors cares for the safety of personal information of our online consumers, and would like to present this article below to help bring about Fraud Awareness.


For some time now there have been bogus emails concerning buying a vehicle with payment by "cashiers check". Please read the following tips on how to prevent being scammed.

* Common-Sense Advice for Sellers
* Counterfeit Cashier's Check
* Common-Sense Advice for Buyers
* How to Protect Yourself
* Examples

Common-Sense Advice for Sellers

Selling a car you find online is a lot like selling a car through a classified ad in the newspaper. In either case, use your best judgment.

Confirm contact information
Be particularly wary of buyers located overseas. Always verify the buyer's street address and phone number.

Secure payment first
Do not transfer the title until you have payment in hand at the agreed upon price.

Verify that a certified check is genuine
Before you deposit a certified check, verify authenticity with the issuing bank-not just your bank. Make sure the account contains sufficient funds and the issuing bank guarantees payment on the check. It may take a week or more for the check to clear. It hasn't cleared just because your bank has accepted it and credited your account.

Counterfeit Cashier's Check

You are selling an item over the Internet - it could be a used car, motor home, or even an airplane.

Beware of the following...

You receive an email offer to purchase your item and the buyer says he'll send a bank cashier's check. The buyer is from Nigeria or "West Africa", but has a business associate in the United States who will send you the cashier's check. Then you are told that for some reason the check was already made out to you for an amount larger than your asking price. The buyer asks you to please deposit the check, wait for it to clear, and then send him the difference -- "but only after the cashier's check clears, of course."

You are skeptical - but, sure enough, the bank cashier's check arrives by Fed Ex, it looks real, your bank accepts the check, and the bank assures you the funds are in fact available. So you wait the time the bank recommends to verify that the check is clear and then you wire the difference to your buyer in Nigeria and prepare to ship your item.

A week later your bank calls: "We're very sorry, but the cashier's check was counterfeit" -- a superb copy, but worthless. Your account is frozen. You must pay the bank back the entire amount of the cashier's check. You may even be considered a fraud suspect yourself.

Your "buyer" disappears. About the only good news: sellers rarely get to the point of shipping their items abroad.

Common-Sense Advice for Buyers

Buying a car you find online is a lot like buying a car through a classified ad in the newspaper. In either case, use your best judgment.

Know the car's market value
Be suspicious of a vehicle priced significantly below market value. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Obtain a vehicle history report
A vehicle history report (Autocheck) can provide useful information, such as who holds the title to the car and whether the car has been in an accident reported to authorities. You'll also find out whether the car was ever reported stolen, salvaged or damaged.

Inspect the car
Schedule an inspection with a professional mechanic or an inspection service if the car is not in your area. An early inspection can help you identify problems. However, keep in mind that an inspection isn't a warranty and won't guarantee a car is free from defects or that inspectors have identified all existing problems.

Confirm contact information
Before you send payment, verify the seller's street address and phone number-an email address is not enough. ZIP codes, area codes and addresses should match up. Be wary if the seller is located overseas.

Get a detailed receipt
Ask the seller for a receipt that states whether the vehicle is being sold with a warranty or "as is."

Get title to the vehicle
Make sure you know what's required in your state to transfer title to the vehicle you're buying.

How to Protect Yourself

If you are selling online, be extremely skeptical of any offers

* from overseas to a party you do not know
* paid by cashier's check
* from buyers sending more than the purchase price of the item
* from buyers who seem more worried about payment than the shipment of the item to them
* from buyers who show little or no concern to the condition of the item they are purchasing

Also, a bank may make money "available" to you almost at once if you deposit a purported bank cashier's check, but that's NOT a guarantee the check is authentic. It could be returned as counterfeit up to three years later, and the bank will hold you responsible for the money.

Ways to verify a check include:

* Inspect the check carefully to ensure it contains all the legal elements of a check.
* Amount of the check, in figures and words, should match. Often this amount is machine "impressed" on official bank checks.
* Account number should be encoded in MICR ink (should not be shiny in appearance).
* Ensure the drawer's signature appears on the check; watch for tracing lines, "shaky" writing. Often facsimile signatures are used on official bank checks, with a second, original signature required for amounts exceeding a designated dollar amount.
* Perforations - checks are generally perforated on at least one side.
* Routing and transit numbers appearing in the MICR line and elsewhere on the check should be consistent.
* Contact the financial institution on which the check is drawn for authentication that the check is valid with no outstanding claims for loss, stolen or destroyed instrument. Verify if the person whose signature appears on the check on behalf of the bank is authorized to sign official checks of the bank.
* IMPORTANT:Independently verify the item to verify its authenticity. Do not rely on information printed on the face of the check, such as phone numbers or name/location of bank, because in a convincing scam, these numbers will often connect directly to the scam artists or their associates.
* Find the bank's telephone number from a reliable source, such as a bank directory, the bank's web site or directory assistance.
* Verify as much information as possible - check number (is it in normal sequence of other official checks issued by the bank), payee, issue date, amount and authorized signatory. Ask if the bank's official checks bear any security features, such as watermarks, security threads, background patterns, high-resolution borders, void pantograph, etc.
* If there is any doubt as to the collectibility of the check, do not accept the check for deposit or encashment. Send the check to the issuing financial institution for collection. Ask that proceeds be wired directly to the customer's account.
* As an alternative to sending the item for collection, deposit the check to the customer's account, and place a Reg. CC exception hold. Under Reg. CC, the entire amount of non-local checks can be held for up to 11 business days before making the money available for customer's use, if the bank can evidence "reasonable cause to doubt collectibility." In the case of a cashier's check or other official check of a bank, if the check contains any questionable feature, erasures, alterations, etc., the depositary bank has a "reasonable cause to doubt collectibility."

Beware of overpayment or other complicated payment schemes

Don't agree to any plan where the buyer asks to send a check for more than the sale price and requests that the seller refund the difference. And be suspicious of any buyer who proposes making payment through a friend or agent of the buyer.


Example 1

I saw your advert on online and am ready to pay you $1000. Just for you to hold it. I am based in uk. My mode of payment will be through money order, I will instruct my client in the USA to make out a money order of $5000 to you. reason being that it is a refund payment, and the customer issuing the check has the policy not to issue more than one check to a refund payment, which means that the check is going to carry the whole amount of what i am buying and also the shipping. The excess will be for the shipping of the item and my other goods in the USA. I want you to send the balance which is meant for the shipping to my shipper who I will instruct to contact you after i have received an email from you telling me you want to sell to me. If my offer is okay kindly reply by giving me your full name and address to which payment will be made too and also photos so I can see what I really want to get.


Example 2

I'm Fred Martins from UK. Having seen your advert, I hereby crave your indulgence to my interest of buying it and the payment will be made through via check, after which, my shipper will come or the pick-up. I shall interested to know the suitable price of this items bisides, I will send 3000 dollar on check to you and after the clearance you will wire the balance through western union transfer to my shipper.

Fred Martin


One Stop Motors Used Cars For Sale is your ONE STOP for Buying, Selling, and Financing all motorized vehicles. OneStopMotors.com offers options for financing, extended warranties, world wide shipping and One Stop Motors customer satisfaction commitment.

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