Buyers warned of surge in used-car scams
Scammers are targeting the online second-hand car market. Here’s how to avoid them.
Used-car buyers have been warned to beware of deals that seem too good to be true following a surge in scams in the online second-hand vehicle market.
Rising demand for used cars, fuelled by commuters seeking alternatives to public transport due to COVID, has pushed prices to record levels and attracted an influx of scammers seeking to take advantage of a shortage of popular vehicles.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission says used-vehicle buyers have lost almost $300,000 to scammers in the first three months of this year – more than for the whole of 2019. The consumer watchdog’s chief, Delia Rickard, predicts losses this year will surpass the $1 million lost in 2020, when demand for second-hand cars soared during the pandemic.
Used-vehicle buyers have lost almost $300,000 to scammers in the first three months of 2021.
Beware of sellers asking for payment before the exhange has taken place.