“Most online shopping scams are essentially ordering a product and never receiving the product, so you’ve paid money and you’ve received nothing in return. Some of the most common items involved in scams include pets and pet supplies, cosmetics, clothing and health care. But Broker went beyond just selling knockoff glasses. Some customers never received their orders even though their credit cards had been charged. Those who dared to complain or ask for a refund found themselves on the receiving end of exorbitant “restocking” or “cancellation” fees. And if they objected, things got even worse. That percentage has nearly doubled in just the last five years. But even as we become more and more comfortable with the process, experts warn the internet is still fraught with risks. 

Explosive growths in online shopping fraud, hundreds of cases have been investigated CrimeTech & Media in every month. The police took action against suspect online retailers 438 times last year, compared with just 35 times in 2016. In some cases, conmen had made replicas of the websites used by reputable shops in an effort to steal cash, the paper said. In others, they bought up existing domain names which they then use to set up in business for a short period. Consumers who use the fake websites either never see the goods they have ordered or are sent counterfeit items. In some cases, the conmen use credit card information from their victims to steal more money. In total, police received over 38,300 reports of online shopping fraud last year although in 5,500 cases the complaint was withdrawn after the ordered goods arrived late. 

Once you are satisfied that the business you are dealing with is legitimate, do not let your guard down. Be sure to protect your banking and credit card information when purchasing online. Never enter credit card information on a web site that does not have the letters “https” at the start of its URL or address. 

Over the past year, many e-commerce websites have started working and are serving in a good manner. Pakistan’s e-commerce industry is gradually becoming more stable. So keeping this progress in view government should deal with online fraudulent with iron hands. 

ZAMIR AHMED MEMON,  

Shikarpur, September 21.