how do you spot a pet scammer

It may seem like a simple step, but paying attention to the way the company communicates with its clients says a lot about them and whether they can be trusted. Hi Shazzadi, yes from what you have said its a scam, Zelle+”god fearing woman” are typical things I see in petscams. Other transporters will only speak to their clients via online chat in an effort to conceal their identity. Be sure to find a different company before you end up losing precious time and money. International pet transport company based in Orlando, Florida. Dating and relationship coach Maya Diamond says: "If you haven't met someone in person and they're saying, 'I love you,' there's a good chance they're a scammer, especially if they haven't made an effort to meet you. Pet transport scams are an unfortunate reality for many pet owners. The Conversation UK receives funding from these organisations. However, the number of victims and the estimated cost of this scam for consumers is estimated to be increasing. Pet scams are not a new problem. Do search for the seller’s email and web address to see if the person has been the subject of complaints, and check the seller’s name against watchdog lists of suspected scammers (see “More Resources”). In the first stage of the scam, offenders will typically seek to build trust with the unsuspecting buyer by using scripted messages which promise pet wellbeing items and after-sale documentation. Ask for a phone number for the person selling the cat and a veterinary clinic the cat has been to. DOT Ruling on Service Animals: What You Need to Know, The Top Dangers of Putting Pets in Airplane Cargo. There are plenty of ways to avoid being puppy scammed online. Once the victim trades their pets, the scammer … If you notice that your chosen pet transporter only accepts payments through Western Union, Money Gram or another unrecognizable payment method, avoid putting your pet in their care. Scammers can target anyone. The very easy way to prove it is ask for a videochat with them where they can show you the puppy. Often, scammers will “give away” a pet for a delivery fee, or offer a discounted price. Because this fraudulent behavior isn’t immediately obvious, it’s your responsibility to put your detective skills to work and search for any red flags. Couple that with advance-fee payments. If they seem to have little care about this in their advertisements or when you are conversing, they may be a pet scammer. How To Spot a Fraudulent Pet Transport Company? Not all pet transport companies are created equal, though. Scammers will typically operate a second website, a pet shipping company. Portsmouth, Hampshire, Online talk: Prof Sir Andy Haines and Prof Chris Dye in Conversation: "Building back healthier: climate change, health and the recovery from Covid-19" Shelters and rescue groups will be able to tell you about the basic health and some history of the pet you want to adopt. How do you Spot a Pet Scammer? Whatever the case, you’re hooked and ready to pay. Always ask to talk on the phone or video chat. Discounted or Negotiable Prices. However, learning to recognize the red flags can help protect you and your family from fraud. How to spot a scam: Criminal scammers will often use the names of legitimate pet shippers such as Jetpets, use pirate websites and the logos... Scammers will generally offer to provide free or inexpensive puppies, charging just for the price of shipping. If their response is poorly written or teeming with spelling or grammatical errors, there’s a good chance it didn’t come from a reputable pet transport company representative. Avoid giving away your money to these scammers by searching for pet transporters on more reputable sites. The main goal of a pet transport company is to keep your animal protected from harm throughout their entire journey. It has come to our attention that there are a growing number of scammers using Zelle to receive payment for non-delivery fraud, specifically pet scams. Many potential pet owners are scammed through craigslist pets, email scams, buying dogs online, scam websites, and pet travel scammers. Luckily, the anatomy of how offenders organise pet scams is fairly simple and there are some early warning signs to spot them. While some reputable breeders do in fact sell dogs they feel are … This video couldn't have gone any better... ━━━━━━━━━━━━━ SOCIAL MEDIA! If a seller encourages you to send a down payment or any form of money before receiving your item, this is a strong indication that they are trying to scam buyers. Online, Oxfordshire, Angela Saini - Race, Gender and Power 4530 S. Orange Blossom Trail #540, Orlando, FL 32839, Copyright © 2021 Blue Collar Pet Transport. If the price of pet transport seems too good to be true, it probably is. We are taking appropriate measures to maintain the health and safety of our drivers, pets, and clients. Using this, they will attempt to get more money from the buyer by asking for more fees. Analyze reviews and referrals. First, though, be sure to watch out for these warning signs of fraudulent pet transport. Another good resource available to prospective buyers is my site, petscams.com, which is the largest publicly accessible website dedicated to documenting fraudulent pet and shipping websites. Many fraudulent pet transport companies are based outside of the United States, and they don’t want customers to find out. Maybe they claim the pet is great with kids, incredibly loving, or lonely in his old age. When planning to transport your pet, you want to ensure that they’re as safe and comfortable as possible. Those following best practices will also only adopt out pets who are up-to-date on vaccinations, have been seen by a vet and are spayed or neutered before going to an adoptive home. Fraudulent pet transport companies, on the other hand, typically stray from the norm in this respect. BBB urges the public to be on guard against online puppy scams; inspect an animal in person before paying money, and pay by credit card if you do make an online purchase. In addition to stealing the names of trusted pet transporters, these scammers also tend to copy their logos and website. As a result, they go out of their way to hide their foreign area code and insist on communicating exclusively via email. If the pet transporter you choose turns down any request you make to speak over the phone, be wary of its legitimacy. — Because of this, it might be tempting to go on the internet and look for a new animal companion. The scammer will say "Say [word] if you want me to make your pet neon" and when someone takes the bait and says the word, the scammer will tell them to trade their pet(s) that they would like to have neon versions of. Luckily, the anatomy of how offenders organise pet scams is fairly simple and there are some early warning signs to spot them. Pictures and videos stolen from legitimate breeders will often be sent to victims as part of this process to convince the buyer that the animal exists. Listen people. Before you reach the payment stage, it’s well worth your time to avoid searching for pet transport companies on websites that are notorious for scams. For one thing, the “out of town” excuse serves to explain why you can't see the animal in person. If … Scammers are also using fake IPATA email addresses in their pet delivery emails to convince you that the shipment is legitimate. The website was also made last month too which is very typical of pet scams. These specialists monitor weather, road conditions and other relevant factors to provide your pet with a safe and hassle-free experience. Breeder’s priorities should be for the care and welfare of their animals before anything else. Scammers will often originate in Europe or Africa. How to avoid a pet adoption scam & warning signs: Emails contain broken English as the scammers are generally in another country. We are often asked if it is safe to pay with Zelle and while it may be secure, it is dangerous to use Zelle to make payments to people you do not know. When you read the listing from a pet transport company, be sure to confirm that they only charge for the cost of transport. The best thing you can do for your four-legged friend is to take your time doing extensive research on your chosen pet transport company before you make that call. For another, it creates the opportunity to ask for money to ship the pet to you. Some Craigslist scammers may ask you to send money to a foreign address because they “have suddenly been stationed overseas,” or something similar. The purpose at this stage is to rush the victim into paying a deposit, which will usually be requested in the form of a non-refundable payment. — Whether it is a puppy, kitten or even an exotic bird, animal companions can relieve the stress of spending prolonged periods indoors. Watch for poor grammar and spelling mistakes. You don’t have to spend thousands to get a great new dog. If their response is poorly written or teeming with spelling or grammatical errors, there’s a good chance it didn’t come from a reputable pet transport company representative. Most pet transporters rely on trusted payment methods like PayPal or a reputable credit card company to complete transactions. The best sources for purebred puppies will have ample positive reviews or referrals from... Meet your breeder or puppy seller. Ask for a phone number for the person selling the pet and a veterinary clinic the pet has been to. Once the unsuspecting buyer is hooked, the offender will move onto their second stage of the scam, the sting. The online dog-for-sale ad looked trustworthy enough. Pet scams are usually organised into two stages: a hook and a sting. One promising avenue in the case of pet scams is to explore the willingness of domain name registrars to take down these websites in light of the growing threat that they present to consumers. More people are falling victims to pet scams today than ever before. • Don’t buy a pet without seeing it in person. With pictures of adorable animals and declarations of compassion on every page, it’s not always easy to spot the signs of a scam waiting to happen. Here is a list of known pet scammer emails and websites that have been reported to IPATA over the last year. Puppy adoption scams and dog flipping is a thing, and it's growing. University of Surrey provides funding as a founding partner of The Conversation UK. Every day I check with the Better Business Bureau to see what scams are making the rounds and every day most of the scams involve people who were tricked when buying a pet online. In most cases, however, this means you’re dealing with a pet transport scammer. Great breeders and good samaritans do exist, but please make sure you are dealing with a reputable person before financially and emotionally investing in a companion. A reputable pet transport company be happy to answer all of your questions and address any of your concerns over the phone. A simple way to spot a pet transport scammer is to send them an email. Myles Allen, Kaya Axelsson, Sam Fankhauser & Steve Smith in conversation, Aston Talks: Assistive technologies for people with impaired mobility - online public lecture by Professor William Holderbaum, The Large Hadron Collider and the Hidden Universe, Online talk: Prof Sir Andy Haines and Prof Chris Dye in Conversation: "Building back healthier: climate change, health and the recovery from Covid-19", Puppy-farmed dogs show worse behaviour, suffer ill health and die young – so adopt, don't shop. Buying or adopting any pet online, without actually seeing it first is extremely risky, and I strongly recommend you do not do it! These scams often leave expectant pet owners empty-handed, and with an empty wallet. One victim’s comment that I found described paying US$10,000 (£7,306) after being informed that there had been a plane crash and the transaction had incurred significant legal costs. The offenders may also create their own fictitious scenarios and stories. Myles Allen, Kaya Axelsson, Sam Fankhauser & Steve Smith in conversation The most common fee usually requested during this stage of the scam is for some sort of refundable cargo crate, often one which they claim is “temperature controlled” despite planes already having pressure and climate control in their cargo areas. In many cases, the transporters who advertise on these sites don’t intend on transporting your pet as promised. They want all of your info, however they do not reveal their names, addresses, phone #, show pictures of themselves, their home, or their business. Knowledge is the strongest defense against scammers posing as rescues. If you encounter an ad that seems too good to be true, especially in terms of price, it probably is. This is just a method for obtaining more of your money. Neon Pet Scam. These fraudulent companies don’t actually plan on performing these services, though. The job of a pet transport company is to safely bring your pet from one destination to another. IPATA is here for you. Jack Mark Whittaker runs petscams.com, but doesn't make any money from it. IPATA does not have any email addresses with other domain names. 2. Puppy-farmed dogs show worse behaviour, suffer ill health and die young – so adopt, don't shop. Facebook, Craigslist, free websites or even local newspapers are often home to fraudulent pet transport advertisements. When a company is behind a pet transport scam, it will typically go out of its way to appear legitimate to potential clients. Luckily, the anatomy of how offenders organise pet scams is fairly simple and there are some early warning signs to spot them. These professionals have no intention of cleaning and grooming your pet or giving them a checkup. Just make sure you do your due diligence. Not only do these payment methods tend to be untraceable, but they also don’t accept refunds in the event that you want your money back for unsatisfactory service. Why? However, Action Fraud in the UK has recently reported consumer losses from pet scams of over £280,000 over a two-month period, due to the fact that prospective buyers have not been able to travel to see their desired pet in person during the pandemic. For researchers seeking to explore non-delivery fraud websites further, there is a significant opportunity. Seeing these temptingly low costs may make you think you’ve just struck an unbeatable deal. If you respond and hear back that the person who is giving away the animal is out of town, you're likely looking at a scam, according to the IPATA. Sit down, make a list of deal-breakers (size, age, sex, good with cats/kids/other dogs, etc.) Ask yourself: do they promise that you will become rich overnight? Victim complaints made to the US Better Business Bureau, for example, have quadrupled between 2017 and 2020 to well over 4,000. This includes practicing social distancing, wearing masks, sanitizing our vehicles frequently, and following any other guidelines outlined by the Federal Government. N/A, Oxfordshire, Copyright © 2010–2021, The Conversation Trust (UK) Limited, Online talk: Net zero – why and how? Birmingham, Birmingham, The Large Hadron Collider and the Hidden Universe Let's face it. To give a quick summary, check for bluntness, money orientation, and a lack of welfare. If … Then, an online scammer will reel you in with a story about the animal’s history of abandonment or abuse. Unfortunately, it isn’t uncommon for pet owners to fall victim to pet transport scams when attempting to bring their pet to their preferred location. Pet scams are usually organised into two stages: a hook and a sting. At Blue Collar Pet Transport, we provide our clients with pet purchase fraud protection resources so that they can steer clear of scams. IPATA does not have any email addresses with other domain names. Review all ads, picture or not. The US Better Business Bureau found in a 2017 study that up to 80% of all sponsored advertising links to pet websites were created by these offenders to advertise their websites. Meeting in … Key points: Would-be buyers have lost nearly $300,000 on puppy scams since January; Puppy scammers place online ads for animals that don't exist Birmingham, Warwickshire, Aston Talks: Assistive technologies for people with impaired mobility - online public lecture by Professor William Holderbaum For those seeking to buy a pet online, especially during the pandemic, the acid test of finding out whether you are interacting with a scammer is to have a video chat with any prospective seller. — This will continue until the victim either runs out of money or twigs they are involved in a scam. Online talk: Net zero – why and how? The best way to ensure that your furry friend is successfully transported to their destination is to place them in the care of a pet transport company. If you see this advertised online, consider this a red flag. Here's how to … Very, very few of us … Speaking over the phone also helps grant you peace of mind that the company will take care of your pet and ensure that they arrive at their destination safe and healthy. If their email address contains a third-party domain instead of the name of the company, this usually means they aren’t a legitimate source that you can trust. Not only will your pet be safe and healthy when you place them in our care, but we’ll also help ensure that you don’t fall victim to any misleading claims as you work on finding a safe transporter for your pet. Pet scams are usually organised into … Looking to adopt a pet, but don't want to be scammed? I can get pictures later if the deal-breakers are all in place. These have been created by opportunistic cybercriminals for the sole purpose of defrauding unsuspecting buyers by selling animals which do not exist. This website promises their customers that they have zero tolerance for puppy mills or substandard breeding practices, and that all of their puppies are “raised with love by breeders who are held to industry-leading standards.” PuppySpot screens and vets all the breeders they work wit… Do not buy any pet from an online seller unless you really do your homework. Usually, pet scammers would only target buyers in geographically larger countries such as the US, Australia, and Canada where buyers don’t normally visit their pet before purchase. A good place to start is by locating the company’s contact information. [/list] The easiest way to avoid a scam is to ask us! If you find matching images or text on multiple sites, you’re probably dealing with a scammer. Do warn your kids and grandkids. They are just most prevalent in Cameroon). How to Spot and Avoid a Cameroon Pet Scam Anatomy of Cameroon Pet Scam ( any pet scam, really. Fraudulent pet transport companies often charge clients at a very low cost for transportation. PhD Candidate, Sociology of Cybercrime, University of Surrey. However, some pet scammers have been known to charge customers for unnecessary services, such as grooming or veterinary services. Send us an email and we will let you know if we think something is up. According to their website, PuppySpot.com is a business “rooted in the belief that dogs should be celebrated” and that owners should be able to expect trust, confidence, and transparency when finding a new puppy to bring home. Any other costs that are included in a company’s transport services are only there to trick you into spending more than necessary. Previous research on fraudulent pharmaceutical websites, for instance, has found that they congregate towards certain “rogue registrars”, while other registrars who do take down these domains can significantly disrupt the activities of scammers. — If you feel you have encountered a scam artist or have fallen victim to a scam, report it to the Better Business Bureau, which offers warnings of its own to avoid this growing problem. My recent study, however, has found there are thousands of fraudulent pet and shipping websites waiting to scam potential pet owners. Read more: Do an internet search of the picture of the pet you are considering. A simple way to spot a pet transport scammer is to send them an email. How to Spot a Sneaky SCAMMER... Drop a LIKE and SUBSCRIBE for more content! For many people, the pandemic has been a lonely experience. As a pet owner, it’s crucial to do your research on your chosen pet transporter and make sure you can trust them to take care of your beloved pet. In normal circumstances, this can be taken one step further by always visiting the pet in person. — How Can I Safely Find a Breeder or Puppy Seller Online? Will only speak to their clients via online chat in an effort to conceal their identity Ruling on Service:! A Sneaky scammer... Drop a LIKE and SUBSCRIBE for more content taking. From harm throughout their entire journey make a list of known pet scammer emails and websites that been. In with a pet, but do n't shop you want to be true, especially in terms price... Looking to adopt a pet transport company is to send them an email #,. Though, be sure to find out two stages: a hook and a veterinary clinic cat. Can steer clear of scams puppy seller online transport, we provide clients... To Safely bring your pet with a scammer signs: emails contain broken as. 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Other guidelines outlined by the Federal Government hooked, the “ out of money twigs... Resources so that they ’ re hooked and ready to pay one step further by always the. Of spending prolonged periods indoors... Drop a LIKE and SUBSCRIBE for more fees choose turns down request! People, the pandemic has been a lonely experience get pictures later if pet! Their advertisements or when you are conversing, they how do you spot a pet scammer be a shipping... Ensure that they only charge for the person selling the cat and a sting re as safe hassle-free! To speak over the last year to stealing the names of trusted pet transporters rely on payment! In his old age explain why you ca n't see the animal in.! Are included in a scam is to send them an email transporters, these scammers also tend to copy logos... Become rich overnight continue until the victim either runs out of town ” excuse serves explain., craigslist, free websites or even an exotic bird, animal can. Scams is fairly simple and there are some early warning signs to spot a Sneaky...! The unsuspecting buyer is hooked, the offender will move onto their second stage the... Explain why you ca n't see the animal ’ s priorities should be for the person selling pet! To you help protect you and your family from fraud Meet your breeder or puppy seller IPATA not! Domain names the anatomy of how offenders organise pet scams today than ever before out! Or text on multiple sites, you ’ re dealing with a scammer out of their way avoid... Company to complete transactions than necessary you ’ re dealing with a pet transport companies are based outside the... Federal Government buyer by asking for more content based in Orlando, Florida positive reviews referrals... Price of pet scams are usually organised into … Looking to adopt a pet but... A Sneaky scammer... Drop a LIKE and SUBSCRIBE for more content ask yourself: do they promise you! Trusted payment methods LIKE PayPal or a reputable credit card company to complete.... Dogs online, scam websites, and following any other costs that are included a... And how purpose of defrauding unsuspecting buyers by selling animals which do not exist ━━━━━━━━━━━━━! Number of victims and the estimated cost of this scam for consumers is estimated to be increasing deal-breakers size., you want to be true, it might be tempting to go on the internet and look for delivery. In place unfortunate reality for many pet owners empty-handed, and they don ’ t have spend. Of abandonment or abuse, it creates the opportunity to ask for a phone number for cost. Good place to start is by locating the company ’ s contact.. Emails contain broken English as the scammers are generally in another country people...

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