MILWAUKEE (WITI) — A good-looking car at a good-looking price is all Bob Adams wanted — but as he explained to FOX6’s Contact 6, he was nearly scammed!
He went online and found a 2009 Denali with just 23,000 miles on it for just $23,000. The seller said the car is in Omaha, Nebraska and is ready to be shipped.
“If for any reason you find something you don’t like about it,” Adams says as he reads from an email that was sent to him, “you can send it back at my expense.”
He looked up from the email and said, “sounded like a great deal.”
Bob was about to transfer the $23,000 to the seller but wanted to check one more thing.
“I Googled the VIN number and the VIN number popped up,” Adams explains. “[It was] that Denali, but it was at a dealership in Tennessee!”
Remember, the seller said the vehicle was in Omaha.
It turns out that pictures Bob saw online were taken from the website of a dealership in Tennessee called “Harper Fiat.” The real price – nearly $40,000 – much more than the $23,000 being offered.
“I said [to the seller] I’m curious as to why this car is at a dealership when you said it was at another location, boxed up and ready to go,” Adams says. “And I never got a response to it.”
Ran Hoth, with the Wisconsin Better Business Bureau, says this kind of scam – unfortunately – is simple.
“All they’ve done,” Hoth explains, “is they’ve lifted content from another website and made it look very real.”
“The huge issue is what’s real is when you can talk to somebody in person, or when you can see somebody in person and know that you’ve got a trusted transaction,” Hoth adds.
Good thing Bob took the extra step and Googled the VIN number!
“I’m happy to say I saved $23,000 and a lot more headache by doing a little research,” Adams says with a smile.
If you’re thinking about buying something from someone you don’t know, over the internet, ask good questions and do your homework!