BuyYourCar warns car buyers not to dial 070 for a used car.
October 18, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Business NewsBuyYourCar.co.uk, the UK portal for new, used and lease car sales in the UK warns unsuspecting car buyers to be on their guard for premium rate phone scams.
Although many people are aware of the premium rate numbers beginning with 09, many are unaware of the premium rate numbers beginning with 070 – even though they’ve been around for many years.
It’s something that anyone buying or selling a car needs to be aware of, whether they are online or going through more traditional channels.
Protecting the customer
BuyYourCar recently added over 40,000 used cars to its site, and this number is set to double over the next few weeks. But even with all these used cars going on the site, the BuyYourCar system was watching out for potential con artists.
The alert was sounded when an advertisement for an E-Class Mercedes was placed on the site by a private seller. The number the seller entered into the used car advert began with 070, a premium rate number that can cost more than 50p a minute to call from a UK landline.
Once the advert was placed, the system notified the Used Car team at BuyYourCar who acted immediately to remove offending advert from the site to prevent any unsuspecting used car buyer from making a rather expensive call. A quick look at the details the user had entered quickly showed that the car did not belong to them, and the address they had entered was also false.
No risk used car advertising
The scam artist had taken advantage of cheap advertising costs on BuyYourCar.co.uk. Although some sites charge a used car private seller £20 or £30 to advertise their car for a number of weeks, BuyYourCar aims to remove the risk to the seller –allowing them to advertise their car until sold for only £4.95.
Obviously this deal was to be exploited by the scam artist who obviously knew that he’d receive a return on his £4.95 investment after only 10 calls or so to his number. His plan was probably to let the calls go to his voicemail, with no intention of returning any of them.
Not only Buyers Beware
It’s not only buyers who need to be aware of the cost of calling an 070 number. A young lady from Bristol, advertising her MX5 on BuyYourCar.co.uk was contacted by someone posing as a potential buyer stating his interest in her car, and asking her to call him on 070…
As soon as the enquiry was sent via the form on the website, the BuyYourCar team was alerted. They were able to warn the seller and make her aware of the cost of calling an 070 number. All this service for only £4.95!
Dave Long, Managing Director of BuyYourCar, said
“We’re in a privileged position, and it’s our duty to the users of the site to make sure they are protected from such scams. We feel it’s part of the overall service we offer. The public needs to be aware of the costs of calling 09 and 070 numbers.
The 070 numbers are the biggest problem, as many are unaware that they exist – and could mistake them for a normal mobile phone number.
The scam is not limited to the Internet, and people need to be vigilant. If you receive a missed call or a text to your phone from a number you don’t recognise – stop, and think twice before you even consider calling them back. It could save you a few quid.”
What about the scam advertiser who put the used Mercedes on the site – did he get a refund?
“We had to remove the advertisement from the site, and we recognise that a genuine mistake might have been made and there was no intention to scam our site users. So we sent him a full refund for the £4.95. We hope he gets his cheque soon…”
For further information please contact: Daniel Phillips on 0845 644 8220
NOTES FOR EDITORS:
BuyYourCar.co.uk was launched in August 2006 after an extensive period of research. Managing Director Dave Long has worked in the car industry for over 15 years and has vast experience in Used Cars, New Cars and Fleet Sales. He was top national salesman for Renault for five consecutive years and more recently built up two fleet departments within different Honda franchises, taking both to unparalleled success. He brings the experience and knowledge that makes BuyYourCar unique.