In a pontoon boat scam that has surfaced on the Internet, criminals advertise a pontoon boat with all the trimmings for a very low and sometimes unrealistic price.
Richmond, VA (12/8/2010) — The National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C) would like you to exercise caution when purchasing items online.
There is a pontoon boat scam that has surfaced on the Internet. The scam consists of a seller advertising a pontoon boat with all the trimmings for a very low and sometimes unrealistic price.
The seller is willing to part with the item for such a low price because he claims he is in the military and will have to deploy immediately. He will accept whatever money he can get quickly and is willing to give the buyer the deal of the lifetime in the process, and he even offers to pay shipping.
The seller then asks for the buyer to finalize the purchase by sending money through a third party site. The seller, in some cases, will advise the buyer to use a bogus buyer protection program where he can then ship the boat for half of the payment upfront and, upon inspection, if the buyer does not like it, is able to return the boat for a full refund. The seller makes the process seem even more attractive by stating that the money will be held by the buyer protection program and not released to the seller until the buyer confirms satisfaction with an email. Needless to say, the boat will never be shipped and the buyer is out of whatever money was sent to the bogus buyer protection program that is run by the scammer.
NW3C would like to remind all consumers to exercise caution when purchasing items online, and if you are a victim of an online scam please contact your local authorities and file a claim with the Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov. The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), a partnership of the FBI and NW3C, has received more than 2 million complaints since its inception in 2000.
Funded for over thirty years primarily by the Department of Justice (DOJ), through the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), NW3C is a leader in the fight against economic and high-tech crime. For more information, please visit www.nw3c.org.