Are you looking to make a big online purchase, like a car, RV or boat? If the so-called seller asks for payment in the form of Amazon gift cards, walk away from the deal and report it to authorities.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, scammers are trying to cheat consumers by posing online as sellers of a big-ticket item, then requesting Amazon gift cards as a form of payment. The FTC warns:
Don’t do it. Amazon gift cards aren’t a way to pay someone — you can only use them at Amazon.com. So if someone asks you to pay with an Amazon gift card, it’s a scam. If you share the code from an Amazon gift card with someone, you’re giving that person control of the money on the card. By the time you realize it’s a scam and report it, the money will likely be gone.
Raleigh’s WTVD-TV says North Carolina resident Monique London was nearly tricked into forking over Amazon gift cards for a used car she found online in 2016.
“(The seller) said I’ll send you over the information from Amazon car payments — that way, we are both protected and you won’t have any issues and both of us can feel safe during this transaction,” London tells WTVD.
She says she became suspicious of the transaction after reading through the invoice the seller emailed her. When London refused to pay for the vehicle with Amazon gift cards, the seller cut off contact with her.
Amazon warns about this type of scam here.
In their attempts to swindle consumers out of hard-earned cash, fraudsters are also requesting payment in Amazon gift cards for things such as electronics, taxes, bail money, cable bills and utility bills, according to the FTC.
If you’ve been a victim of a scam like this, report it to the FTC.
Have you been asked to pay for a big-ticket item with Amazon gift cards? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook.