Beware: too good to be true - that is mostly true!
Internet fraud: Precaution when buying and selling online
Generally, as with all aspects of life, we can save ourselves a lot of heartache with a good dose of common sense.
The classic example: if an offer looks too good to be true, it is probably just that (see Point 1)!
If unsure, simply stick to the simple rule: cash for goods. Many online fraudsters work from abroad so you will never use a cash transaction. Never accept cheques!
In many countries with high unemployment rates, many people see Internet fraud as the only way of making money and are therefore highly resourceful and also professionally organised.
Even if you make a spontaneous, emotional purchase, the proper papers are essential:
A detailed purchase agreement and a valid vehicle documents and, to check the seller's identity, driving licence documents are essential (see Point 5).
Private market - Information on contact forms and mail contacts
Several private customers have informed us that they have received dubious e-mail requests in English.
These concerned cheque fraudsters.
We have taken the corresponding technical measures to protect your contact details on the contact form as much as possible from these fraudsters.
Enabling/disabling contact via e-mail:
You can decide whether your e-mail address should be displayed.
If the e-mail address is not displayed, someone can contact you via the contact form or phone only.
Procedure to not display the email address:
- Log in with your details under «Sell»
- Select «Edit account» under «Your account details»
- There select «No» under «Show in ad» on the line of the e-mail address
- Then click on «Save changes»
Below are a few helpful tips
1. The offer is well below the current market value
Caution is required if you find offers online which are well below current market value.
Particular care should be taken if you find promises such as 'Why pay more?'
You should be suspicious of a motorcycle on sale at more than 20% under the market value.
People selling vehicles are fully aware of the value thanks to the Internet.
Compere the price with other, similar vehicles and on mototrader.ch.
Too good to be true? - then it probably is!
2. Never buy unseen from unknown senders
Buying a vehicle is a matter of trust. You should therefore never make a payment to a private seller before seeing the vehicle.
A general inspection of the vehicle is a must.
Only when in possession of the vehicle documents and key are you legally the owner of the motorcycle.
3. Never make a down payment
Making a deposit to reserve a vehicle is unusual.
You don't actually know the receiver of the payment, the vehicle maybe doesn't even exist.
4. Never accept cheques
Payments by Western Union or similar organisations are unusual for normal payment transactions.
As the payer, you don't have the receiver's ID, you don't know where the money goes.
5. Never without documents
The following documents must be presented when purchasing a vehicle:
- Seller/owner ID. Check the names in the ID and vehicle documents, including photo.
- Vehicle registration document. Check the chassis number.
- Written sales contract. This is the only way of taking any legal steps, if required (speedometer manipulation, vehicle involved in an accident)
6. Do not accept an escrow service
Dubious sellers may offer you an escrow service.
We check advertisements for misuse.
However, we can offer no guarantee against the online publication of dubious adverts.
7. In short: buying a motorcycle
- Be suspicious of offers which are too attractive
- Never buy unseen from unknown sellers
- Never make a down payment as a reservation
- Never without original vehicle documents
- Check seller ID
- Establish a sales contract
8. Summary: selling a motorcycle
- Be suspicious of e-mail enquiries from abroad
- Never except cheque payments, only cash
- Cheque buyer ID
- Establish a sales contract