DAGUPAN CITY — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)–Pangasinan alerted the public anew against online scams and fraud as online shopping is considered a very convenient way to access goods and services.
Natalia Dalaten, officer-in-charge provincial director of the DTI-Pangasinan, said consumer must be aware of the risks, hassles and inconveniences of online shopping as goods brought online may incur defects and damages.
“As per issued advisory on online shopping fraud, the Office of the Cybercrime advises that to be protected against deceptive sales and frauds, consumers should consider that ‘prevention is better than cure’ which means that consumers and buyers must keep in mind the principle of ‘buyer beware’ in their online dealings,” Dalaten said.
She added that consumers should know and take note of the following so-called “red flags” of online shopping fraud and be vigilant enough in transmitting any personal information being asked.
Dalaten said consumer should always be aware that products advertised at very low prices compared to other websites are probably a fraud if it sounds too good to be true.
She said buyers should also consider poor consumer ratings and feedbacks when buying products online.
“Online sellers who ask you to pay by money transfer service or direct to their bank account rather than through the site’s preferred payment method is one of the red flags to consider when buying online,” she added.
Dalaten also warned consumers that websites, with limited or no information about privacy and their terms and conditions of use and with no contact details such as physical address and telephone, are probably a fraud.
Likewise, Dalaten added that if in doubt that online offers and promotion might be scam or fraudulent, it is better for the public to check it with the DTI office in Pangasinan located at the 2nd floor of Star Building, Arellano Street in Dagupan City. In Pangasinan, the public may call DTI office at telephone numbers (075) 515-3183 or 529-6177 or email at [email protected]., she said.