Urgent warning over new iPhones sold online
An Australian man is warning others after purchasing a brand new ‘iPhone’ on Facebook Marketplace only to find out it was a fake phone, which operates as an old Android.
Josiah said he purchased the phone, which was advertised as the new iPhone Promax 14, for $1200 earlier in the year.
At the time, the sale seemed legitimate as the seller insisted the phone was brand new, sealed and even came with a receipt.
Watch the latest news and stream for free on 7plus >>
“The guy claimed it was new and was able to prove it using the serial number,” Josiah said.
“I felt like a fool believing it was genuine.”
Josiah met up with the seller, out near Parramatta in western Sydney, and says the man even gave him a JB Hi-Fi receipt along with the sealed phone.
When Josiah got home, he was excited to use his brand new device.
However, he quickly discovered the phone had no iCloud capability and was behaving like an Android device.
“I called Apple and they confirmed the serial number was genuine, but it was a fake phone,” he told 7NEWS.com.au.
“The guy also gave me a fake receipt claiming he bought it from JB Hi-Fi but upon a closer look at the receipt I realised it was fake.”
Josiah said he was devastated to learn he had purchased a fake phone and wanted to spread further awareness to other buyers.
“It really hurt me but I knew there was little I could do,” he said.
“So I simply move on and try to warn others to be extra vigilant when buying on Facebook marketplace.
“The activities of these scammers online, especially on Facebook Marketplace are alarming.”
He went on to share details of the incident online in the hopes of warning others, and listed red flags he noticed.
“They will never give you their real address, they always prefer a public meet-up and are sometimes willing to come to you,” he posted along with images of the fake phone.
“They will try to rush you and get the cash from you and move on.
“But, trust me, 99 per cent of those phones are fake.”
Josiah added some scammers would even have fake receipts from JB Hi-Fi or Apple.
“If you check those receipts, they don’t often carry the date of purchase,” he warned.
“They can compromise the price easily and will claim it’s an unwanted gift.”
Josiah added that another red flag is if the seller doesn’t allow you to test the phone in their presence.
Other Marketplace users thanked the buyer for sharing the warning, with many adding they were shocked at how genuine the phones being listed often appeared.
“Thank you for sharing. These criminals need to be locked up,” one person said.
“When something is too good to be true — it usually is!” another added.
“I’d love one of these ... the iPhone look with an Android operating system!” another person joked.
According to the Australian ComPetition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) there was a 47.9 per cent increase in reports of classified and online shopping scams via social media in 2022, compared to the previous year.
The ACCC recommends looking out for the following when purchasing goods on online platforms such as Facebook Marketplace:
- Watch out for websites or sellers advertising at very low prices, often lower than comparable or identical items on other websites.
- Be careful if the website or seller is very new. If possible, try and ascertain how many sales the seller has, and the period of time they’ve been selling. If the store is on social media, read the comments and search for independent reviews on the internet — noting that sometimes there may be fake positive reviews.
- Many people report losing money after communicating with the scammer over email to discuss a purchase on a digital marketplace. Always conduct your transaction through a secure platform.
- Always look for secure payment options such as PayPal or Apple/Google Pay rather than providing your credit card details to the seller. Scammers often ask you to pay by non-secure payment methods such as wire, bank or international funds transfers, money orders, pre-loaded gift cards, and cryptocurrency. It’s rare to recover money sent this way.
- If you believe your social media account has been compromised, change your password right away, use the ‘forgot my password’ option if you can’t log in, check for recent activity, notify your contacts and make sure your security software is up to date.
- Report scams to the ACCC via the Scamwatch report a scam page.
Russia claims Ukraine is launching major attacks; Kyiv accuses Moscow of misinformation
Dozens of dangerous rail crossings will be eliminated with $570 million in grants
US Navy says Iran Revolutionary Guard fast-attack boats 'harassed' ship in Strait of Hormuz
Dropbox drops integration with Google Docs, Sheets
France rolls out the red carpet for EV battery factories
YouTube TV faces issues with family sharing accounts
Gmail gets AI upgrade to make searching easier
Majority of EU countries against network fee levy on Big Tech
Canada facing rising threat from cyberattacks, defence minister
Android customers warned over iRecorder screen recorder app secretly recording spying on users
‘Extinction from AI’: Global leaders sign stark warning about artificial intelligence