Alert: Fraudulent invoice scam catching out car buyers and sellers

Hackers, fraudsters and scammers can wreak havoc and devastation on both individuals and businesses and stay across the latest tricks and schemes these criminals are using is challenging. Currently, there is a scam being used that involves fraudulent business invoices. Incidents of these have been reported in several diverse industries including in the trades and have left victims out of pocket for significant amounts of money.

While there are sadly many scams running and authorities report an increase in activity due to COVID-19 issues, this one has caught our attention at Jade Car Loans as it involves a car purchase. Reportedly two buyers of a high-end vehicle brand have become victims of the fraudulent invoice scam.

This is a red flag for our team and we bring it to the attention of all car buyers, whether a Jade customer or not. It may appear that buyers handling their own vehicle purchase settlement may be most exposed.

Fraudulent Email Scam: Explainer

The basics of this scam are:

  • The scammers hack a business’ email system and intercept genuine emails with genuine invoices to the business’ customers for goods/services which have genuinely been delivered.
  • The scammers change the banking details on the invoice to their own bank details and then send the invoice to the customer.
  • The unsuspecting customer, who has received the goods/services from the supplier, proceeds to pay the invoice for the amount to the banking details on the invoice.
  • The scammer and not the supplier receives the funds.
  • The supplier then seeks payment for the unpaid invoice from their customer only to uncover the scam.
    Read for more information.

Reports of this happening have appeared a number of times in the media and most recently in regard to payment for a motor vehicle. Car buyers and sellers are strongly advised to be aware of the existence of this scam and if you are handling your own purchase/payment take steps to ensure you don’t become a victim.

Vehicle Ownership Scam

Another scam reported in the news recently involved persons renting cars and then on-selling them as their own vehicles. We don’t have the specifics of this case, but we suspect it most likely involved selling privately to private buyers.

Fortunately, in these cases, the perpetrators were caught and charged by police. But it highlights the caution and care which must be taken when buying a car privately.

Avoid Getting Caught

  • If making your own payment for a motor vehicle, it can be advisable to double check the invoice payment details with the seller, both private and dealer, via a means other than email.
  • Checking may involve phoning them on a number that you are confident is genuine, not necessarily a contact number on the invoice as that may have been altered.
  • Pay particular attention to the name of the bank account on the EFT payment details. Dealers can have different business names to the name of the dealership, their pty ltd company or as part of a group. But it is worth checking if you are in the slightest doubt.
  • When purchasing any motor vehicle, buyers should make the necessary ID, rego and PPSR checks to confirm the ownership and identity of the seller and the vehicle. Especially if paying cash and not seeking finance for the purchase.

How Jade Can Assist Car Buyers

While we are not privy to the specific details of the incidents reported, it does highlight the benefits of using a finance-broker style lender such as Jade Car Loans to handle your new car finance. Our services are available to both personal car buyers and business vehicle purchases. Both individuals and businesses are welcome.

While we constantly stress the benefits of using Jade’s services to source cheap car loan interest rates, our services offer car buyers a number of other very important benefits.

Our customers are assigned a highly-trained and licensed finance professional to handle the entire car loan process. Our consultants handle the vehicle checks to ensure the validity of the vehicle and ensure all details match up. The ID of private sellers is checked to ensure they are the legal owner of a vehicle.

While handling the loan negotiations and assisting customers with the application paperwork, we also handle the critical final step of settlement. This is the stage when the lender pays the seller for the vehicle. We liaise with lender and seller directly to affect the payment. Our professional consultants and our lenders are trained to look out for any inaccuracies in invoices and other vehicle sale paperwork.

Unfortunately, fraudsters, hackers and scammers are a reality and can operate very sophisticated schemes which may not be identified and detected by authorities until victims are caught out. If purchasing a vehicle with finance, using a reliable and reputable lender to assist you can deliver many benefits.

Contact  1300 000 003 to discuss how we can assist.

DISCLAIMER: IN REGARD TO MISREPRESENTATIONS AND ERRORS CONTAINED IN THE MATERIAL AS PRESENTED, LIABILITY IS NOT ACCEPTED. THE DETAILS AND CONTENT IS PROVIDED FOR CAR BUYERS AND INDIVIDUALS AND BUSINESS SEEKING FINANCE PURELY AS GENERAL INFORMATION. THIS IS NOT PROVIDED AS THE ONLY SOURCE OF FINANCIAL INFORMATION. ANYONE THAT CONSIDERS THAT NEED FINANCIAL ADVICE ABOUT THEIR SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS SHOULD SEEK THEIR OWN FINANCIAL ADVISOR.