Buyer Beware

Apr 16, 2014

Rather fail with honor than succeed by fraud.   —Sophocles

We love hearing from customers: your successes, your struggles, your critiques, your accolades. Whatever it is, we value your dedication to get in touch and keep the dialog flowing. Unfortunately, every so often, we hear from someone who has been scammed by an online site selling—or claiming to sell—authentic Concept2 equipment. That one's a love/hate: we're happy you reached out; we're really not happy about why you needed to.

Fraud has likely been around for as long as mankind (Sophocles lived over 2000 years ago, and he was writing about it). And, sadly, it'll likely be here long into the future. Don't fall prey! Here are some tips for identifying potential scam sites selling Concept2 equipment.

  1. One of the reasons Concept2 sells factory-direct is so that we can keep our pricing as affordable as possible. We don't put our equipment on sale, because our philosophy is to offer the lowest, business-sustainable pricing possible all the time. If you find a price online that is significantly lower than our factory-direct pricing, proceed with caution.
  2. Call the numbers advertised on the potential scam site. In our experience, they are often disconnected.
  3. Note the contact email addresses listed on the site. They are often through a generic service such as Gmail or Hotmail.
  4. Beware of sites that require pre-payment via Green Dots, Money Transfer, or other methods in which it is difficult to refute fraudulent charges.
  5. Give us a call to see if the company selling our products is one of our known resellers. If they're not, or if we don't have them in our database, it's probably best to steer clear of their offers.

If you fall victim to a scam, here are some steps you can take:

  1. Contact your credit card company to refute charges.
  2. Report the issue to your local authorities.
  3. Report the issue to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (www.ic3.gov), which is a partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center.
  4. Report the issue to us, so we can contact our lawyers. The more info you're willing to share, the better:
    • Your name
    • Email address
    • Phone number
    • Amount of loss
    • Date of transaction
    • Product purchased (model name)
    • Any documentation (copies of invoices, etc.) you may have received from the scam company
    • Any other information you feel is relevant

While we will do our best to have fraudulent sites taken down, we can't make any promises, and we can’t be responsible for their fraud. After all, we have no relationship with them, and we don’t even know who or where they are. But we’ll try!

Ultimately, you need to be careful and do your research. As they say, if an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Tags: Concept2

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