Online shopping scam warning after mobile phone rip-off

FRASER Coast police have warned people to beware of online shopping scams following a report of a mobile phone rip-off.

Senior Constable Melanie Ryan said the police received a report over the weekend from an online shopper who bought a mobile phone from a seller listed on Facebook's Buy/Swap and Sell page.

"Unfortunately when the buyer attempted to purchase a new SIM card for the phone, they discovered the phone had been reported as stolen," Snr Const Ryan said.

"The buyer was unable to keep the phone and also initially lost the money spent on the purchase."

Snr Const Ryan said a full investigation would be made by police regarding this incident.

"Police from Maryborough district are reminding people who use online shopping facilities to be careful when purchasing goods," Snr Const Ryan said.

"Sadly, police receive a lot of reports from the public about similar purchases from various websites.

"Whilst most of these sites are legitimate, it is buyer beware."

Mobile phones are small and often easy to conceal, therefore police are asking people to ensure their property including mobile phones are secured and/or not left unattended or on display in vehicles.

People should remain vigilant at home and keep their phones in a safe place.

Residents who are concerned about online scams can find out more information online at


Scam Warning Signs

  • Product is advertised at a very low price
  • The seller and any initial bidders have a very poor rating on an auction site
  • The other party wants to complete the sale outside of the auction site (if you do this, you lose any protections that the site operator offers to its users)
  • The other party insists on immediate payment, or payment by electronic funds transfer or a wire service
  • The online shopping website does not provide adequate information about privacy, terms and conditions of use, dispute resolution or contact details

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