White Van Scam: Morentz Audio Speaker Fraud
The speaker scam was common in the 1980s and is believed to be the origin of the use of the term "high-end",and despite widespread information about the scam on consumer forums and watchdog sites, the scams continue operating across several continents.
The white van scam has also infiltrated the internet with scammers presenting online store-fronts, "official" Facebook pages, Craigslist ads, and eBay accounts to advertise and peddle their goods. Be aware that the online storefronts are meant to help legitimize the shoddy products and high MSRP prices when customers look them up online. For example, a storefront or eBay listing may display a "high-end" MSRP price of $2,500 for one item but another listing will drastically mark it down to around $300.
Avoiding Morentz Audio Scam
- Remain hyper-vigilant if approached by an individual(s) selling merchandise out of their vehicle;
- Google or internet search the company name or description of the situation, and add the word "scam" at the end before searching, which may help identify potential scams;
- Be aware that brand names may sound similar to well-known and regarded manufacturers;
- Ask the seller very specific questions about the product, origin, brand;
- Do not feel pressured to succumb to the seller's urgency to purchase immediately;
- Closely inspect the merchandise before buying;
- If it seems too good to be true, it probably is;
- When shopping online, use a credit card rather than a debit card; credit cards give you much greater consumer protection if your information is stolen.
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