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beware the credit-car scammers

Vehicle history check firm HPI is warning dealers to beware of a major credit-card scam.

Although the warning follows “more than a handful” of cases involving car dealers, there are lessons for the motorcycle industry. HPI says criminals are buying cars from dealers by using stolen or fraudulent credit cards, and quickly selling the vehicles on to another unsuspecting dealer before the credit-card companies has the opportunity to decline the original sale.

HPI says the problem is that the credit-card companies normally take a few days to establish a card is stolen or fraudulent.

HPI MD Neil Hodson said: ‘This is a very real and current threat to dealers, and franchised dealers are the main targets.

“They receive a cold call from the seller, often pretending to be a trader, offering the vehicle they’ve just bought from another dealer at a tempting £2000 below the CAP Clean price.

“Don’t be fooled by a deal that looks too good to be true. The log book won’t be in the trader’s name and the fraudster may send a driver to deliver the vehicle. The deal often involves a BACS payment, but the money is removed by the time the fraud is identified, leaving the dealer heavily out of pocket.”

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