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Another One? Seasalt Cornwall Victim of Online Scam

Seasalt Cornwall Scam

Key Statement

While there are many victims in this case, Seasalt Cornwall is also a victim of their success.

Seasalt Cornwall is not behind the scammers and has no affiliation. However, their situation should be used for educational purposes to prevent more people from falling victim to this type of scam.

The company has issued a statement and is doing everything possible to ensure everything is taken down as soon as possible.


 

The Seasalt Cornwall Scam involves fraudsters creating fake social media ads and websites that offer enormous discounts on Seasalt Cornwall products. These scams lure shoppers with promises of up to 90% off on items like coats and dresses. Unfortunately, once you make a purchase, you never receive the items, and your money is gone.

Fake Social Media Ads:
Scammers post ads on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. These ads use official Seasalt Cornwall branding and showcase products at unbelievably low prices, such as £29 for a coat.

Fraudulent Websites:
Clicking these ads redirects you to a fake website that looks very similar to the official Seasalt Cornwall site. These sites use the Seasalt logo, images, and branding to appear legitimate. The difference? The domain. Their scammers have purchased a domain similar, spelling ‘Cornwall’ ‘Cornwall’ – which can be deceiving if you’re not paying attention.

Payment Collection:
On these fraudulent websites, you can add items to your cart and enter your payment information. However, after you complete your purchase, you receive no confirmation email or shipping updates. The scammers simply take your money and vanish.

Why people fell for the Seasalt Cornwall Scam

The Seasalt Cornwall Scam is effective because it leverages high-quality branding and professional-looking websites to appear authentic. The combination of deeply discounted prices and urgent, enticing slogans like “Warehouse Clearance Sale!” or “Store Closing Sale – All Items 90% Off!” convinces shoppers they are getting an incredible deal. This deception can fool even the most tech-savvy individuals if they are not careful.

But as mentioned, one of the main factors on a site that is still live today (22/05/24) spells Cornwall, Cornwoll. This can be very deceiving if you’re not paying full attention. The same applies at the payment section, where it said ‘Seasalts’ not ‘Seasalt’, as reported on a forum (see below).

However, we always follow the saying that if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. This is another one of those situations.

The company have since commented on the situation.

“We are taking this situation extremely seriously and we are carrying out every possible action to get these sites reported and removed. We have a specific process in place for dealing with this that includes reporting the sites to relevant authorities and third parties to have them taken down.”

[Quote reported by Falmouth Packet]

Seasalt Cornwall Scam [Mumsnet]
A user on a forum talking about falling for the Seasalt Cornwall Scam

How to Avoid Falling for These Scams

Be Skeptical of Unrealistic Discounts:
If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. Seasalt Cornwall offers discounts, but 90% off across the board is unrealistic.

Check Website Quality:
Look for red flags such as low-quality, distorted, or watermarked images, misspellings, and unusual domain names (e.g., .top, .shop).

Verify Contact Information:
Legitimate sites will have detailed contact information, including a customer service number, email, and physical address. Fake sites often lack these details or provide non-working contact info.

Use Secure Payment Methods:
Always use a credit card or a secure payment service like PayPal. Avoid bank transfers, as they offer less protection against fraud.

Research:
Before purchasing, check multiple reviews and verify the site’s authenticity. Look for reviews that mention whether customers received their orders and the quality of the items.

Watch for the URL:
Once again, scammers have taken advantage of people’s trusting nature by creating a domain similar to the brand. Always be on alert when shopping online.

What to do if you've been scammed

Act Quickly:
Contact your credit card provider immediately to report the fraudulent charges. The sooner you dispute the charges, the better your chances of getting a refund.

Notify Your Bank:
If you used a debit card, inform your bank about the fraud. Although debit cards offer less protection than credit cards, your bank may still be able to help.

Report the Scam:
Inform social media platforms like Facebook and TrustPilot about the scam to get the fraudulent accounts deactivated.

Monitor Your Accounts:
Keep an eye on your bank and credit card statements for any suspicious activity.

Avoid Recovery Scams:
Be wary of anyone claiming they can recover your money for a fee. Legitimate investigators do not ask for upfront payments.

Adjust Privacy Settings:
Be cautious about ad interactions and reduce the visibility of your future social media posts to avoid further targeting.

How Businesses Can Better Prevent Scams

To protect your brand from being used in scams:

Purchase Multiple Domain Variations:
Secure variations of your URL, such as .net, .com, .co.uk, .io, ai.

That said, as per this scenario, it’s now worth considering other domain variants of your brand – e.g – excellense-it.co.uk, rather than just excellence-it.co.uk

Monitor Online Presence:
Regularly check for any unauthorised use of your branding and report fraudulent sites or ads.

Educate Customers:
Inform your customers about where to find legitimate deals and how to recognise official communications from your company.

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