The Better Business Bureau is alerting consumers to a relatively new scam that’s on the rise, known as “brushing”…
E-commerce fraud is a really big, big problem. It’s so large, it’s something that even Amazon struggles with on a daily basis, despite the company’s seemingly endless resources. Now, the problem is getting even more complicated due to a relatively new manipulative tactic that’s designed to help cheaters get a leg up on their legitimate competition.
The fraudulent technique is called “brushing.” Although it doesn’t have a sinister sounding name, what’s involved with the scam can easily mean serious implications for consumers on a very personal level. In fact, the scheme has enough potential to cause the Better Business Bureau to issue a stern warning.
BBB Warns Consumers about ‘Brushing’ Scam
“Brushing” is a practice in which unknown senders ship boxes of unordered merchandise from Amazon and/or other retailers right to personal addresses. Usually, the boxes are absent of return addresses and the unsuspecting recipients have no idea who ordered the unwanted items. Meanwhile, the scammers pass off the shipments as genuine, sent to verifiable addresses and then post fake, positive reviews in order to gain more exposure in the organic feed.
Unsurprisingly, the fraudsters behind the racket are foreign, third-party sellers (or their contractors) that send the products using addresses found on Amazon and other retail websites. In other words, they’ve somehow managed to get personal information, such as the recipients’ names and addresses, at the very least. Of course, this could mean they have even more personal data, including payment information.
Further complicating things is the possibility that porch pirates or porch thieves could see and steal the ostensibly valuable loot. That criminal mischief could quickly result in even more unwanted drama for recipients. This would unnecessarily complicate already extraordinary situations, unleashing even more inconvenience.