Beware of scammers when shopping online

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I have never done much in the way of online shopping. I prefer to shop locally where I can see and feel the product, be it clothing or other merchandise.

But with the inconvenience brought about by the Covid-19 coronavirus and the seeming unavailability in the Sault of a Gotham Steel smart smokeless BBQ grill for sale, I decided I would give it a try. On Nov. 24 I ordered the grill, which I had seen advertised on Facebook, from an outfit called JustFavorite. Regular price was $79.99; sale price was $39.99. Pretty good deal, I thought, the satisfaction continuing when I got an almost immediate reply saying, “Hi, Doug, we’re getting your order ready to be shipped. We will notify you when it has been sent.”

The satisfaction I was feeling has since disappeared because, it seems, so has the company and my grill. Since that initial reply I have not heard another word about it, neither at the company’s initiative or in reply to my queries.

When I attempt to view my order or visit the company’s store, I get the following:

  • Oops, something went wrong.
  • What happened?
  • This shop is unavailable
  • What can I do?
  • Press the back button on your browser.
  • Return to the previous page.”

Looking at my bill I probably should have had some suspicion as there was no tax. This leads me to believe that the outfit putting out this add was just there to collect all the money it could and then disappear. My BMO Mastercard is now looking into it but if the outfit is no longer reachable by it, I know I will not be getting my money back.

My wife had the same experience. For a Christmas gift she ordered a FitTech smart watch that never came.

I ordered a KoreTrak smart watch at a price of $49.95 that takes your blood pressure, your heart rate and does a host of other things. The watch does seem to do all that, most of which I will never use. I would use the watch as a watch but the thing is, while it gives me access to all these features at all times, it only seems to allow me to see what time it is when it wants to.

And there is another little problem that I have pretty well decided to just let ride. As I could get a second watch for $24.95, I thought I would do this to give a watch to a grandson, not knowing that my wife already had that in the works.

I got the two watches I ordered in one package but got two separate charges on my Mastercard, one for $79.22 and one for $33.60. The cost should have been $74.90 for the two watches plus tax of $9.73, which would be far less that the two charges total of $112.82. However, I think I will just eat any loss and take it as a lesson learned.

My wife emailed FitTech several times and even got a reply to her first email.

  • “Here’s the tracking number,” the line read but there was no tracking number.
  • “Here’s the link where you can track the order,” another line read but there was no link.
  • “The courier’s latest tracking information online will depend on how often the package is scanned along the way so please check back occasionally.” Except there is no information as to where to check.

And [email protected] is no longer replying to her queries. I will no longer buy from an advertisement on Facebook. I think it is much safer to keep to such legitimate companies as Amazon.

Anyway, I just thought I would pass our experiences along in case others have found themselves in the same situation. If this kind of scam is widespread, we have to get the word out.

A few other thoughts…

I NOTE THE OPINION people at Postmedia are deeply concerned about excessive enforcement of minor infractions in regard to people not wearing masks. It says there have been scenes of police dragging people out of stores for not wearing masks, that it would be better just to remind the people that they should be wearing masks.

Sorry. I’m with the enforcers on this one. Anyone who refuses to wear a mask and refuses to leave the store should be forcibly removed if law enforcement is present and the proprietor requests it.

The opinion people say they support indoor mask mandates but allow that health officials describe masks simply as an added layer of protection. They don’t say protection for whom, maybe because they don’t know. Well, it is protection for everyone.

A mask may offer the wearer some protection but they mainly protect others.

A person not wearing a mask in a retail establishment will face no or at least little danger if everyone else is masked. But that unmasked person can possibly be a danger to everyone else in the establishment.

So to go light on those not wearing masks? I don’t think so.

IT IS GOOD to see the authorities going after those who invaded the U.S. Capitol last week. Some should face significant jail time. President Trump should be impeached for starting the invasion and convicted as that will prevent him from ever running for federal office again.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Amazon is reliable and will communicate with you. Beware of anything being shipped from China. An item I ordered in early November just arrived. When I questioned the slow delivery I was told by the shipper in China that due to the virus the flow of merchandise was very slow. They do not tell you that when you order and they take your money.

  2. The rule in our house is never click on Facebook ads. They’re like a lot of stuff for sale on Kijiji – beware. Search for things on a reputable site like Amazon.ca or search for the item you saw on the Facebook ad and if it’s a legitimate product you’ll see it on legitimate sites. Also, google the company name you see selling the item on Facebook and nine times out of ten you’ll see reviews on that seller that will help you in your decision.

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