Danger, car shoppers – no longer content to try and convince the gullible that a deposed African ruler needs help storing his millions, internet scammers are now using the Edmunds.com name and logo to try and swindle money away from car buyers. According to Edmunds, the company has already shut down two sites that were hawking a supposed Edmunds-backed escrow service. Once you handed over your hard-earned money to what was supposed to be a trusted third-party, the crooks dropped off the face of the planet.

Edmunds doesn't offer an escrow service at all, so if you see an ad for a vehicle that suggests using the company to hold your cash, steer clear. You should also report the ad or any other sites boasting similar Edmunds-backed deals straight to the companies that host them. As always, if you think you've been taken advantage of, contact your bank as quickly as possible to try to stop the transaction.

[Source: Edmunds]


Show full PR text
Edmunds.com Shuts Down Fraudulent Web Site; Warns Online Car Shoppers of Ongoing Scams

SANTA MONICA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-

Edmunds.com, the premier online resource for automotive information, is currently working with authorities, web hosts and banks to put an end to a scam that victimizes online car-shoppers.
"Sellers are not the ones who need the protection that an escrow service offers. As a safeguard, the buyer should always choose the escrow service"

"If you see a classified ad that references an Edmunds escrow service, please report it immediately to the Web site hosting the ad," encourages Edmunds.com Senior Vice President and General Counsel Kenneth Levin. "Edmunds.com does not have an escrow service, but criminals are fraudulently using our site's name, logo and likeness to induce car buyers to send them the payment for the car -- falsely assuring them that the money will be safely held until the vehicle is delivered."

Edmunds.com was successful in shutting down the fraudulent Web sites www.edmundspayment.com, and www.edmundsautopayment.com, but is concerned that other such sites may emerge.

"Sellers are not the ones who need the protection that an escrow service offers. As a safeguard, the buyer should always choose the escrow service," asserts Edmunds.com Senior Consumer Advice Editor Philip Reed who provides additional tips in his article Online Car-Buying Fraud at http://www.edmunds.com/advice/buying/articles/115910/article.html.

People who believe that they were victimized by a scam should contact their bank as soon as possible to seek assistance canceling the transaction. Fraudulent used car advertisements should be reported directly to the Web sites that hosted them. AutoTrader.com, Cars.com and eBay Motors each provide guidance on the subject. Edmunds.com links to their pages from its online car-buying fraud resource page at http://www.edmunds.com/industry-car-news/.