Police remind public on being safe while shopping online during festive season

Online purchase scams have been on the rise, increasing from 846 in the first half of 2015 to 995 in the same period this year.
Online purchase scams have been on the rise, increasing from 846 in the first half of 2015 to 995 in the same period this year.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The police on Thursday (Dec 15) shared a chart on their Facebook page reminding the public on how to engage in online shopping safely this festive season.

The chart, posted by Carousell and titled Easy Steps For Safer Carouselling, offers tips for both buyers and sellers.

This includes a tip to meet up for transactions whenever possible, especially for pricier items. The poster also includes this reminder - "Remember: If it's too good to be true, it probably is!"

The police also posted a video on Wednesday (Dec 14) reminding the public to safeguard against online purchase scams.

The reminders come after a 27-year-old man was arrested for his alleged involvement in ZoukOut ticket sale scams. The ZoukOut scams involved discounted tickets to Zouk's annual beach festival sold on online marketplace Carousell.

Victims would pay the seller but not receive the tickets, and the seller would become uncontactable.

The suspect was arrested on Tuesday (Dec 13), and faces a charge of cheating, for which he can be fined and jailed for up to 10 years.

Last month, a 19-year-old woman was arrested for suspected involvement in several cheating cases on the Carousell online marketplace.

Victims had lodged police reports complaining about a seller who failed to deliver the goods after payment was transferred into the bank account specified.

The seller had advertised items such as branded lipsticks and Universal Studios Singapore Halloween Horror Night tickets at low prices.

Online purchase scams have been on the rise, increasing from 846 in the first half of 2015 to 995 in the same period this year, The Straits Times reported in September.