Online shoppers duped by fake websites amid lockdown

Sub-standard products delivered by fraudulent websites


APP May 28, 2021

ISLAMABAD:

Since Covid has hit the country with prolonged lockdown and closures of markets and businesses during the spike of the contagious disease, online shopping has emerged as a remedy to shoppers facing difficulties.

Unlike the global practice of quality and genuineness of the online service providers and shopping portals, a number of fake e-shopping websites have become rampant, particularly in the twin cities, looting the masses.

Kiran Khan, a beautician, told that due to increasing demand of beauty products and supplements used in her field, she ordered some products online to use in her beauty salon. As she could not manage to go out for shopping during lockdown and closure of all non-essential items, she also placed orders for few dresses online that were seemingly of good quality.

“But when I received the order, I was shocked to discover the low quality stuff. I tried to return the products to the providers but it was too late as the website had shut down,” she added.

Haroon Ali, a student of matricualtion, said for the first time in his life he tried online shopping to buy a birthday gift for his younger brother. He said he had ordered a few t-shirts for his brother but the fraudulent website ruined his surprise as the order received was of such poor quality wherein the shirts were too fade and inconsistent in size for a teenage boy.

He further mentioned that the people who run the fake business were also demanding high prices for such substandard products. He advised that before going for online shopping, people should check the authenticity of the site otherwise one would get easily robbed.

Summiya Khan, a student of culinary arts, said she had the worst experience of online shopping during complete lockdown as she ordered curtains but received a curtain containing patches of torn pairs of jeans inside. She regretted to lose a handsome amount of money in that deal.

Khansa Khan, a teacher at a private school shared her experience in this regard. She said that local authentic brands were delivering fair and good quality of materials but among them there were many fake websites in the name of international brands looting innocent customers venturing into online shopping.

”I try not to order items that would be shipped from any far off country as it is not easy to claim a refund in case of a fraud,” she warned.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 28th, 2021.

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