The Volkswagen Transporter has been dubbed a “fraudsters’ favourite”, after being found to dominate scam listings by Action Scam, This Is Money has reported.
The group, which helps victims recover money, says vans carrying the same number plates appear repeatedly on eBay and Facebook Marketplace.
Fraud expert Jack Buster, who runs Action Scam said: “Some of the photos being used on these adverts are often eight or nine years’ old, they are a scammer’s goldmine.
“eBay and Facebook Marketplace are head and shoulders above the others for the sheer volume of fraudulent vehicle adverts.
“These platforms need to shut down the adverts faster.”
Volkswagen Transporter fraud is now so common that a dedicated Facebook page with 3,500 members has been set up to track scam listings.
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Victims are encouraged to send a deposit by bank transfer before picking up the vehicle in person.
The seller then either goes cold and ignores any further messages, or provides a fake address for collection in order to give their ruse the appearance of legitimacy.
Last year, cases of online vehicle scams referred to Action Fraud, the reporting body, were up 21 per cent on the level recorded in 2019.
Elliott Boddy, who runs Travelin‑Lite, a business that sells Transporter parts, said: “It’s often people new to the Volkswagen scene who fall victim to these scams.
“People buying their first one are most vulnerable.
“Tell-tale signs are the vans being listed too cheap for the model being sold.
“In recent years, I have frequently seen the same vans used in adverts.”
Prospective buyers are urged to never buy anything they haven’t seen in person.