Action Fraud received over 350 reports in 2021 about scam websites selling e-scooters.
Victims have reported buying e-scooters online only for the e-scooter to not be delivered. By this point, they’re unable to contact the company as the website they made the purchase from has been closed down by its owners. Victims have reported losing over £145,000 to this type of online shopping fraud.
Action Fraud has also received reports of individual sellers offering e-scooters via online marketplaces and social media platforms and failing to deliver them once payment has been made.
We would like to remind the public that whilst the sale of e-scooters is legal, private e-scooters cannot be used in public places or on public roads. They should only be used on private land with the landowner’s permission. Those who disregard the law could face fines, seizure of their e-scooter, and points on their driving licence.
What you need to do
- When it's time to pay for your items, use a credit card if you have one. Most major credit card providers protect online purchases. You can also use online payment providers such as PayPal.
- If you’re unsure about the legitimacy of a product listing, arrange to meet the seller in person to inspect the item yourself. We recommend that you meet during the day in a busy, public location like a coffee shop.
- Be cautious if a seller asks you for details that are not required for your purchase, such as your mother’s maiden name or the name of your primary school.
- If you have visited a website you think is trying to scam you, report it to the National Cyber Security Centre: Report a suspicious website - NCSC.GOV.UK
- If you've lost money to an online shopping scam, tell your bank and report it as a crime to Action Fraud (for England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or Police Scotland (for Scotland).