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Fake ecommerce network stole $50 million from online shoppers

Did you know you should have at least 4 or 5 premium content in each ad? Many advertisers now understand this principle, in turn creating panic in the industry due to concerns that their content may not engage viewers.

Ecommerce is a jungle. You can’t survive without

Good thing we don’t have the same problem—because we always strive to bring you the freshest pieces of information every day.

BLACK MARKET

Just like hidden traps waiting to catch the unwary, online shopping scams lurk in plain sight. The Register reported how a sneaky crime ring called BogusBazaar managed to steal $50 million from over 850,000 people across Europe, America, and Australia!

🕵️‍♂️ The setup

The group runs over 75,000 fake websites, 22,500 of which are still active. Here’s how they operate:

  • The main BogusBazaar team does all the software and server work:
    • A single BogusBazaar server, typically residing in the U.S. and using Cloudflare, can host 200 to 500 fake online shops
    • The sites use WordPress with WooCommerce, but they also previously used Zen Cart and OpenCart. 
    • Payment pages are separate from the actual storefronts, so if one is shut down, another can replace it easily. They’re skilled at automating new site creation, often reusing expired domains with good Google reputation.
  • BogusBazaar affiliates run the fake shops. They pay the core team for software and server access in a "fraud-as-a-service" model. Most affiliates are in China, and target victims are mainly in the U.S., UK, France, Australia, and other Western countries.

🔍 How does the scam work?

  • The scam has two parts. First is credit card harvesting, where fake gateways collect data without charging. Second is fake selling, where they actually take money from the victims.
  • Victims are lured in by fake websites offering non-existent or counterfeit goods at discounted rates.
  • Scammers collect credit card details through spoofed payment services like PayPal and Stripe.
  • Some victims receive nothing after placing orders, while others receive counterfeit items.

⚠️ The warning signs are clear: if a deal seems too good to be true—it probably is. So, remind your buyers to watch out for red flags to protect them from falling prey to such fraudulent schemes.

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*Source: Walmart first-party data, 2021-22

**Conditions apply.

BITES OF THE WEEK

TRENDING TOPIC

10 takeaways from Amazon’s 2023 Small Business Empowerment Report

Amazon is walking the talk of its commitment to making the marketplace a thriving space for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). The recently released Small Business Empowerment Report for 2023 sheds light on this dedication. 

📌 Here are the 10 key takeaways from the report:

  • Over 10,000 independent sellers hit the $1 million mark in sales on Amazon last year.
  • Hundreds of millions of shoppers flocked to small and medium-sized businesses on the platform. Amazon's features, like the Small Business Search filter, have helped simplify the hunt for hidden gems.
  • U.S.-based sellers shipped over 330 million goodies to 130 countries. That’s thanks to Amazon's resources equip sellers with everything they need to conquer the global market. 🔋
  • Independent sellers on Amazon provided more than 1.8 million jobs across the U.S.
  • Over 100,000 sellers tapped into Amazon's AI arsenal to level up their listings.
  • Brand owners saw sales jump by more than 22% year-over-year. 📈
  • California took the lead in jobs supported by Amazon-related businesses.
  • Rural sellers saw a 60% increase in sales from the previous year.
  • Maine topped the charts for the fastest-growing number of sellers on Amazon.
  • Health & Personal Care, Beauty, Home, Grocery, and Apparel emerged as the top categories of online shopping.

💡 In a nutshell

Amazon's commitment to small businesses isn't just good business—it's a promise to empower dreams. It just shows that from bustling cities to remote towns, Amazon's got your back with cutting-edge tech, global reach, and a whole lot of heart.

TACTIC TALKS

How to use LinkedIn Groups to build your marketing network

With the rise of AI and automation technologies, marketers seem to ignore one crucial marketing component—networking. Hence, many miss the chance to build a professional support system. 🏗️

But it’s not too late to connect with your peers. eCommerce Fastlane said you could kickstart your networking journey with LinkedIn.

How?

Through LinkedIn Groups!

These platforms allow you to meet and discuss anything under the sun with industry professionals. And the good news? Joining one requires only 5 simple steps:

  • Find the right group, ideally one that offers insights aligned with your business type and goals. 
  • Optimize your LinkedIn profile. Make sure it looks professional to establish a good reputation and brand image. If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, take this as a sign to create one now.
  • Engage with the community. Don’t be a silent watcher (that’s creepy). Share your thoughts—somebody may find them useful. 🧠
  • Send connection requests. Well, how else can you expand your network if you don’t?
  • Gather insights from experts, other sellers, and even people from related fields. The more knowledge, the merrier.

✍️ Bonus step: Share content

And make sure they’re valuable and accurate. You can also mix in some self-promotion to enhance brand awareness. Who knows, you might be the next talk of LinkedIn town.

Author : SellerBites
Faith began working on SellerBites in 2021, a weekly newsletter that provides sellers with the latest news and updates in FBA. With first-hand experience in managing various seller and vendor accounts, she understands what sellers face on this platform. Her background led to the conception of SellerBites, which main goal is to help people become better, more informed entrepreneurs in the Amazon marketplace.
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