When you find yourself as the victim of a scam, it can be a very infuriating experience. The internet has made the occurrence far too common. You give away your hard-earned money with the understanding that you will get something valuable in return, only to find that you’ve been left with nothing more than a bad taste in your mouth.
The first thing you’ll probably find yourself wondering is how to get your money back. It won’t be easy and nothing is guaranteed, but it’s worth fighting for. Let’s look at best tips for getting your money back from online scams.
Report the Scam
The first thing you’ll want to do is report what happened to the proper channels. If you’re wondering how to report a scam, it’s actually a simple process.
First, do an internet search for agencies that handle internet scams. After that, notify as many of them as possible. Unfortunately, not all of them are going to be helpful, but the more different agencies you talk to, the better your chances will be to get the results you’re looking for.
It’s also a good idea to look for agencies that regulate the industry in which you made the transaction. If for instance, you purchased some food over the internet, and you were lied to about the ingredients, you should contact the FDA to report the online scam.
Mediation will be a good option in most cases. While agencies that handle scams may be helpful, they aren’t likely to get your money back for you. Luckily, there are several mediation programs that try to help businesses and consumers come to an agreement with one another.
The Better Business Bureau is the most well-known of these types of programs, but there are many more that are available to help you. Do an internet search to see if there are any locally-based programs that can help you get your money back.
Request a Chargeback
If you made the purchase with a credit card, it may be possible to request a chargeback, but you need to understand the credit card refund process.
Because too many consumers have cried wolf in the past, there are certain things the bank will check while attempting to validate your chargeback. For example, you can file a chargeback if you paid for an item but never received it. However, if you are just angry that the item you purchased was poor quality – even though you knew it was fake, counterfeit, or a knock-off – your chargeback won’t be successful.
On a similar note, you can’t claim fraud if you actually did authorize the transaction!
If you’ve paid cash, you’re going to have a very hard time getting your money back. You may need to speak with a lawyer to see what your options are.
It’s also going to be difficult if you sent the payment through a wire service, but many of the companies that provide that type of service also offer advice on how to avoid these types of situations. It’s a good idea to see what they have to say.
Don’t Lay Down
The important thing is not to lay down and let the scammer walk all over you. You won’t always be able to get your money back, but you’ll increase your chances if you report the scam to the correct authorities, enlist mediation programs, request a chargeback and seek advice.
Julia Reed helps protect consumers against online scams at eConsumerServices. She works tirelessly to spread the word about internet fraud, sharing her knowledge in order to help those from all walks of life stay safe.