Bo­gus busi­ness rings alarm bell

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Opinion -

with Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion Com­mis­sioner Anne Driscoll CON­SUMER Pro­tec­tion is warn­ing con­sumers and the publi­ca­tions in­dus­try not to deal with Pa­cific Mo­bile Phones – a bo­gus busi­ness of­fer­ing smart phones, tablets and cam­eras at “un­beat­able prices”.

Since June 2015, con­sumers and advertising or pub­lish­ing pro­fes­sion­als have re­ported con­cerns to WA ScamNet about Pa­cific Mo­bile Phones. Among them was a Perth stu­dent who re­sponded to an ad­ver­tise­ment in a brochure that she re­ceived in her let­ter­box and paid $700 for an iPhone 6 that never ar­rived.

Our in­ves­ti­ga­tion has shown ob­vi­ous signs of fraud­sters in ac­tion.

Pa­cific Mo­bile Phones is a busi­ness name reg­is­tered in New South Wales but Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion has spo­ken with the di­rec­tor who ad­vised that it is no longer an ac­tive busi­ness and he has sat­is­fied us that re­cent ac­tiv­ity is noth­ing to do with him.

Ad­ver­tise­ments, such as one shown here, of­fer­ing mo­bile phones and other elec­tronic de­vices for sale have ap­peared in mag­a­zines and news­pa­pers in Western Aus­tralia. Pub­lish­ing and dis­tri­bu­tion com­pa­nies Aus­tralia-wide have been asked to pro­duce and dis­sem­i­nate thou­sands of fly­ers and glossy brochures.

We un­der­stand stolen credit cards were used to pay in each in­stance and that com­mu­ni­ca­tion was via email.

At­tempts to con­tact who­ever is be­hind the present Pa­cific Mo­bile Phones have un­cov­ered sev­eral other ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties in the way the busi­ness is run in­clud­ing:

No true phys­i­cal premises de­spite the use of NSW and UK ad­dresses.

Phone num­bers rerouted over­seas and ques­tion­able email ad­dresses and email com­mu­ni­ca­tion.

Seek­ing pay ment by wire trans­fer (MoneyGram).

False claims of af­fil­i­a­tion with a known Queens­land mo­bile phone com­pany.

Any­one who has paid money to Pa­cific Mo­bile Phones and is wait­ing for their pur­chase should con­tact WA ScamNet on 1300 30 40 54 or email con­sumer@comm erce.wa.gov.au.

Any­one who sees ad­ver­tise­ments for Pa­cific Mo­bile Phones in mag­a­zines, news­pa­pers or via a brochure in their let­ter­box should not re­spond and re­port the ad­ver­tise­ment to the pub­lisher.

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