Check the price of the product
Is the price too good to be true? Chances are you are dealing with a replica: in other words, a fake. To find out whether the price of the product is plausible, it pays to compare prices:
Check the brand or supplier’s website to see what the recommended retail price of the product is.
Check what reputable department stores or electronics shops charge for the product.
Use a comparison site and find out what the product costs at other online shops. For example kieskeurig.nl or tweakers.net for electronic products.
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Pay attention to the product packaging
Luxury products are always in luxury packaging with a logo, not simple plastic. Bottles of liquor are rarely offered by the box. In Mozambique, there have been fatal incidents due to fake alcohol bought online. The illicitly distilled liquor was not sold by the bottle, but by the box.
Check reviews about the seller or online shop
Search the internet for reviews about the seller or online shop before placing an order:
Google on the name of the seller or shop in combination with the keyword reviews, experience or complaint.
Check Internet forums to see if there are complaints about the seller. For example, use our platform Klachtenkompas.nl for this.
Buying something on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk? Use ReviewMeta.com to filter out unreliable reviews.
Read more about how reviews are created and what to look out for when reading them.
Check whether a shop is affiliated with a trustmark
A trustmark can say something about a shop’s service. Mentioning a trustmark logo on the selling party’s site is not enough. Check on the trustmark’s website whether the shop is actually affiliated.
Check whether the online shop is affiliated with a trustmark.
Check on the trustmark’s website whether the shop is actually affiliated.
Pay extra attention to online marketplaces, auction sites or foreign webshops
Be wary if you want to make a purchase from a supplier on an online marketplace or auction sites. Suppliers (almost) never sell their products through such websites, but through official sales outlets.
At foreign webshops, especially Chinese webshops, you can buy convincing imitations of well-known brands for little money. Think shoes, clothes, watches and smartphones. It is illegal to import fake products. If customs intercepts them, they will be confiscated and destroyed.
Recognise real from fake
It is sometimes difficult to distinguish fake from real. Make sure you are well aware of a product’s authenticity features before placing an order. To do this, do research, for example:
through the manufacturer’s website;
via iphone.co.uk: how to recognise a fake iPhone.
Do you unintentionally receive a fake product? Also report it to stopnamaak.nu.
Read the advertisement carefully
Look carefully at the description of the product. Does it say it is a branded product? Or does it say it is a replica of a branded product? Sometimes the brand is mentioned, e.g. ‘suitable for Apple’. But it does not say that it is the original.
Be suspicious if it only includes a picture of the product but no description.
Know the law: sales contract
If you buy a product, you enter into a purchase agreement with the seller. The seller must deliver you the product he promised. Couldn’t you have known that the product was a fake? Or did the seller say it was a branded product when it is not? Then you can sue the seller.
The seller must provide a good solution. He must deliver what you agreed with him. Can’t or won’t? Then you are entitled to ‘your money back’.
Order from a reputable party
It is obvious, but do you want to be 100% sure that it is a branded product? Then order only from the supplier or a reputable party. Just make sure you are dealing with the official website and not a fake web shop.
If you do receive a fake product, take photos of it and contact the seller. They will have to refund you.
Does the seller refuse to refund you? You can reverse the payment if you have used a credit card or PayPal. This is because these offer buyer protection.
Report the incident to the police against the seller.
Report the incident to React (formerly Stichting Namaakproducten). They have some 22 million counterfeit items removed from websites and platforms every year.
Post a product review to alert others.
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