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Chanel for 300 UAH? Online scammers become active in Ukraine before the holidays: how to avoid purchasing counterfeits

Maria ShevchukLife
Chanel for 300 UAH? Online scammers become active in Ukraine before the holidays: how to avoid purchasing counterfeits. Source: Photo by Freepik

The time of holidays and, consequently, gift buying is approaching. And the war has not canceled this tradition! On the contrary, when there is so much negativity around, sirens are blaring several times a day, and the news feed contains hundreds of reports of the destruction of cities and villages, you just need to pull yourself out of depression and do something good and pleasant - "from your past life." For example, buy your favorite perfume for yourself or a loved one.

Today, we are almost constantly surfing the internet, following the news, and often come across advertisements for "superb deals from the world's leading brands." A smartphone with an 80% discount, or an elite perfume for almost nothing. But does anyone ever think about what explains such an attractive price and what pitfalls may be on the way for those who dream of finding Chanel for 300 hryvnias?

It's no secret that online fraudsters have been operating in Ukraine for a long time and shamelessly, and have recently become very active. Unfortunately, luxury perfumes and cosmetics are one of their favorite topics. The principle is very simple: lure a buyer with a low price for a branded product and sell them a "pig in a poke" that has nothing to do with the brand.

Chanel for 300 UAH? Online scammers become active in Ukraine before the holidays: how to avoid purchasing counterfeits

How not to get caught by scammers? Here are some tips from experts at the country's largest perfume and cosmetics chain BROCARD:

The first factor that should alert you is an unreasonably low price. Elite perfumes are elite because they know their worth. Too much work, talent, and money for the purchase of quality ingredients, investments in advertising, and marketing have been invested in them. Justifying a low price with a sale due to warehouse liquidation, store closure, sale of confiscated goods, etc. should not impress you. Believe me, these are all outright lies.

The only thing that can be sold cheaply is fakes - suspicious mixtures bottled somewhere in a basement on Mala Arnautska Street (remember how many reports there have been about "exposing" underground workshops this year alone). Or it could be contraband brought into the country by someone unknown and via an unknown route (think of the traffic jams at customs), and certainly without complying with the strict requirements of the brand owners regarding the temperature and humidity conditions during transportation and storage.

Chanel for 300 UAH? Online scammers become active in Ukraine before the holidays: how to avoid purchasing counterfeits

The second factor is the website where the product is sold. Watch where you go when you follow the link. If, for example, the advertisement contains the name BROCARD or the ad is designed in the corporate style of the company, then you should be directed to the brocard.ua website. If the address in the browser bar does not match the address in the link, close it immediately before you get a virus.

It is also worth considering if the site was registered on a domain such as com.ua, kiev.ua, in.ua, cc, biz, Tild, WIX, etc., or in another country (.us, .to, .ca). There are cases when the website address consists of a meaningless set of words, numbers, and punctuation marks. Or if there is a mistake in the company name: brocarb.ua, brokard.ua, etc. Remember: the website address of a reputable company consists of its name and the prefix ".ua".

The third factor: website design. "Crooked design," artisanal layout, typos, and misspellings are sure signs of a one-day website. And if the site is full of extremely positive customer reviews, this is a serious reason to doubt its reliability. After all, our mentality is simply "sewn in" to scold everything - whether you are Dior or Giorgio Armani.

Chanel for 300 UAH? Online scammers become active in Ukraine before the holidays: how to avoid purchasing counterfeits

A separate topic is buying perfumes "second-hand." Recently, even at food fairs in Kyiv and other cities, counters with allegedly branded perfumes have appeared. There is only one comment here: see above. Where and who mixed the contents of these bottles, under what conditions was it stored, and how did it end up on this very counter between bags of potatoes and sauerkraut? And even if you consider yourself a "pro" and are confident that you can identify any counterfeit "by eye," we have to disappoint you: even experienced professionals are sometimes unable to do so.

Therefore, the easiest, most obvious, and safest way out is to buy cosmetics and perfumes in stores of reputable chains or on their branded websites. It's your choice to do it offline or online. And by the way, there are often good discounts there too!

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