BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - It might be tempting to grab that online deal for that Coach purse or even that Lego set but the danger is that the product you’re looking at could be counterfeit.
It’s easy to fall victim to this as most Americans shop online because it’s convenient. Fake brand-name goods have expanded to major website retailers like Amazon and Walmart.com.
From electronics to makeup to household goods, experts say the odds of buying a fake item becomes higher if you buy from a third-party vendor.
The US Government Accountability Office did an experiment where officials bought and tested products from third-party vendors on five popular online retailers.
They found that 20 out of 47 brand-name products were fake. The products included shoes, travel mugs, makeup, and phone chargers.
So how you avoid buying something fake?
- Research the seller
- Be wary of discounts
- Scan the customer reviews
- Examine the product’s packaging
- Know the hallmarks of the real product
If you think you have purchased a counterfeit product, try following these steps:
- Reach out to the vendor
- Get help from payment companies
- Contact government regulators