uShip recently contributed to a study of online auto buying led by Dr. David C. Wyld, management professor at Southeastern Louisiana University and a scholar in e-commerce. The study concludes that the rapid growth of online car sales has made some consumers susceptible to Internet fraud — and that newer tools like uShip, Escrow.com and WeGoLook make auto buying far safer and easier.
Wyld’s study points out that online and out-of-state car buying has skyrocketed in recent years on sites like eBay Motors, Cars.com, and a handful of less-moderated sites like Craigslist. In the first half of 2013, 3 out of every 4 buyers on eBay Motors was out-of-state, while Cars.com received more than 24 million visits per month.
Highlights from the Study
- Over the past year, 205,000 cars and light trucks were listed on uShip (an increase of 67% over last year). Vehicles were transported an average of 1,250 miles.
- Scams involving buying and selling cars are one of the most prevalent types of fraud on Craigslist.
- Fraudsters most often prey on online auto buyers that are willing to wire payment without verifying a vehicle’s existence or fully understanding how the vehicle will be transported.
- Sites like Escrow.com, Cars.com, and uShip.com help to establish the credibility of the person on the “other side” of the equation.
- Kelley Blue Book’s number one tip for avoiding online vehicle fraud is “Execute the transaction using a reputable escrow service that you’ve researched on your own.”
Ultimately, Dr. Wyld concludes that “the best advice for online auto buyers is to use trusted, experienced partner services ’on demand’ like uShip and Escrow.com to facilitate vehicle sale/purchases.”