March 8 , 2022
6 mins read

How To Avoid Online Fraud in Transport Marketplaces

Punit Chotia
Punit Chotia
How To Avoid Online Fraud in Transport Marketplaces
How To Avoid Online Fraud in Transport Marketplaces
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Online fraud is real and has affected many transport businesses in recent years. Scammers are taking advantage of the fact that there has been a high level of vulnerability since the onset of the pandemic. They generally target the busiest industries where they detect a high level of stress in operational management due to minimized staff or tech support.

The rise in scam activities has brought both old and new scams into focus. The best way to deal with online fraud while booking trucking services is to work with reputed names in the industry. Also, it helps to be wary of the standard methods used by scammers to target people and take all the necessary precautionary measures to ensure you don’t glide into those risky areas.

When you want to book a truck the first step is to look for transport services. With hundreds of choices available on the internet and with no tried and tested measure to check the legitimacy of a trucking entity upfront, there is a fair chance that you might end up connecting with an online fraud. If you want to avoid getting scammed, the first step is to research and list out names of the top-rated online truck booking services in India.

Just a handful of trucking booking companies have been around for a while. Most of them enjoy the highest level of trust with their customers. Look for the top brand names in an online marketplace and contact them through their official website. Check if they have a physical office and a landline contact number. Do not book a trucking company because they offer you the lowest price and attractive terms because online fraud companies also do the same. If the offer looks impractical and unviable, steer clear of such trucking companies.

How transportation frauds happen

Load scams

There are a few common tricks that fraudulent transporters try on unsuspecting clients. The load scam is one of them. They impersonate genuine transportation companies, book a load, and ask for advance payment to cover fuel and other over-the-road expenses. Oftentimes, a fake bill is generated as a part of this online fraud process to claim the shipment has been picked up. Once they receive the advance payment, they simply disappear. You will have to start the whole process of looking for a genuine transportation company again, but by then, you would have lost valuable time and substantial amounts of cash as well.

Posing as a driver

This is another online fraud commonly seen in the industry. A fraudster with some inside knowledge of the working schedule of the transportation company and load listed for the day will pose as a driver and contact you. They will request a cash advance for fuel or urgent repair by using access to details.

Short freight online fraud

The driver enters the picture only when the truck is loaded and ready to move in most companies. They are not allowed on the loading dock when the truck door is sealed for securing your load. In some cases, this is where the scam happens. The sealed doors are part of the fraud. Ironically, the lorry driving team cannot supervise the loading or inspect the quantum of the freight, yet they have to sign the papers verifying the load. This fraud is not discovered until delivery. When the freight is unloaded, there is a shortage in the number of items loaded and delivered.

The urgent repair scam

In this type of online fraud with some elements of creativity, the fraudster attempts to convince you that they are a repair shop performing urgent repairs on the truck carrying your consignment. They provide a vehicle number, license plate number, and the driver’s name and ask for immediate payment to release the vehicle and its load. The scammers even mail you a fake invoice to make the whole story compelling in an advanced version of this scam.

Areas where trucking scams are likely to happen

With technology permeating the transportation industry in a big way in recent years, online fraud has also surged. If you are looking online for reliable transportation services, don’t just settle for the first impressive-looking website or lowest price offer you come across. Spend time researching various options available. Look for online reviews and testimonials on independent forums before choosing a reliable name to transport your load.

Payments

Payment is one area where online fraud elements look to infiltrate. When you make an online payment, make sure it is done in the company’s name and not credited to an individual claiming to be the owner or authorized to receive payment on behalf of the company. Insist on an invoice before you release any payment. The invoice must carry all the relevant details of the transaction, including the load description, quantity, truck license and registration details, driver’s name, destination, and expected delivery time. A genuine transport agency will also furnish their GST and other relevant information on the invoice.

Online Booking

If you are using a truck booking app, make sure it is genuine. The online app store always carries reviews of the listed apps. Anyone planning to use the app can run a check and find out what others who have used the service have to say. This is a simple and effective way of knowing if a truck booking app is genuine or a scam. Also, look at the profile, credibility, and reputation of the app developers. Try to find if they are even remotely connected with a scam or an online fraud.

How to locate a genuine and reliable service provider

If you want to use an app for truck booking, choose a reliable and established truck service and transport app. Nowadays, most trucking services have a solid online presence. They have websites and apps to reach out and connect with existing and potential customers. By using the services of an established and proven brand name in the industry, you can quickly mitigate the chances of getting scammed and avoid online fraud.

Booking trucks online – facts you must know

You must know specific facts about booking a truck online to avoid online fraud. As mentioned earlier, always choose a reputed service that has a growing client base and enjoys the trust of the consumers and the industry. A genuine transport service has many owned trucks and certified drivers on its payroll. The top transport companies in India are available 24/7, which means you can book a truck for load anytime and from anywhere conveniently.

Why book loads using an app

The online truck booking process must be simple, quick, and transparent. Look for a service that employs the latest technologies relevant to the industry for an enhanced customer experience. Leading companies guarantee vehicle availability so that customers are not inconvenienced when they urgently book a load. You will always find a truck in the booking marketplace with the top providers. It can save you time and effort.

An important factor to remember while booking a truck or load online is that genuine companies offer their services for free. You won’t have to deal with middlemen or pay commission to agents. If you come across websites or agencies that demand a commission to get you a truck on priority, it could be an online fraud attempt.

Benefits of using a truck booking app

There are many benefits of using a truck booking app for finding a truck for transporting your load. All you have to do is register your company using the requested credentials and directly book a truck. You don’t have to deal with fishy agents or fake brokers anymore. You are also spared the hassle of making long and multiple calls to find genuine and reliable transporters. The app will help you bid securely and transparently, track and monitor loads right through the journey easily, and find out when the load is delivered in real-time.

With an app, you will have access to all the information you need without maintaining a separate document or file for the purpose. Your registered account will have your transportation history complete with all the transaction details.

Conclusion

Technology is powering the Indian transportation industry in a big way. Customers rely more on apps to book trucks for loads with easy access to the web and browsing devices. However, you must follow safe practices to know how online fraud companies use the online marketplace to scam unsuspecting customers. This can help you avoid such situations and enjoy the multitude of benefits that online truck booking facilities offer.

Vahak has emerged as a trusted transport app for companies looking for a reliable online truck or load booking platform. You can download Vahak to book a truck or load for free!

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