Unfortunately, it's become clear that we need to make a statement on something troubling.
In short, please beware of scammers and imposters.
Unfortunately, some of our loyal customers and followers have been scammed by imposters or disingenuous sellers. But we hope this information can help resolve this by informing the public on trends we see happening across the internet - not just with GhostStop. Please be mindful and protect yourself.
We are quite aware of fraudulent Facebook pages that look like us and have copied much of our content to look like GhostStop. They copy profile photos, posts and other content to make them seem legitimate.
They'll post, comment or send direct messages things like "YOU WON!" or "in stock now."
Fake Giveaways, "You Win!"
We used to do giveaways quite often. We stopped that entirely to help protect our customers and followers. Every time we would ever post a giveaway, tons of people on our page would receive messages claiming they won when they didn't. The scammer would ask for credit card info or personal information to send the 'gift.' Unfortunately, some fell for this and that is horrible.
These bad apples have ruined giveaways.
We've tried countless times to get Facebook to remove these bad actors. Sometimes it works. But, generally speaking, they do nothing about it. Even if they did, these scammers would just create a new account and start over.
Our only social media links are at the bottom of this page and every page of our web site. In short, ours have a rather large following. FB is over 120,000 and Instagram over 10,000 as of writing this letter. Many scammer pages will be a personal profile with few or zero following. At the risk of sounding boastful in our following, that is quick and easy way to check for validity.
We've tried to get 'verified' to no avail. But we'll keep trying. Even then, theoretically, a scammer could just pay for that blue checkmark now. It's weird.
Scammers will also message our followers with messages stating either they won something or offering products for a discount. In short, we won't do that.
We recently had a customer state that they received a Facebook message from (what looked like) us saying "I know (product) is out of stock. But we'll be happy to make you one." They paid and got scammed.
Again, we would not do that. We have a notification system on our web site to get notified when a product is back in stock.
There are a ton of coupon sites. Some of them claim to have a coupon for GhostStop. We don't have any coupons for a number of reasons. Those coupon code web sites use links to gather your information and install tracking code on your browser. In short, just clicking on them can be detrimental to your security.
Beyond that, we hear quite often "My coupon didn't work. Coupon Site X said I would get 20% off and you charged me in full." That's because that coupon never existed.
Temu, Ebay, Amazon and Other 3rd Party Sellers
We got a call just this morning from someone who purchased a Gift Card for GhostStop off of Temu. Again, that gift card never existed. Honestly, this situation is what triggered me to write this article. I'm infuriated this person was taken advantage of.
If you're not familiar, this is a China-based discount store with unusually low prices - for a reason. Since I'm on that subject, I notice they just spent over $21 million in ads during last night's Superbowl. Speculations aside, that's a ridiculous amount of money for a 'startup' business.
There are a ton of Ebay listings for our products listed for 2-4 times what they cost on our web site. Like many of the other situations above, we simply have no control over an Ebay listing for products that someone purchased (or did not purchase). I suppose, this is not really a scam if they do, in fact, have and ship the product. Just be sure to check their reviews/ratings.
What can you do?
In short, only purchase directly from GhostStop or an authorized distributor. There are very few because we are are a small industry. We'll be happy to tell you if they are authorized or not.
For social media imposters, one thing you can do is to report them as a scam.
If you're not sure whether a page or message you received is us or not, feel free to contact us. We'll be happy to help look into it for your protection.
Honestly, this entire article pertains to a LOT of businesses out there - small businesses, in particular. While large companies don't necessarily feel a dent in their business, they don't do much to resolve it. However, it is extremely harmful to small businesses.
We are very sorry for anyone confused by these bad actors and we wish there was more that we could do. But we are at the mercy of Facebook and other respective sites that have little controls in place. We have received many calls and messages from concerned customers letting us know of the fraud, and we are grateful to everyone who has been helping safeguard everyone. Just remember that if an offer looks too good to be true, it probably is.
We are GhostStop and we are always here to help!
Shawn and the GhostStop Crew