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Short and long firm fraud

Such firms deal with services or products where they prefer those that are not recorded and cannot be tracked by the authorities. For example, they may deal in items like collectables, luxury items or electricals. 

Such fraud leads to financial loss as the victim may not have legitimate goods, or you may supply goods to bogus firms that do not follow rules or standards. Moreover, such organisations do not act in an accountable manner.

Multiple short firms operate only for a few months and may become undetectable after some time. It may not try to build a relationship or create a credit history. Such firms often have fake accounts of a limited company at the approved registries and do not indulge in daily activities. 

Furthermore, they use the credits to get goods delivered to third-party addresses. Sometimes, they work through multiple occupancy trades where goods are offered for cash, and illegitimate funds may be used to buy the supplies. Once they sell the goods and get the money, they disappear. 

In the long firm, the criminals place multiple small orders to the wholesalers, paying the seller. However, once they establish a relationship and build trust, they place several large orders but disappear after getting them.

How To Spot It?

  • If you are a wholesaler who gets a lot of small orders from scammers who place larger orders but disappear without paying.

  • If you supply items to people with no credit history or those who do not have a reliable way of doing business. 

  • The seller or buyer may assume they lost a small amount but may face serious financial losses and a bad reputation in the market later. 

How To Protect Yourself?

  • Evaluate all the orders carefully before placing and check the trading history of the suppliers or the business you are dealing with.

  • Get the trade references and check the authenticity of the referee. The criminal may sometimes provide references about each other.

  • Examine the accounts filed by the firm and see if a genuine accountant prepares the reports.

  • Review the credit history of the people who run the business and monitor the firms' databases at authorised websites to see if those representing the firm are bankrupt or disqualified to act as directors. 

  • Verify if the goods are delivered to the person or address mentioned in the order requests. Please do not allow your supplies to be cross-loaded by unidentifiable people waiting for them at some unidentified location. 

  • Always order through reputable sites and compare all the terms and conditions.

  • Always try to find out the evidence of the location of the business and verify the IDs of the executives or board members.

Date Published: Sep 18, 2023

Types of fraud

A-Z of fraud

To help understand which fraud you've been affected by, we've categorised them into an alphabetical list.

What is fraud and cyber crime?

Cybercrimes can be of two types. First, it can be cyber dependent, where the fraudsters use online devices to convince the victim to accept their offers.

Advance fee fraud

If you are trying to get a loan for a house or a car, they ask to meet the provider to get the financing arrangement and pay the finder's fee in advance.

Corporate fraud

Corporate frauds can be complicated, committed either by the firm or an individual. Nevertheless, it mostly involves cheating where the employee or the firm.

Individual fraud

There are many types of individual frauds related to advance fees, investments, insurance brokers, bogus tradespeople, Ponzi schemes, pension liberation.

Online fraud

Hence the number of cases of online fraud is increasing each year, and most such cases include – account takeover, direct frauds, or scams related domain names.

Identity fraud and identity theft

The criminal uses the stolen identity of another person living or deceased to conduct unlawful activities like obtaining goods or services in another's name.

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