How to Spot Fake Fashion Stores Online
Trends2 Minutes Read

How to Spot Fake Fashion Stores Online

May 20, 2023 Share

Learning all the intricacies of spotting a knockoff as soon as you come across a fake fashion online store.

Love getting your mitts on the latest styles? You’re not alone. The UK’s online clothing market is growing at a rapid pace. Fashion e-commerce revenue leaped from $23.86 billion in 2017 to $44.19 in 2023, according to Statista figures. However, with the rise of social platform shops and cheap clothing retailers, online shopping scams are booming. This type of scam became one of the most reported types of fraud in 2022. It’s easy to get sucked into purchasing from scammers, especially from fake fashion stores online.

Here’s how to spot the red flags. 

Keep your browser padlocked

Look for the padlock icon in the address bar. This will show you that your browser regards the site as safe. It looks at things like having a valid security certificate, cookies policy, and a secure connection. If a site doesn’t have these things, it may be due to the security settings expiring, which can happen. However, it may also signal the site is not legitimate. 

Invest in a virtual private network (VPN)

Install a VPN to ensure your details are always protected. VPNs mask your web traffic and stop bad actors from stealing your data. As such, they can protect you while you’re online shopping, even if you land on a bad site. To stay protected, download a free VPN Chrome extension or an add-on for whichever browser you use. Then, make sure it’s running while you browse.

Check the name for reviews

Always search for the name of a retailer you’re not accustomed to when shopping online. Look for recent reviews and check what other customers think of the shop and its service. If there are poor reviews, go elsewhere. And if there are no reviews at all, consider whether the site is legitimate. The owner may have renamed the store to remove the criticisms of previous customers.

Image courtesy of Charles Deluvio

How’s the design?

Legitimate sites will typically put a lot of time and effort into their branding and site design. That way, they can overcome competitors. If a site has poor design, it may be due to being cobbled together at the last minute by a scammer. As such, pay close attention to the design details.

Is there clear customer service information?

Legitimate sites will usually clearly show their refunds, delivery, and complaints policies. They’ll also provide contact details like email and telephone so customers can easily get in touch. If a site doesn’t have these, ask yourself, could they be hiding something?

Image courtesy of Sincerely Media

Too good to be true?

It’s highly unlikely that Balenciaga coat will be on sale for £40! If the price is so low as to be ridiculous, consider whether the product is in fact a knock off, or even exists in the first place.

Keeping safe online while shopping can be tough, but with the tips above, you should be able to scratch your shopper’s itch in total safety. 

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Author: DDW Insider