If you’re buying an Apple product from a third party, please follow Rule No .1: Make sure you’re actually getting what you paid for. Unfortunately for one Australian woman looking to purchase two new iPhones online, she waited too long to check that her two newly purchased iPhone boxes actually contained iPhones.
According to the Herald Sun, a 21-year-old woman from Brisbane posted an ad on a classifieds site called Gumtree, looking for a couple of iPhones, and “not long” after the ad was posted, a woman called her and agreed in principle to meet and exchange money for the two iPhones.
All seemed to go well when the two women met at a McDonald’s in Brisbane’s Sunnybank suburb, with the buyer handing over 1,500 Australian dollars (around $1,336 U.S.), and the seller supplying two seemingly untouched iPhones still in their boxes.
The buyer clearly forgot Rule No. 1 about buying Apple products from third parties. She didn’t open the boxes until she got home, because only then did she discover that the iPhone boxes didn’t contain the Apple products she had purchased, but rather actual apples -- one in each box.
Niki Hennessy, a spokeswoman for Gumtree, said the company is “continually improving processes and user education to make Gumtree the safest possible platform for buying and selling.” Jess Hopkin, a senior constable from the Upper Mount Gravatt Crime Prevention Unit, said it’s important for victims of scams to report all matters directly to police.
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“Be smart about what you buy [online],” Hopkin said. “If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. It’s really just common sense.”
This iPhone scam wasn’t the first; many online buyers have neglected Rule No. 1, including a woman who bought an iPad in a parking lot in Spartansburg, S.C., that turned out to be made of wood. In Britain, a man also bought an iPad in a parking lot for $390, only to find the box filled with potatoes. And of course, there was the Canadian electronic store scam that sold at least 10 customers new iPad boxes filled with slabs of clay. At the end of the day, there’s nothing wrong with buying Apple products from third parties or online, as long as you don’t forget Rule No. 1.