Co-funded by
the European Union
European Consumer Centre (ECC) Italy Bolzano office

Consumer's Telegram May 2014

Insert of n. 34 - Editorial office: Centro Europeo Consumatori (European Consumer Centre, Bolzano - Italy)


Online-Purchase of cars

Everything seems to work out perfectly: the second-hand car of his dreams finally found! The seller promises to organise everything; he engages a transport company which receives an advance payment and is going to take care of everything else. Mr Tagliati knows very well that one should be skeptical about on-line shopping. However, the transport company which should receive the advance payment seems to be very reliable, since it has a high standard website. Also payment by bank transfer is a sign of traceability and transparency of the transactions, or so he thinks. But all of a sudden appearances deceive: the advance payment is lost and there is no trace of the car!
You'll find useful tips by the European Consumer's Centre in Bolzano and how to avoid getting involved with such frauds on the website of the ECC.


"Winning" millions of Euros by e-mail

A few days ago the European Consumer Centre (ECC) Bolzano received this good news via e-mail: You have won one million GBP! The advisors of the ECC know this trick already very well: It is a fraud attempt!
Every week the European Consumer Centre has to convince consumers that this message is not a real winning notification and sometimes consumers do not believe the advisors of the ECC. Consumers should necessarily consider that they will not win, if they do not play and that no serious lottery company would inform their winners by e-mail. Moreover, consumers should note that these fake winning notifications are usually written in English with lots of grammar and spelling mistakes and that on the websites of "real" lotteries warnings of such frauds can be found.
Please read on the website of the European Consumer's Centre how the fraud works.


Conference: Threats on the internet

The world wide web continuously offers bargains and boundless possibilities but an increasing amount of users goes hand in hand with an increasing number of offences in the net. In the course of the conference "Threats on the internet" on 7th May 2014 in Bolzano – organised by the Office for Audio-Visual Media of the Culture Department of the Province of South Tyrol in cooperation with the local Postal Police and the European Consumer Centre – the advisors of ECC Bolzano want to draw attention to threats on the internet and how to defend oneself from them.

Case of the month

An Italian student is looking for a second-hand laptop and finds an interesting offer from a private seller on the internet. He gets in contact with the seller and they soon come to an agreement: The student pays 650,00 Euro via Paypal, an online payment service with its European headquarter in Luxembourg. The seller sends the customer a code in order to follow the route of the parcel. Unfortunately, the student notices that something goes wrong: The parcel is sent to Catanzaro instead to Bolzano. The young consumer who is an experienced on-line buyer first gets in contact with the seller but the problem is not solved. He activates the buyers protection service offered by the payment service but unexpectedly his claim does not get the reply he was hoping for: as the seller is able to prove that he sent the laptop by postal service, the consumer's complaint is deemed unfounded. However, the student does not give up and contacts the European Consumer Centre (ECC) Italy in Bolzano which shares the case with ECC Luxembourg. The ECC in Luxembourg gets in contact with the company and pointing out that the parcel was sent to a city more than 1000 kilometres away from the actual place of destination. After that Paypal revokes its decision and credits an amount of 650,00 Euro to the consumer.