Red flags you must know to avoid scams

Sadly, most visitors to our site have already fallen victim to a scam and come here to post their experience. But if you are lucky enough to find this site before doing business with an overseas supplier, please keep these tips in mind and please pass them on to other buyers who may be in danger.

Sick of losing money to scams? If you are also sick and tired of the scams, join us in exposing the bad suppliers!
Sick of losing money to scams? If you are also sick and tired of the scams, join us in exposing the bad suppliers!

Red flags that your suppliers may be a scam:

Range of products too large. Manufacturers and trading companies generally specialize in certain categories. If the website sells toothbrushes and car parts…something is fishy.


The product offered by the seller is not officially for sale by the brand holder. For example, scam artists offer to sell Apple products “direct from China” which have not even gone on sale yet via the legit channels.


The phone number on the website is Chinese cell phone, the emails are free Hotmail and Gmail and no formal address given.If an address is given, Google it. Is it a residential building rather than office or factory area?


The bank account listed is a private account not a corporate account. This is a HUGE red flag!


Website is the same design as other well know scams. Not sure what a scam website looks like? Just do a key word search for “scam” at’s search engine, and you’ll get plenty of examples of website designs the scam artists use.


If you think the seller may be a scam, ask about the following:

  • Can you have a 3rd party inspect the goods before it ships and before any payment is made?
  • Can they put you in touch with some other clients to get some references?

If they fight these items, you should find a new seller and avoid the scam!


Related services:

Loss Prevention and Safe Sourcing

Learn how to prevent losses when sourcing in China




What other red flags should buyers be looking for?

2 comments on “Red flags you must know to avoid scams

  1. actually, i recall seeing some hair scams on the list last year. regardless, be careful.

    IMHO, GS is better than the other online directories in terms of verifying the companies listed. As i understand it, the major directories ask the factories to pay different prices in exchange for different “stars”. So yes, a verified supplier is better than a non-verified supplier, but the reality is
    a) suppliers pay for their stars. So they have to be really bad in order to get kicked off the directory.
    b) a great supplier today can become a bad supplier overnight. So the “star” rank is no promise, it’s just one tool in the supplier selections process.
    c) the directory has no legal obligation to cover your loses if a supplier on their directory does a bad job.

  2. i am trying to source a supplier for human and blend hair products.
    i could not help but notice that there were no hair suppliers mentioned in any of the scammers notices or on the black list.
    my question is does Global Sources hold some responsibility to the buyers. Their site has these suppliers as verified suppliers.
    Does verified mean they paid GS to be advertised on the Global Sources site or does Global Sources actually conduct some verification process.

    i am confused.


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