Fraud and Identity Theft Prevention at Instrumart
Fraud and identity theft are unfortunate byproducts of e-commerce. The very things that make e-commerce convenient for both customers and merchants, also make it easy for criminals to pretend they are someone they are not in order to deceive and steal.
As a merchant, we must be extra diligent to protect both our customers and our hard-earned reputation. We are up to that challenge. Over that last few years we have become pretty good at identifying fraudulent orders that have been placed with us. Whenever an order fails to pass muster, we call to verify that order. This simple and effective means has saved us a lot of headaches and protected quite a few people from fraud. No one has ever felt inconvenienced that we called.
Though we can use our own experience to root out fraud when orders are placed with us, we need to rely on other businesses to recognize and alert us when someone places fraudulent orders using our name. To help other vendors, we thought it would be helpful to both shine a bit of light on fraudsters we have caught trying to impersonate us and to outline how we attempt to minimize fraud.
The following individuals have purported to be Instrumart employees in order to place fraudulent orders:
Nicholas Aloi (2019)
firstname.lastname@example.org (with "@dr" at the end of Instrumart)
Shaun Arkinstall (2017)
email@example.com (with an "s" at the end of Instrumart)
Chris Wilkison (2017)
firstname.lastname@example.org (with an "s" at the end of Instrumart)
Paul Owen (2017)
ap@LNSTRUMART.com (with a lower-case "L" substituted for the "I")
Jose Cahill (2017)
jcahill@LNSTRUMART.com (with a lower-case "L" substituted for the "I")
David Johnson (2017)
Ryan Johnson (2013)
Steve Nelson (2014)
Tom Lundborg (2014)
Shipping addresses known to be fraudulent:
c/o Instrumart Inc
117 Palmyra Dr
Vista, CA 92083
503 Commerce Park Drive, Suite E
Marietta, GA 30060
11895 Wayne Rd, Suite 104
Romulus, MI 48174
- Fraudsters are adept at making fake domain names and email addresses look legitimate. For example:
- A lowercase "L" used to mimic an uppercase "I".
- We have also seen examples where "RN" is used to mimic an "M" (e.g. instrurnart vs instrumart).
- "inc" added to the end of "Instrumart".
- We have also seen "www" as part of the URL without the dot (as in wwwinstrumart.com) to confuse people.
- Although they used Vermont's "802" area code, the phone numbers used are not Instrumart's.
To combat fraud, Instrumart has standardized some of our practices. For example:
- All Instrumart orders originate and ship to South Burlington, Vermont. We do not have warehouses in any other location.
- Instrumart will never drop ship to a freight forwarder.
- We ask that vendors call and confirm all drop ship addresses.
- We encourage all vendors to carefully check the phone numbers and domain name on our emails.
Please call us at (802) 863-0085 and verify an order with Instrumart, if:
- If a purchase order seems suspicious in any way.
- If it originates from an Instrumart employee that you have never heard of before.
- If it is a drop ship order.
- If we are requesting credit terms for an unusually large amount. (> $3,500.00)
- If we are requesting expedited shipping.
- If we are requesting a large quantity (> 10) of one or two products, especially items that are particularly easy to resell such as computer equipment, security equipment cameras, hard drives, etc.
What can we all do to prevent fraud? We have compiled a number of tips we call Fraud 101 to help identify fraudulent orders. We encourage others to use this as a starting point for their own fraud prevention efforts.
If you have any questions about a suspected fraudulent transaction with Instrumart please call Linda Lane or our credit department at (802) 863-0085 or email email@example.com.