On March 19th, KX News told you about a scam website offering seized and used cars for sale at unusually low prices.
At the time, the Mandan Police Department issued a news release warning the public about the scam, noting the “company” calling itself Dakota Prairie Used & Seized LLC used a Mandan address that did not exist for that business. Nor was the business registered with the state.
Today, we can report that the scam site, usv-preloved.com, is no longer up on the internet, and the owners of the site have apparently scrambled to remove all traces of their online presence, including basic domain name information.
Also, the Better Busines Bureau of North Dakota and Minnesota has opened an investigation into the business.
“In response to consumer inquiries, BBB of Minnesota and North Dakota is currently investigating Dakota Prairie Used & Seized Vehicles (https://usv-preloved.com/), as there is no currently licensed auto dealer by that name in the state of North Dakota,’ the BBB notes on its website. “If you have interacted with ‘Dakota Prairie Used & Seized Vehicles,” BBB strongly urges you not to wire money to this entity, or provide them with any sort of personal/financial information. We also ask that you contact BBB of Minnesota and North Dakota (800-646-6222) to share any information that may help BBB advise other consumers about this entity.”
Due to the quick response of the Mandan Police and the BBB, a phony online operation has been unmasked before it could con money out of North Dakotans (there have been no reports at this point of someone locally losing money to the scam).
Keep in mind, however, that such scams tend to re-appear under different names and scenarios.
As a rule, when it comes to buying used vehicles online, if the price is too low to be true, it probably is. Thoroughly check out such sites with local authorities. Check Better Business Bureau sites for the state in which the online company supposedly operates. Do some online research on the company name and web address