Shopping app Temu has given a message to customers after it found a number of websites and apps impersonating them.
Much like its main rival Shein, Temu customers enjoy an "Aladdin's cave of wonders" as it connects people with a huge variety of sellers, manufacturers and brands from around the world. But the marketplace is seeking the support of its customers in identifying and reporting scam websites and apps that impersonate the e-commerce platform for fraudulent purposes.
In a message to customers a Temu spokesperson said: "With the rising popularity of our products and services, we've noticed the emergence of apps and websites impersonating our brand to cheat our customers. We have taken legal action against these fraudulent entities.
"However, the judicial process and expected delays in addressing the issue with the hosting platforms and cloud services mean the resolution may not be immediate. Therefore, we urge consumers to support our efforts by reporting any such fraudulent activities they encounter."
To address reports about fraudulent Temu websites, suspicious text messages or phone calls, customers are encouraged to file a report with Temu at https://www.temu.com/bgch_report_suspicious.html. Additionally, consumers can file their complaints to the relevant authorities including the National Cyber Security Center (https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/section/about-this-website/report-scam-website) and Action Fraud (https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/).
Temu also gave advice to their customers on common signs to look out for and scams to be aware of. They spoke of the common characteristics and techniques used by scam sites and apps;
Individuals report being contacted by someone claiming to be a courier, who then demands additional shipping fees.
There are cases where a seller, allegedly representing Temu, solicits payments through alternative methods, such as QR codes, e-wallets, or wire transfers.
Consumers have been deceived into making purchases and payments on websites or apps that closely mimic Temu, often accompanied by false notifications of winning a prize.
Unsolicited messages from unrecognized numbers have offered financial services or part-time jobs, requiring the recipient to provide personal details, including Temu account or transaction information.
Reports include receiving calls from unknown numbers that either request personal information verification or offer unsolicited refunds.
Earlier this year the ECHO spoke with Elliot Sandell, Network and Security Architect, VCG Technology Service about the potential risks of shopping with Temu, he said: "There are concerns from US lawmakers around its supply chains but I haven’t seen any specific Cyber Risks directly from the App.
"With regards to digital risk, it’s become increasingly popular due to its referral scheme, and in particular sharing to social media. Users should be very careful about inherently trusting such links on social media as while the links from Temu might not be a risk, there might well be risks more generally from bad links."