IT resellers and independent retailers are being targeted by fraudsters.
Distributor Target Components says that as suppliers have become sophisticated at detecting and preventing fraud over the years, unscrupulous traders are instead turning their attention to independent retailers.
"This has happened very recently with one of our customers," said Target MD Paul Cubbage on the ShopTalk blog, which also lists tips and advice for resellers to protect themselves.
"It follows the classic pattern: they were approached by a business for some small orders and subsequently asked if they could provide a drop ship service. Business was built up over a six-month period to around £20,000 per month, primarily sales of processors, and then the fraudsters disappeared.
"This is a substantial business-threatening amount for the retailer, but in this instance the fraudsters have been tracked down to a residential address, and at time of writing there is still some optimism that they may recover the amounts owed. Others have been less fortunate."
The news comes as dealer group Synaxon calls for a body to police the tech industry, while others say the channel needs better educating and self-regulation.
Target also advises resellers to stop and evaluate before accepting a much larger order from a business they've only been dealing with for a relatively short time, checking the trading history of the business and asking it for trade references.
The Target Open Day 2013 takes place next Friday, September 13th. HP is the latest addition to the list of exhibitors.
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