Booksellers Advised to Watch for Fraudulent Online Orders

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This year, the American Booksellers Association has seen a rise in fraudulent orders being placed on bookstore websites. As booksellers continue to offer e-commerce shopping options through the holiday sales season, ABA cautions stores to watch for signs indicating a potential fraudulent order. Here are some tips to follow:

  • Read ABA’s fraud report, which lists email addresses from which fraudulent orders have been received.
  • For IndieCommerce/IndieLite sites, check each order to see if ABA has added an admin comment warning of fraud. In some (but not all) cases, we have been able to add these warnings before an order has been completed.
  • Check the IP address used to place the order for risk assessment using Scamalytics and IPQualityScore. It is especially important to check if the IP address shows a different geographical location from the billing or shipping location, or shows no location.  
  • Pay attention to different ship to/bill to addresses, in particular those that are the same except for ZIP Code.
  • Pay attention to email addresses that have no connection to any of the billing or shipping data in the order.
  • Get a phone number for the customer on all orders. If this customer is not known to you, check to see how long they have been a customer as well as their order history. For IndieCommerce/IndieLite sites, do this by clicking on the customer number link in the customer info box.
  • Call the customer and the recipient of suspicious orders; the recipient might not be aware of any fraud and may help confirm if the order is fraudulent.
  • Check the order to see if the credit card authorization had address mismatches or declines before being approved.
  • Report all suspicious activity to the IndieCommerce team so we can track fraudulent activity.