Fake iPads warning over Xmas gifts

Apple iPadConsumers are being warned of a "flood" of fake iPads in the run-up to Christmas. Brand protection firm MarkMonitor says it discovered thousands of fake listings on sites generating millions of visits on a single day in July, and the firm says that dodgy dealers will be upping their efforts as the holiday season kicks in. Apple has sold 32 million iPads since the device launched, and scammers want a piece of the action as thoughts turn to Christmas gifts.
MarkMonitor says that during just one day of investigation earlier this year it found 18,000 cloned iPads on sale and a further 5,000 suspected counterfeits or grey market tablet computers. (Grey market sales are legal but unauthorised sales, often referred to as 'under the counter' sales).

The company also identified 15 manufacturers of cloned tablets and 8,000 individual sellers. Some 766 of those individuals were selling bulk quantities of cloned tablets. "It's very important for consumers to understand as they go into the holiday season, there's a very high likelihood there are scammers out there,"said Fred Felman, chief marketing officer of MarkMonitor.

One way scammers reel customers in is by using photographs of the genuine product without actually mentioning the brand in the listing. It's usually the cheap price that attracts bargain hungry buyers, but grey market goods illegally imported from overseas markets can be up to 15% more expensive.

Difference at McDonalds

The general principle that if something seems to be a massive bargain, it probably isn't is a good one to adopt. That maxim will not now be lost on 22-year-old Ashley McDowell from South Carolina. She was approached by two men in a parking lot in McDonalds who said they were selling iPads for $300.

The device in the US retails from $499, so this struck young Ashley as a bargain. But she only had $180 on her. So the nice men agreed to sell for $180. At their car they showed her a real iPad and handed over a FedEx box containing her device.

When Ashley got home, she opened the box to find a piece of wood with the screenshot of a iPad stuck on the front and an Apple logo cut out of the back. A case, of ever there was one, of wood you believe it?
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