New Scamadviser Survey Find 28% of Consumers Would Consider Buying a Coronavirus Vaccine Online

75% of the survey participants have bought a fake product last year. 57% did so unwittingly. A large group of consumers is willing to buy a coronavirus vaccine online, making them extra vulnerable towards scammers.

Every year, Scamadviser analyzes the willingness of consumers to buy fake and counterfeit products online. This year, 1,000+ consumers participated in the study from across the world. Also, the willingness of consumers to buy coronavirus vaccines only was researched.

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While all income groups, educational categories, age levels, and continents are represented. Most consumers (65%) consider themselves capable of identifying fakes. This is especially the case for clothing, accessories, and electronics. Only 10% admit they are unable to identify fakes. 40% of consumers doubt their ability to recognize fake medicines and toys while 24% say they have trouble with all categories.

57% of the consumers have bought a fake product in the past unknowingly or doubting the originality of the product. 18% admit to knowingly having bought fakes. Clothing, electronics, and accessories are the most purchased fake products. Remarkably, websites (39%) are by far the most popular channel to buy counterfeits. This channel is followed by online marketplaces (28%).

Consumers buy fakes primarily as they believe that there will be no significant difference in quality (17%). The lower price (15%) and the feeling that the real brand is overpriced (11%) are also named.

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Participants are aware that counterfeits support crime and human exploitation. What, however, would keep consumers the most from buying a counterfeit is the concern about the quality of the product (42%) and the belief that buying fakes online is not safe, as their (financial) data may be misused (37%) or the product not delivered (31%).

Regarding the fight against counterfeits, consumers think the lead should be taken by consumer protection agencies (52%) and not by international authorities such as Europol/Interpol (23%) and the EU/UN (21%).

As an additional research question, Scamadviser this year asked if the respondent would buy a coronavirus vaccine online. 64% disagreed that they would purchase it online. However, 28% stated they would buy the vaccine online, especially if the authenticity can be guaranteed (25%) or the product is sold by an official source (28%). This leaves the door open to scammers selling either fake or illegally procured COVID vaccines.

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