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Father’s Day: Avoiding fakes and staying safe when you buy

With Father’s Day celebrated worldwide this Sunday, the final flurry of sales is a tempting chance for last-minute shoppers to grab a belated bargain.

However, whether treating your dad to the perfect shaving kit, his favourite tipple or even an online voucher, it’s vital to exercise caution and stay safe from counterfeiters. Covering the risks of substandard fakes through to scam deals, take a look at our consumer guide and avoid being caught out this year.

Old Favourites

While the variety of gift ideas continues to grow every Father’s Day, a few tried and tested favourites remain year after year. Covering a few of these below, we encourage you to consider what you buy as you read below:

Counterfeit Electric Razors

Top electric razors command a premium, meaning the temptation for a lower price ‘dupe’ can be high even on a special occasion. However, the risk of buying a fake can go beyond a false economy – from electric shock to poor quality and dangerous designs. While some major retailers provide handy guides of their own when shopping, this Father’s Day we recommend watching out for:

  • Unexpectedly low price (I.E: ‘too good to be true’. This can be on so-called approved ‘outlet’ stores which are in fact clone websites, or via sellers claiming to hold surplus stock.)
  • Suspect images or description (If the images are blurry or cropped for example, or the description contains errors, these could indicate something’s amiss.)
  • Little-known source (Where does it come from – and who by? Many big brands have a list of approved stockists, meaning if you’ve bought elsewhere there’s a higher chance it’s a counterfeit.)
  • Low product quality (Once it’s arrived, how does it perform? If it falls apart after a couple of uses or causes irritation, it’s always worth flagging as a potential fake.)
  • Loose or no packaging (Genuine products are usually appropriately packaged, so if your order arrives without it this could indicate it’s not the real thing.)
  • Incompatibility (Doesn’t fit? Similar to poor product quality, this suggests the product isn’t genuine.)

Dangerous Drinks

While counterfeit alcohol may seem an unlikely find, sadly infringers will leave no product alone in the pursuit of profit – no matter how dangerous. This includes anything from light drinks through to spirits, making vigilance essential as you shop this Father’s Day.

Although major retailers are good bets when buying, venture elsewhere and you may risk a substandard fake. Take heed of what’s on offer and where it originates. From dodgy DIY kits to slightly ‘off’ branded bottles, remember: the risk of dangerous drinks is never worth the so-called saving.

Dubious Vouchers

With offers for Father’s Day experiences and discounts proving an increasingly popular option, many brands and companies issue vouchers or hold contests, with the reward to be redeemed at a later day. Sadly, such schemes have also proven an attractive avenue for scammers, benefitting from consumer trust.

Indeed, just this past week, Guinness have warned customers of a fake Father’s Day competition promoted in their name and conducted via WhatsApp. Offering lucky winners the chance of a golden ticket, it encouraged people to up their chances by sharing the link to friends and family – with victims unwittingly promoting this scam to their nearest and dearest.

So how to avoid being caught out? Firstly, watch out for where something is being hosted.

If hosted on the likes of WhatsApp for example like the Guinness scam, it is more likely not to be associated with any legitimate business.

In fact, scammers will often try to switch from major marketplaces or payment providers to off-grid platforms where possible, such as moving a sale from Instagram or eBay to more private avenues to ‘save’ the customer money. Sadly however, this is often an easy way to avoid oversight and built-it consumer protections, ensuring you don’t get a refund if all goes wrong.

Secondly, if you’re looking to buy your father a voucher or deal, make sure you aren’t caught out by an overly tempting offer.

As our Airline Scam blog highlights, many scammers rely on time-based ‘Order now!’ incentives to prompt an impulse sale and avoid closer scrutiny. However enticing this may seem, whether this Father’s Day or beyond, remember to take a second before clicking order and ask yourself this: is it too good to be true? While a missed offer may not be fun, being scammed is always worse.

Why it matters

From saving yourself heartache and stress to keeping your loved ones safe, buying counterfeits is simply not a risk worth taking. What’s more, although the cost of living has made saving money tempting for us all, the hidden cost is much higher. So this Father’s Day, make sure to treat your loved one with the genuine article.

At SnapDragon we help fight counterfeiters every day. For more information, tips or brand concerns, feel free to check out our website or contact us directly.


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