What Is the Bait and Switch Scam?
The bait and switch scam is a fraudulent strategy employed by companies or individual sellers who advertise low-priced goods with the intention of substituting them with higher-priced items during the sales process.
The goal is to attract customers with enticing low prices as the “bait” and then deceive or “switch” them into purchasing different goods, often of lower quality or at higher prices than initially advertised.
How Does the Bait and Switch Scam Work?
The scam begins with a company advertising its products at prices significantly lower than the prevailing market rates, luring customers with attractive offers.
Exceptions to the Bait and Switch Scam
It is essential to distinguish between a bait-and-switch scam and legitimate marketing strategies. Accusing a vendor falsely can have serious legal consequences.
While “out of stock” is a critical element of the scam, it is essential to recognize that genuine situations can arise where a product is temporarily unavailable due to high demand.
Penalty for Bait and Switch Advertising
Engaging in bait-and-switch advertising is both unlawful and unethical.
Victims of this scam have the right to report the vendor to the appropriate authorities.
The penalties for bait and switch practices vary depending on the severity of the case, but they can include substantial fines, legal fees, and damages awarded to the victims.