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The FTC has been hearing about a new scam targeting people who are selling their cars online. They’re getting calls or texts from people who claim to be interested in buying the car – but first want to see a car history report. They ask the seller to get the report from a specific website, where the seller needs to enter some information and pay about $20 by credit card for the report. The seller then sends it to the supposed buyer but never hears back. Weird, huh?


Well, it gets weirder. When the car sellers go to one of these websites, they’re automatically redirected to sites ending in ‘.vin’ – which seems like it might be related to your car’s vehicle identification number or VIN, right? Scammers hope you’ll think that, but no. In this case, .vin is a relatively new website “domain” – like .com or .org – that groups can apply to use. This domain was intended to be used for sites that relate to wine, since “vin” is the French word for wine, but others are not prevented from using it. So yes, that’s a clever take on .vin for cars, yes, but you still might want to think twice if anyone asks you to do car-related business on a site ending in .vin.


So, if you are selling a car online and someone asks you to get a car history report from a specific site, ask why and think twice. You may have no way of knowing who operates the site, especially if it’s one you’ve never heard of. It might be a ruse to get your personal information, including your credit card account number. It also could be a way for companies called “lead generators” to get information, which they sell to third parties for advertising and marketing purposes.


Your best bet: play it safe. Go to for information on vehicle history reports, recall notices, and how to learn whether a car has been declared salvage. For example, the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS) operates, which lists NMVTIS-approved providers of vehicle history reports. Not all vehicle history reports are available through the NMVTIS website. Reports from other providers sometimes have additional information, like accident and repair history.


Whether you’re familiar with a company or not, it’s always helpful to see what other people are saying online. Simply enter the name of the company, and words like “complaint,” “review,” “rating,” or “scam.”


To get more information like this, sign up for the FTC's Consumer Information Updates.

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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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February 06, 2021
I have my car advertised for sale - I got text message from a guy really interested we texted back and forth several times - but he wanted a car report and ask me use the link “VIN Swift” site so that he could see the car report - looked legitimate so I paid $26 for the report. When I saw the report I knew it was a scam the number he called from was 1 313 4415 a Detroit number. If you are selling your car do NOT pay for a car-report tell the buyer to pay for it and you can refund them if they purchase the vehicle.
February 06, 2021
If you list your car on craigslist, watch out for vehicle report scam. They ask you for VR report, and ask you to get a report from , site looks legit, but if you click around, you'll realize a lot of the links points back to the same page, and payment method is paypal only. Total scam!
Jim in Atown
February 06, 2021
Got a call form Jordan Tom 107370271-5617 wanting to buy our disabled van cash but wanted a car report from Looked it up before using it another scammer.
February 07, 2021
Just posted car on Craigslist and got a text requesting that I get a report from I replied NO after seeing it was a scam. Then blocked this scammers number. Thank you so much.
February 09, 2021
Stay clear of A history report on a vehicle contained multiple false reports. The report claimed that the vehicle had a number of issues in 2017 at 50K miles. The car doesn't even have 50K miles and never had the issues listed. The scam is that they sell the service but make up the content of the report.
February 16, 2021
This just happened to me today with a car I have for sale on Craigslist. I heard from someone claiming to need my email address so they could have their father communicate with me about the car. They probably did this so that the communication is not through Craigslist relay system. After lots of feigned interest in the car he asked me to click on a link to get a title report. Here is the scam message below: "I'm interested and ready to come , see , test and make a deal for it . I need something rather soon,but i would like to make sure you/vehicle and all is ok and legit. For that i need a vehicle Title report ,don`t send an old one or get something you find,get me the report from globaltitlereport. / is what my loan officer asked for and needs.I'd just feel safer about getting a vehicle with an official report because I've had friends and family get shafted before."
March 28, 2021
Just listed an auto. Scammer’s number 770-917-2167
March 29, 2021
I got the exact same message some of these people were getting in 2019 but using the Coronavirus "social distancing restrictions" as their excuse for not coming to see the car in person. So, you're afraid of a virus that's 99.97% survivable, but you're NOT afraid to send someone a cashier's check in the mail that you've never met, for a car you've never seen? Highly fishy!!!
Don't use your…
April 20, 2021
It's a scam. I communicated with 2 different phone numbers (5039086837, 8334245623) through text only. They didn't pick up my call but the last text that I received was identical from both numbers. (no , btw Its the papers your able to pull up as the owner on, sorry I forgot to ask for your name? Im Johnny..)
June 04, 2021
+1 (947)222-1745. Tried to get me today. Ugh.
June 07, 2021
This was very helpful and save me 50 bucks
car owner
July 18, 2021
just happened to me july 2021 they refused my carfax and tried to bully me into getting some paperwork from a differnt site I said no couple hours later tried a again using different phone number
August 03, 2021
But how do I keep my vehicle information private from "extended warranty" providers and anyone but the officials who actually need it for legal reasons? Since I purchased my car I have been inundated by these though I have NEVER contacted any of these companies.
August 14, 2021
Thank you. I was ready to pay on wheels history because of this one guy that really needed a report from them. It was a litttle suspicious Good thing I read up on it... :D
August 23, 2021
Got this text today. Asking me about my car. They told me to go to which is clearly a scam. I wanted to share the website in case others also get this so they know its a scam.
September 15, 2021
I encountered this scam while selling a vehicle. He told me his name, (Cody) set up an appointment, then offhandedly requested I do the report at Thankfully his grammar was off putting and the website poorly designed, so I recognized it as a scam before learning about it. So annoying!
September 22, 2021
I got contacted using SMS by a guy who calls himself "Smith". His number is 913-374-8227. He wanted me to get a report from The site has been registered for less than 3 weeks so I knew it was a scam, plus he has a US number and I'm in Canada.
J Fan
September 22, 2021
Got scammed last night form a Lee Jhoson for 38 and change from Autolabs So stupid i knew i should of followed my gut but i went out on a whim and got burnt. Beware of a 1-343-301-4534. I know i would love to meet up with these scammers,
October 19, 2021

In reply to by J Fan

Just got the same name from the same number asking for the same thing. Glad I checked here first!