Staying safe on Auto Trader
We have been made aware of a text message asking customers to visit www.instant-autotrader.com. This is not a genuine company and has no affiliation with Auto Trader. We are currently working on having this site closed down.
Please be aware that Auto Trader do not use text messaging to contact our private customers and do not buy vehicles, so consider any similar messages as fraudulent.
If you have already paid a deposit to the bogus company please report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.
Buy and sell with confidence
Spotted an issue we should know about? Let us know
- 1We advertise cars on our websiteBut we don’t own, buy or sell any of the vehicles advertised on our website.
- 3Shipping servicesWe don’t offer any kind of shipping service for vehicles. Never send money for a vehicle you haven’t seen.
- 2We don’t offer payment servicesAuto Trader don’t provide or recommend any payment services or get involved in transactions between buyers and sellers.
- 4Emails and TextsWe’ll keep in touch by email and text message, but we will never ask for your personal or financial information via these.
Other places to go for advice
You'll find lots of tips and advice to help you buy or sell a car in this section. However, there are many other organisations and industry bodies that can also provide help:
- Get Safe Online offers help and advice to avoid scams and stay safe on the internet.
- Citizens Advice can provide advice on your consumer rights.
- Action Fraud is the UK's national online crime reporting centre.
- The DVLA maintains registers of drivers and vehicles.
- GOV.UK has official advice about MOT and emissions tests, insurance and more.
Who's your buyer?
If you're contacted by a company promising to buy your car or claiming to have buyers ready and waiting, beware.
These are usually scams - some even use the Auto Trader name to appear legitimate.What to look for
No matter whether you're buying or selling, a smooth payment is the best way to end a successful transaction.
Read here to understand the main payment options available and how to take the risk out of making or receiving a payment.
Whatever method of payment you choose, never send money for a vehicle you haven't seen.Payment advice
Short for "SMS phishing", SMiShing is a security attack in which the user is tricked into downloading some type of malware onto their phone or mobile device via a text message.
Read more about how to protect yourself from SMiShing.SMiShing advice
Just like every part of the internet, the world of buying and selling cars can attract fraudsters.
So you don't get taken in read this information and learn how to stay safe online, how to spot a scam and the warning signs to look out for.Common scams
Checking a vehicle
Once you've found a car you like, it's important you spend some time checking it over.
Make sure you know what to check and where you can get further information.Vehicle advice
What you need to know about buying or selling a car in Insurance Category A, B, C or D.Insurance categories