Sony is cracking down on PS5 pre-orders in India. While the PS5 does not have a release date yet for the country (let alone pre-order details) that hasn’t stopped enterprising retailers from trying to make a quick buck off unsuspecting customers. Stores in Delhi, Chandigarh, Chennai, and Mumbai have been taking cash upfront from eager PlayStation fans with the promise of a PS5 as and when it lands in India complete with bill and warranty. The Mako Reactor has verified that Sony has instructed these offending outlets to refund customers their money and stop any communication regarding PS5 India pre-orders or release date. In some cases it has even threatened to cut off access to its consoles and games as punishment for misleading customers.

When asked if these retailers were allowed to take cash upfront for the PS5 to begin with, a Sony India spokesperson issued us the following response over email: “The answer is no.”

The reasons for this are simple: there is no PS5 India release date or pre-order plans or even allocation for retailers at this juncture (though some websites would like you to believe otherwise). So taking money from customers is out of the question. More so when Sony has communicated that its still to announce when the PS5 will launch in India at the time it revealed PS5 pricing.

Suffice to say, if you have paid upfront for a PS5 from a store committing that you’ll get one when it launches complete with bill and warranty, you should demand a refund. These pre-orders aren’t official and chances are, the store you order from may not get stock to begin with.

With retail having a rough year due to the ongoing pandemic, it’s no surprise that some would resort to underhanded means like this to keep a consistent cash flow. And this isn’t the first time this has happened either. Back in June, The Mako Reactor was tipped off by several readers that brick and mortar stores across Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Delhi have been taking pre-orders for the PS5 console.

“At this point in time, pre-orders are neither encouraged nor allowed from Sony,” confirmed a spokesperson for Sony India to The Mako Reactor via email at the time.

In October a similar scenario played out what with Sony Centers — Sony’s own franchised stores — from taking pre-orders with a cash deposit as well as Amazon committing to pre-orders going live during its Great Indian Festival Sale. Both were debunked.

Now with Sony taking concrete steps to prevent predatory practices from retailers by demanding they refund customers and threatening supply, it’s safe to say that if you have paid any amount upfront for a PS5 in India, you may want to ask for a refund as soon as possible.

As of now the PS5 will be available worldwide from November 12 onwards. India does not have a release date or pre-order details as of the publishing of this story.