Staying safe and secure online can be difficult. Whenever there is money involved, there is an increased chance that you will run into scammers. Here's how to avoid them.
How to Stay Safe and Secure Buying/Selling Online
While the Internet has brought not end of good to our world, all too many people have found ways to use it for malicious purposes, and scam those of us who use it properly. With the prominence of websites like Ebay, Craigslist, Offerup, and so on, many people have either bought or sold items online. Doing so can put some extra cash in your pocket or help you get that item you really wanted, but knowing these tips will make your experience feel much more secure, and will lessen the chance of you being scammed.
Most sites that let people buy and sell goods have an option to either leave a review of the seller or read them. Always check to see what feedback people have left on the person’s account if you’re planning on buying something. This is usually a good indicator as to whether or not they can be trusted.
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In many cases, if you’re looking to buy a highly sought after item, whether it be a pair of sneakers of a piece of jewelry, it is important to be aware that the world of fake merchandise is an industry that brings in about a trillion US Dollars per year. Ask the person you’re buying from to send a picture of a tag or receipt or any other kind of proof that the item is legitimate.
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This goes for both buyers and sellers. If you plan on meeting somebody in person to either buy or sell an item, make sure you pick a meeting location that is public. It’s rare, but we all know about a story of somebody being harmed by someone from Craigslist. You can even bring a friend with you!
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Scammers are very good at abusing payment systems to work in their favor. Make sure you use a trusted and secure payment system. PayPal is usually a good way to do a payment for goods and services due to their buyer and seller protection programs. Make sure to check that a real email is sent from the service you use, and check your account for a new balance. Scammers sometimes forge emails from payment services faking money transfers.