Avoid Scams When Buying & Selling Online

There are so many ways to buy and sell as an individual online. Through platforms like Facebook Marketplace, Craig’s List, and Poshmark, you can sell your unwanted possessions or purchase products from other individuals. While the premise seems simple, there are rules to follow and red flags to be aware of that can help keep you safe from scams online.

Red Flags

  • Overpayments – Fraudsters are known for paying too much for an item to cover shipping. Once you have mailed the item, the check/money order is returned unpaid, leaving you responsible for the balance, and without your merchandise.
  • Large purchase and buyer lives out of state – Be wary of someone out of Colorado or your direct area that wants to buy something simple like a sofa or bed. Think about the situation; does it make sense that someone in another state wants to buy your used sofa?
  • Too much information – Buyers do not need your online banking login information or PayPal logins to process a payment. Do not share your financial information with anyone online.

Tips

  • Meeting for sale – Meet with the individual away from your home in a safe public place. If they are trying to scam you, chances are they won’t show up.
  • Tell someone about the sale – Be sure to tell someone close to you where and when you are meeting someone to sell merchandise.
  • Cash is king – Cash is the most secure payment method. Don’t accept electronic payment, check, or money orders, there is always a chance the items will be returned unpaid.
  • Checks – If you do decide to accept a check for payment, ensure it clears before providing the merchandise.
  • Profile review – Before you buy merchandise from someone on Facebook Marketplace look at their profile. Try to ensure they are who they say they are, and it isn’t a phony profile.
  • Report – If you suspect a buyer or selling on Facebook Marketplace of being a scammer, report them to Facebook. Help ensure they cannot scam others.

Keeping an eye out for red flags while you browse all the available merchandise on these platforms will help keep you and your financial information secure.

Concerned your Elevations Credit Union account may be at risk?  E-mail our fraud team at fraudmanagement@elevationscu.com. Concerned your Elevations Credit or Debit card may be compromised, please report it as soon as possible. To report fraud or dispute a transaction, please call 888.346.4412.

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