Safety Tips When Using Online Sites

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Doraville Police Department, along with other law-enforcement agencies, have developed some proactive safety tips for when meeting someone selling items on the Internet.

Safety Tips When Using Online Sites Online Safety

With the recent news coverage of the recent tragedy involving an Internet transaction, we would like to inform you of the possible dangers associated with them and steps to take to minimize your risk or exposure.

When buying, selling or trading using online websites, BE SAFETY CONSCIOUS!

Your safety and wellbeing far outweigh any possible "deal" you may have discovered.

Know that there are predators out there waiting for an unsuspecting and unprepared victim. If the person is legitimate, they will understand and won't mind your need for caution.

Below is information one might want to consider when conducting a transaction online or on any internet site.

 1) If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!

 2) Generally, the higher price the item being purchased, the greater the risk involving the transaction.

 3) As a general rule, do not accept cash for items priced over $100.00.

 4) For those higher priced items, conduct the transfer in person and at a banking facility. (A banking professional can verify if/when funds have been successfully transferred to one’s account).

 5) If available, use an anonymous email address to communicate with the seller/buyer. (This will hopefully prevent personal information from being disclosed).

 6) Selling or buying through an online website is a business transaction. Therefore, stick to the facts of the business transaction and leave out any personal information.

 7) ALWAYS meet in a public place to conduct business. Police stations, banks, or government facilities (during normal business hours) are all possible locations. The Doraville police department is located at 3750 Park Ave. Doraville Ga 30340. The parking lot is well lit and we welcome the use of it.

 8) Conduct any transaction during the day and not at night.

 9) Do not go alone! However, if that is the only way to conduct business, always inform a family member or friend when and where you intend on meeting the involved party. (Additionally, provide that family member or friend with any pertinent information they may need to give to authorities should something happen to you).

10) If a comfort level is reached with the seller/buyer, ask them for some form of identification that will validate who they are. (Follow that up by getting a telephone number for them, and immediately call it while they are in your presence). Note: This should be done at one of the recommended locations where the interaction between the buyer/seller can be monitored or observed.

11) Have a cell phone on your person (and ready accessible) during the entire transaction.

12) If the person asks for a picture of the item you are selling, take off the “geo tagging” information before sending it to them.

13) Only provide information related to the item you are buying/selling.

AVOID:

1) Conducting the business transaction alone! (Ask a trusted person to accompany you).

2) A seller who refuses to meet face to face to conduct business.

3) Conducting any business inside your home or on your property.

4) Sharing any personal information such as:

     a. Social Security numbers

     b. Bank Routing numbers

     c. Credit Card numbers

     d. Computer “Username” or “Passwords”

     e. Buyers who offer to pay with a cashier/certified check or money order

     f.  Wiring of any funds, especially out of the country, via phone or online. (Beware of the request to use Western Union; many “scammers” use this service.)