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Safety First when Placing an Ad Online

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Communication with a Prospective Buyer

When you post an ad, you're in control, so only communicate the best way you feel comfortable. Only meet in person once you’ve established that the prospective buyer’s interest is valid. Be wary of buyers who are out-of-area, as they’re fraudulent most of the time. Make it clear what form of payment you accept before meeting in person.

The Transaction

Never agree to meet at your house, an unfamiliar place, secluded/isolated place, or by yourself. Set up a time to meet at a public place, during daylight hours, and have a friend accompany you when meeting the prospective buyer. As stated before, don’t accept any other form of payment that what you’re asking for. If the payment form has changed from your previous discussions, let them know you will not be continuing with the deal. When meeting in public, ask for proof of identity, that way you know who you’re dealing with in the event of a problem. If they used a car to get to your meeting spot, take note of their vehicle make, model and license plate, only to be used in the event that there is trouble with the transaction.

Creating your ad

Do your best to not post any more personal information than needed. You don’t need to post your home address, personal name, marital status or where you work in the ad description. Just post relevant details about the item or service you’re placing an ad for.

Don’t leak info in your pictures

Pictures are important to an ad, but jeopardizing your safety and identity are not. When taking a picture of an item, place it in front of a blank canvas, such as an empty wall, garage or entry way. Your house can give away a lot about you and your lifestyle that may attract unwanted attention out of your classified ad. Don’t have anything in the background of the picture such as family photos, license plates, house numbers, furniture, personal items

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