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Thread: Trading Security in Classifieds

  1. #1

    Exclamation Trading Security in Classifieds

    Well it would appear we have had a case of deliberate fraud on the site in the classifieds section with a user registering, quickly posting 10 posts and then offering for sale some high value optics at very low prices.

    He attempted to take payment from several people for the same items which presumably don't even exist.

    This is a sad day for the site and although it's closing the stable door after the horse is bolted we'd obviously like to prevent this happening again so if anyone has any suggestions on the following, please chip in!

    1) Currently you need 10 posts before you can start an ad in Classifieds. Is this enough? Should it be more? e.g. 30 posts and must have been a member for 30 days?

    2) Suggestions for spotting a scam e.g.

    • Price too good to be true
    • Reluctant to give details or deal face to face, will only provide free email (hotmail, live, yahoo etc), no telephone number, no ISP or work email
    • Do details match? e.g. Location on site to address or phone code
    • Very recent member, search their posts - are they obviously just trying to bump up their post count or are they genuinely participating in the site
    • Are there pictures of the item, can they provide a serial no., check with manufacturer serial number is genuine/not stolen

    I will compile these into a guide.

    Thoughts and suggestions welcome!

    Last edited by csl; 31-08-2011 at 10:13.

  2. #2
    upping the post before posting in the classifieds would help a bit, as it dont take long to whack up ten post

  3. #3
    I agree that it is useful to screen and make users more involved but dont necessarily agree with increasing post count.
    one of the things that seperate this site from other shooting forums is the integrity of the content.

    That said, anyone who purchases anything online needs to be a bit more aware of the implications.
    I would not send any money to anyone without a full complement of contact details, at the very least a photo of the item and having spoken to them in detail. people can ditch email addresses and they have no link to a person. landline and contract mobiles are bit more concrete as ways to identify or trace someone should it all go wrong.

    Use your bank. they dont take kindly to be used to fund fraud and can trace payment much more accurately than paypal.

    I have bought and sold numerous things here both posted and face to face and am a relatively new member.
    It isn't difficult to spot a fraud but I think the one thing that needs to be on all sales posts is the sale needs to be done on the post.
    it clears up any confusion as to who sent what where and which was received first.
    It also negates two people buying the same object as has just happened.

    hotmail, yahoo and gmail are the biggest email providers so discounting anyone who doesnt provide a work address is harsh

  4. #4
    I think for anyone selling higher value items that is an unknown person will need to be verified in some way perhaps by another member. This is easy enough to do because there are members in every area and people know people. We have guys come on here and post quickly then usually get banned for being tits but it's too easy to hide behind a username.

  5. #5
    With the membership getting so big maybe this is the time for new members to be vouched for by an existing member?
    "He who kills sow with piglets empties the forest of boar" My neighbours dad on new years eve 2011.

  6. #6
    I dont agree, people come on here to learn about stalking.
    if they dont know anyone they cant get on and learn.

    real names, real numbers, real addresses.
    only thing internet fraud relies on is anonymity.

  7. #7
    I think anyone selling anything thing on here should at have their proper names and addresses and a contact no logged with the site staff.

  8. #8
    I think time is more an over-riding factor than post count. Why not have to be a member 3 months to start for sale threads?

    Think location should be compulsory as it is on some other forums if you are selling things - nearest town.

    If an item is high value I ask for a scan/photocopy of some photographic ID. Everyone I have asked has obliged. The other option is to post a cheque and then you have a real address.

    I only have hotmail/gmail/yahoo email accounts so can't give a home or work based one.

    The safest way to pay is PayPal funded by a credit card - you then have 2 ways to get your money back.

  9. #9
    Could I just say that I have bought and sold a few things on this site. Everyone, without fail, that I have dealt with has been a complete pleasure to deal with!

    I think a 3 month wait would probably sort the wheat from the chaff a bit, but there are ways round it, unless you include a post count too. Regular users tend to deal with regular users, or so I have found. I would be wary of anything that appeared to be too good to be true, and anyone selling it too.

    I do not envy you having to sort this out.

    Blindness to suffering is an inherent consequence of natural selection. Nature is neither kind nor cruel but fiercely indifferent.

  10. #10
    What a bugger!

    Could easily have been me - I bought a scope off someone on here (who was a pleasure to deal with I hasten to add!) a couple of weeks ago.

    I use another site which handles a lot of transactions between forum users for another hobby and I've adapted their selling guidelines below - maybe a starting point that could be linked to through a stcky in the Classifieds?

    Guidelines for Safer Trading

    1. Check posting history of the seller by looking at their registered date and clicking on their profile to find older posts. Be wary of those who have no history or who have only just registered.
    2. If dealing with sellers with no history then request a reference from them from someone on the forum who does have a history.
    3. Make sure sellers communicate with you using a landline phone number. This doesn't need to be posted but get it off them before you send money.
    4. If dealing with large payments suggest doing a part-payment as a deposit.
    5. Request that communication goes through their work email address.
    6. Post feedback for successful transactions.
    1. Establish a history on the forums before you sell gear.
    2. Don't send gear without receiving at least a substantial deposit.
    3. Get a landline phone number and check it if trading using deposits.
    4. If dealing with a buyer who has no history, then request a reference from someone on the forum with a history.
    5. Post feedback on successful transactions.

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