There are people out there who would take advantage of our tendency to believe everybody is as fair and honest as we would be in an online transaction.
Weíve had some recent examples of people registering for the purpose of scamming others by ďsellingĒ parts that donít exist.
A few have included the added twist of hijacking user IDs by including a link that tricks you into believing you are logging into the Forum and, thus, recording for the scammer your user ID and password. Then, they sell bogus stuff using your user ID to people who think it must be legitimate because you have tenure and a good reputation on the site.
To avoid problems, consider these suggestions:
- Donít follow links sent by people you donít know.
- Donít give anybody your password. There is no legitimate reason for anybody to ask for it.
- Don't post your email address in threads. If you do, scammers can harvest the address and bypass the site to contact you directly to avoid sanctions or oversight.
- Be wary of deals that sound too good to be true.
- Exercise caution in dealing with newly registered users with no track record.
- Ask a lot of questions. Ambiguous answers should raise a red flag.
- Ask for pictures of the parts being sold. If the item/s donít exist, you wonít get a picture or youíll get a generic image stolen from the Internet that probably doesnít match what you need.
- If at all possible, inspect the items in person. If thatís not possible, ask if there is another Forum user in the area that can inspect them for you.
- Check references. Who on the Forum has the seller done business with in the past? Did they have a good experience?
- Search the Transactions Feedback section for complaints.
- Pay for any item using PayPal and/or a credit card so youíll have some recourse on a charge-back if a problem arises. Note, however, if you designate the PayPal payment to "friends and family" and they determine it was for goods and services, no protection is afforded.
- Run if someone insists you pay by money order or some other means that doesnít allow you to recover your money if you donít get the item you were trying to purchase.
If you are contacted by someone you believe is suspicious, report it to a moderator/administrator.