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How to stay safe on STClassifieds
While most people have been successful with their transactions on STClassifieds, you are nonetheless advised to stay alert so as to prevent any cases of spam, fraud or abuse. STClassifieds has taken great care in implementing measures to protect our users by screening and approving all ads before they are published according to our advertising policies, however, we are unable to verify the legitimacy of the buyer and seller in the vetting process and users must exercise caution when making payments.
Here are some top safety tips to help you out.
If you're a Buyer:
- Never click on a link found in an unfamiliar email if you are unsure of its origins, especially if the email asks you for personal financial information. A spoof email will usually lead you to a website and attempt to collect your personal information for committing identity theft or other crimes.
- Never provide your financial account numbers, passwords, personal details or other sensitive details to anyone over the Internet.
- Do not trust anyone who claims that STClassifieds can guarantee your purchase or protect your transaction.
- Avoid dealing with sellers touting exported mobile phone sets that are significantly cheaper and do not carry a local warranty.
- Be wary of promises to earn quick money with little effort on your part, some of these common scams include:
You will receive an email asking for your help to take a large amount of money out of a foreign country whereby you will be promised a commission. Eventually you will be asked for financial assistance to take the money out of the country. Once you have paid out the amount, you will not hear from them again.
Brand name spoofing/ phishing
Emails you receive like this may claim to be from STClassifieds, eBay, Paypal or another company. Combined with a sense of urgency, they will typically request that you send money or personal information to them. As it is not STClassifieds' policy to send out such emails, you are likely dealing with fraudsters. Always check for suspicious email addresses and domains that do not look official.
An overseas relative has died and left you a huge inheritance
Often disguised as a bank or lawyer, the scammer will email you to say that a long-lost relative has passed on and left you a huge fortune. They will ask for your personal details, tell you to pay an upfront fee to claim your 'inheritance' or call a phone number (usually starting with 19) where you will be charged for the duration of the call.
A prospective buyer will send you a cheque worth more than the value of the item you are selling and then ask for you to return the extra amount, either directly to them or through a third party eg. payment for shipping. Ultimately, you will find that you have lost your item, the initial cheque amount and the surplus amount to the scammer.
- You are strongly encouraged to meet up with the sellers in person in a safe, public place to see the item before you make any payment.
- Always inspect the item to ensure that it is exactly as it has been described before you complete the transaction. If items are purported to be new, please check for unbroken seals, labels and original packing. Be extra cautious when handling goods from countries like Nigeria, the United Kingdom (UK), Cameroon and India.
If you're a Seller:
- Take precaution when you are dealing with a buyer who wants to pay with a cheque, or pay a portion of the price during the item collection and the rest of the amount after.
- Wait for cheques to be cleared and cash in money orders before sending out your product. You are strongly advised to meet up face-to-face with the buyer to complete the transaction on the spot. Beware of fraudulent Western Union transfers.
- Be prudent when dealing with buyers who request for items to be shipped to countries such as the United Kingdom (UK) and Nigeria.
- Be wary of promises to earn quick money with little effort on your part, some of these common scams or illegal activities include:
"Want to buy mobile phone"
Interested buyers promising quick cash with inflated amounts to buy your used mobile phone may actually be illegal money lenders in disguise.
Reporting scams and frauds
If you see and suspect that an ad on STClassifieds is illegal, defamatory, obscene and fraudulent or otherwise violates our STClassifieds policies, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will take appropriate actions to rectify the issue upon investigation.
If you have been cheated by a fraudulent Ad on the site, or your transaction has gone bad, please contact us. In the event of any fraud or illegal activities, report the incident to your local police.
Reporting abuse / Harassment / Spoof (fake) / Spam emails
If you have experienced abuse or harassment in connection with either an ad on STClassifieds or an email received from a STClassifieds user, please forward the details (ad title, seller contact details and URL) and sender's email account provider (eg: Hotmail, Yahoo!) to us here.
Once the ad is found to be violating our advertising policies, STClassifieds will suspend all accounts under the user to prevent further abuse. An Ad can be reported as Spam, miscategorised, offensive, no longer current or illegal.