Skip to content

Too good to be true? It probably is, police warn

South Simcoe police has received a number of complaints regarding online shopping
120618-fraud-banking-online scam-phone scam-online shopping-AdobeStock_191377886
Stock image

South Simcoe Police Service wants to remind you to be cautious when shopping on classified websites. We are have recently received reports of incidents involving both buyers and sellers on Kijiji.

Remember the old saying - if it's too good to be true, it probably is. Make exchanges in a busy, public place during daylight hours. Let a friend or family member know where you are going, who you are meeting and when they can expect you back in advance.

The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre has these tips for safe, online transactions.

Warning signs for buyers - How to protect yourself

Never make a deal outside the auction site, and be cautious of items offered through online classified ads for extremely low prices
Beware if there is limited or no feedback rating on sellers
Beware of sellers from overseas
Use a credit card when shopping online. Customers are offered protection and may receive a refund
Inspect the website thoroughly. Often counterfeit websites will contain spelling mistakes and grammatical errors

Warning signs for sellers - How to protect yourself

Always meet in a local, public and safe location to complete the exchange
Beware of generic emails with bad grammar
Beware of overseas buyers who want to buy sight unseen
Review all emails to ensure they are not spoofed
Never send money to get money
Do an open source search to see if anyone has reported the fraudulent seller

The classified shopping community is full of honest, well intentioned people but we encourage you to always remember your personal safety. For more information on how to protect yourself and the latest scams, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website. To report a scam call toll-free 1-888-495-8501.