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Online Safety / Scam Protection
Just like everywhere else in life, the Internet has a few bad apples that can get in the way of your online experience. The good news is that there are some simple steps you can follow to stop online tricksters from raining on your parade!

Do remember the 5 golden rules of browsing and buying online:-
1. Have up-to-date antivirus software
2. Have up-to-date firewall software
3. Choose a secure password
4. Always log off when you're done
5. Most importantly...If it looks too good to be true, then it probably is!

False enquiries
False enquiry scams are also known as buyer scams as they often involve fraudsters posing as buyers interested in item(s) for sale.

What can you do to avoid these scams?
There are some simple things you can do to avoid them:-
  • Never complete a transaction based on buyers emailing you ‘proof of payment’ receipt
  • Independently verify with your bank or any other account that the funds have been received by personally logging in and checking the account yourself.
  • Be suspicious of buyers who offer you much more than the item is worth.
  • Don’t accept international cheques or money orders.
  • Even if the excuse they give sounds realistic, you should still be wary of requests to refund excess money by instant means like internet banking or wire transfers.

Phishing Scams
Phishing (pronounced 'fishing') scams are carried out by fraudsters who try to trick buyers and sellers into giving out personal information or banking details by posing as trusted organisations.

These scams are typically carried out by email but fraudsters can also try and get in contact with buyers and sellers over the phone (called Vishing) or by text message (called Smishing).

With the rise in use of mobile phones, Smishing scams are growing in popularity with fraudsters. Mobile users are being targeted by text messages from seemingly legitimate sources. These messages, like phishing scams, seek to dupe users into providing personal details or encourage buyers who enquired on a false listing to resume trading with the seller.

What can you do to avoid these scams?
  • Stay calm! Fraudsters often make their emails sound urgent, claiming your account is frozen or locked – resist the urge to reply immediately.
  • Check the ‘from’ email address. Official-looking emails from free email service providers are a tell tale sign the email is a fake.
  • Don’t click on links provided in emails. Instead use your ‘favourites’ tab to navigate to the website or type the website address directly into your web-browser.
  • Don’t click on links in text messages and be wary of text messages from overseas or automated mobile numbers.

Payment Scams
Payment scams often involve false sellers trying to trick you into sending your hard-earned cash for items that just don't exist.

What can you do to avoid these scams?
  • Choose a payment method you’re comfortable with. Make sure any payments you do make are traceable and/or refundable and that you are receive proof of purchase such as a receipt or email confirmation directly from the provider.
  • Never send cash in the mail or by money transfer services such as Western Union.
  • Ask the seller lots of questions about the item, they might not have included all the information you need to make an educated decision about purchasing their item in their advertisement.
  • Ask to see the item in person before committing to purchasing it. This way you can confirm the item is genuine and see first hand what condition it is in.

Buyer Safety
There are a few simple steps you can follow to outsmart the tricksters and protect yourself online through every stage of the buying process.

1. Whether you’re just browsing or you have something specific in mind, keep an eye out for significantly undervalued items.
2. Once you have found something you’re interested in, find out more details about it
  • If the seller hasn’t provided a phone number, be sure and email them questions to make sure they’re a legitimate seller.
  • If the seller has provided a phone number make sure it works, also check to see the other details the seller has provided are correct.
  • Have some key questions about the item ready to ask the seller to make sure they and their item are genuine.
  • Find out as much information as you can! The more you know, the better you can make an educated decision.
3. The photos of the item might be fabulous, but nothing is as good as the real thing.
  • Where possible, arrange to meet at a neutral location like a police station car park and try to take someone with you when you meet the seller.
  • Before you test drive a car, bike or boat, make sure your insurance (comprehensive!) covers test drives.
  • Be wary of sellers asking for a deposit at this stage. If you do choose to put a deposit down make sure you get a receipt stamped with the date & time.
4. Before making an offer…
  • Know your limits when negotiating. What are you willing to pay?
  • Know the value of an item before you make a deal.
  • For vehicles, make sure you complete check to dig up any past issues the seller may have forgotten to fill you in on.
5. Congratulations on your purchase! Be safe in payment to the seller…
  • Use a method of payment that provides you with proof of purchase like a receipt or email confirmation directly from the provider.
  • Also ask for a signed receipt with the date and time to confirm payment.
  • Never send cash in the mail or by money transfer services such as Western Union.
  • We also encourage you to check our scam updates regularly.
Seller safety
Help make selling online safer by following these simple steps to protect yourself and buyers from online tricksters.

1. Creating your advertisement is easy, but make sure you remember to…
  • Choose a secure password for your account.
  • Include the correct details & features of your item.
2. Find a balance between the price you want and the price you think buyers will pay for.
  • Research similar items on Carstation network to determine if your price expectations are realistic.
  • Don’t sell yourself short.
3. Potential buyers will ask questions about the item and you to make sure you’re a legitimate seller, but…
  • Be wary of buyers requesting specific personal details. You shouldn’t need to provide them with your account details or any banking information.
  • Be wary of buyers who offer you much more than the asking price or who ask you to pay for services such as shipping, agent fees, or customs charges.
  • Remember, Carstation network will never ask for your account information or login details by email.
4. Buyers can ask to inspect the item prior to purchase so they can make sure they’re happy with it…
  • Where possible, arrange to meet at a neutral location like a police station car park and try to take someone with you.
  • Make sure you take key information like registration details, vehicle log books and roadworthy certificates.
  • Is the buyer who they say they are? Before they take your car out for a test drive, ask to see their licence. Bring a pen and paper so you can write it down.
5. Before you accept an offer…
  • Know how much you’re willing to accept and prepare to negotiate to a minimum price.
  • Don’t take your ad down until you are certain you have received payment from the buyer – it won’t cost you anything to have it up longer.
  • Ensure you have your transfer of ownership details ready to go.
6. Congratulations on your sale! Be sae when negotiating payment with the buyer…
  • We don't offer any Escrow Services, and don't recommend using money transfer services such as Western Union.
  • Don’t rely on “proof” of payment from the buyer. Check with your bank or any other accounts that the money has been cleared and you can see the funds in your account before parting with your item.
  • Give the buyer a receipt to confirm you’ve received their payment.