Millions of people log onto websites such as Craigslist.com each day to sell their items, look for new jobs, and in some cases, even to meet that special someone.
However, despite the many good attributes of the website, there are many instances of transactions that originated from the website going wrong. One infamous example comes from several years ago, when a young medical student from Boston used the website to lure in female sex workers, whom he then murdered.
Recently, a Nassau County man eager to buy a watch went to the seller's home to pick up his purchase. However, he was instead greeted with a handgun when he went to an address in Lakeview. The suspect later fled the scene. That case is still under investigation.
Although there are millions of reputable people who use these sites for the right reasons, it is sometimes difficult to really know who is on the other end of the computer.
However, there are many pieces of advice which can help browsers safely and effectively use Craigslist.com and similar websites.
From a buyer's perspective, never go to a residence to pick up a purchase by yourself. You never know what you might be walking into, so it is wise to bring a friend or relative with you for added comfort. If you are a seller, do not invite strangers into your home, or meet a buyer in a secluded place. If no one is available to go with you, tell a trusted friend of relative where you are going, and take along your cellular phone.
Deal with sellers and buyers who are living locally, so that you can meet in person. In order to avoid scams, never give out any of your financial information, or agree to a wire transfer.
These simple pieces of advice should make your future online shopping experiences safer, offering peace of mind.