GNcareers, from Gulf News

Safety for buyers on

Before you buy...

•    DEAL LOCALLY WITH FOLKS YOU CAN MEET IN PERSON - follow this one simple rule and you will avoid 99% of the scam attempts.

•    Read the product description carefully. Look at any accompanying photographs, and be clear about what you are buying. Is the asking price realistic? Compare the price with other similar items and be skeptical if it seems too low. Who will pay for shipping costs? Has the seller provided any payment options or information on shipping? If you need further information about the listing, contact the seller. Understand that it is up to you to learn as much as you can about the item before you buy it.

•    Use caution with sellers who promise you their item at a lower price if you complete the transaction outside of the online marketplace site. It could be a scam.

Before you pay...

•    Discuss payment options with the seller. Be cautious of sellers that only provide one option. Decide if you are comfortable sending payment prior to receiving your goods.

•    When arranging payment and pickup of purchases, protect your privacy by revealing only the essential details of your contact and personal information. Do not provide any personal information such as your social security (social insurance) number, credit card number, driver's license number, or bank account number to the seller or any escrow or online payment service until you have verified their legitimacy.

•    Do not send payment by wire transfer. Wire transfers are best reserved for situations where you know the person you are sending it to.

•    Protect yourself by documenting all transactions with the seller