Here are some tips recommended by Craigslist that its users should implement to ensure even greater safety and avoid scams:
- 1. Only interact with people who live locally and can meet you in a public place
2. Do not give out any personal information
3. Do not invite anyone to come to your home
4. Never meet anyone, even in a public place without bringing a friend along or at least letting someone know where you will be and at what time
5. Never send funds through any wire transfer service
6. Never give out financial information
7. Avoid deals that involve shipping or escrow services
8. Do not rent housing or buy an expensive item without seeing it first-hand
9. Never submit to credit checks or background checks
While Craigslist may have its good and bad points when it comes to security, you may also want to consider some of its other perks/drawbacks. Many consider craigslist as a form of online garage sale and use it to get rid of unwanted items—like couches that are too heavy to lift, baby supplies like strollers and car seats, and even boyfriends!
There is also a section of free items available to choose from. This is great for people who have useful items that aren’t worth much, but they don’t want them to go to waste—bags of packing peanuts, cardboard toilet paper rolls, and an unopened can of Diet Pepsi. Just like on the popular PBS series, Antiques Roadshow, you never know when someone is going to be selling an absolute treasure, or even giving it away for that matter! Some postings are so unique and interesting that they have inspired a “Best of Craigslist” flag category.
Many people have found gainful employment due to a Craigslist posting. There has been more than one career started through Craigslist advertising, such as the Hipster House cleaner from Washington, D.C., as well as the author of this article. There are thousands of success stories of people locating housing—you can find anything from a single bedroom rental to a multi-million dollar home for sale in Malibu. And finally, there have been many happy couples who were able to meet by making a connection through Craigslist.
Similar to classified ads in the newspaper, Craigslist can be an amazing resource for communities—providing goods, services and job opportunities that are open to anyone—yet you still have to use caution when making any transactions and even while you are searching for products or services. The final word is that if you don’t want your children to be exposed to scams, inappropriate language, or explicit material, it is best to block them from using Craigslist. And make sure that you, yourself, use smart safety practices when visiting the site.
About the Author
Natalie Clive is a writer for MyCollegesandCareers.com. My Colleges and Careers helps people determine if an online education is right for them and helps them search for online degrees that can help them reach their goals.
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