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Avoid Internet Auction Fraud With These Tips

In the early days of internet auctions you were much more likely to be conned than you are today. Figures from the National Fraud Information Center for the year 2000 stated that 78% of Internet fraud at that time took place on online auction sites. Since then the big sites have taken major steps to make their auctions safer places for their users. 

Although it is safer to buy online from auctions today, you still need to be careful when transacting in internet auctions. Here are some tips to ensure you don't get taken advantage of. 

Buy from sellers with good feedback scores as this is one of your best protections. This is a feature of internet auctions which can't be compared by other online retailers. This independent rating system will give you a very good indication of which sellers can be trusted. Ensure the seller has carried out enough selling auctions for it to be a reliable indicator. 

Pay by credit card, which is usually the safest method. That way, if you have any problems you can seek redress through your credit card provider. This is a facility you wouldn't normally have when buying from a private individual, so use this extra security feature of online auctions. 

Use the big name auction sites because they want to protect their reputation. That means they'll take any fraud complaints seriously and deal with the culprits quickly because it's in their best interest to do so. Stay away from the small sites that nobody's heard of.

Make sure you know exactly what the product or service you are buying is worth to you. Do this right from the start and you'll be in a better position to make sure you don't overbid and end up paying more than the item's worth. There are plenty of people who will testify to having been caught up in a bidding frenzy. Auctions can be exciting and addictive, but it does not make sense to pay more for items at an auction than those that can readily be bought elsewhere. 

When you place a bid you have entered into a contract with the seller. Think before you bid. Do not place a bid if you do not really want the item. If you don't that bright orange, floral bathroom sink could be yours! 

Remember that expression that says buying on internet auction sites - if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Have a great time - but be careful!


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