Guidelines for Safe Online Transactions
Send and receive payment safely. Tips in order to send or receive payments safely.
- If an offer looks too good to be true, it probably is! Maintain a healthy skepticism.
- Verify the Buyer or Seller's identity. Do addresses and names match up in public records or directories? It's best to meet the seller in person in a safe place.
- Be cautious of an individual posing as an "agent" representing a buyer or seller, or when dealing with someone outside your country.
- Do not make a purchase only from photos. A photo does not verify the existence of an item. See the item in person.
- If using an escrow service for payment of the transaction, verify that it is a reliable service. Do not use an escrow service recommended by the seller. WheelByNet LLC, does NOT offer any type of escrow services.
- Fraud deals may involve shipping, wire transfers, overpayment or cashiers checks. Unusual requests involving the transaction may be a signal of a potential scam.
- Use your best judgment in all transactions
- Report suspected fraudulent activity Here.
Recommendations for Buyers
Know the vehicle's market value
Be very suspicious of any vehicle priced significantly below market value. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Inspect the vehicle
Have a professional mechanic or inspection service inspect the vehicle to identify problems. However, an inspection doesn't guarantee a vehicle is free from defects or any existing problems.
Confirm contact information
Verify the seller's physical address and phone number. Zip codes, area codes and addresses should match up.
Use email wisely
Do not send personal or financial information (such as your social security number, credit card number or checking account number) to a seller via email. Email communications are not secure.
Do not use money transfer services, such as Western Union to pay for online purchases
Even Western Union recommends against using their service or similar services to pay for online purchases. Be cautious about any seller who will only accept a money transfer.
If using an escrow service for payment, make sure it is a reputable, valid escrow service
Some buyers, purchasing outside their local area, may consider using an escrow service. If so, make sure it is a legitimate service. Do NOT go to an escrow service through a link in the seller's e-mail or use a service based on a referral from the seller. Check the web address to make sure you are at the valid website.
Get a detailed receipt
Ask the seller for a receipt that states whether the vehicle is being sold with a warranty or "as is."
Get title to the vehicle
Make sure you know what's required in your state to transfer title to the vehicle you're buying.
Recommendations for Sellers
Confirm contact information
Be wary of buyers willing to purchase your item sight-unseen, especially buyers located overseas. ALWAYS VERIFY the buyer's street address and valid phone number.
Verify that a certified check is genuine
Verify authenticity with the issuing bank prior to depositing a certified check. Make sure the account contains sufficient funds and the issuing bank guarantees payment on the check. Once deposited in your account, it may take a week or more for the check to clear. Acceptance by your bank does not guarantee the check is valid and funds are available. A cashier's check can take 30 days or more to clear.
Secure payment first
Do not transfer the title until you have payment in hand at the agreed upon price (and you have verified that the payment is valid.
Beware of overpayment or other complicated payment schemes
Do not agree to any plan where the buyer asks to send a check for more than the sale price and requests that the seller refund the difference. Be suspicious of any buyer who proposes making payment through a friend or agent of the buyer.
Stay Safe Online
- Be cautious about opening email attachments. Always make sure you scan them with anti-virus software first. Do not click on links within unsolicited email.
- Do not click links inside an email you do not know is legitimate, even if it is sent from someone you know. Viruses are often hidden in seemingly harmless programs that people share for fun. Because many viruses make use of peoples' address books, you may receive virus emails from people you know.
- Contact the sender to make sure the email is legitimate, and scan it carefully. Avoid having email programs set to preview email, as this can open a virus email before you have a chance to scan it.
- Never send credit card numbers via email.
- Credit card purchases can usually be disputed with the credit card company if a problem arises.
- If purchasing outside your local area, consider using a legitimate escrow service. Go to the escrow service's website directly. Do not go to the website through a link in an email or use a service recommended by the seller.
Anti-Virus Software/Anti-Spyware and Firewalls
- Protect your computer by using the most updated versions of anti-virus software to scan your system and e-mail for malicious viruses.
- Use anti-spyware or adware programs to remove programs that track your Internet activity.
- Use a firewall to make your computer invisible to outside attackers.
Security Updates for Operating Systems/Browsers
- Make sure to download, and install security updates for all browsers and operating systems in use on your computer frequently.
- Keeping browser versions up-to-date is critical to computer security, and proper functionality of the latest security elements used in Internet e-commerce.