Warning to New York Residents Who Buy & Sell Products Online

A Schenectady, New York family was almost swindled into sending hundreds of dollars to a scam artist disguised as Schenectady, NY landlord. 

The victim found a lovely three bedroom home for rent posted on Craigslist. The “landlord” responded to the victim’s inquires with instructions to wire $700 and in turn the keys would be sent via Fed Ex. 

Advice from suspicious family members urging the victim to do some investigating proved to be merited. The victim went to the house listed and was met by the actual homeowner who knew nothing of the ad. 

In an unrelated incident across the state a teenager and an armed accomplice robbed a Poughkeepsie, New York man who was attempting to sell his cell phone using an app (OfferUP). Another victim attempting to use the app was also robbed in Poughkeepsie within days of the incident. 

Whether you’re making a large scale investment like securing an apartment, or making a smaller transaction like purchasing a cell phone it’s important to know how to protect yourself. Here are some online safety and security tips from Staysafeonline.org, a group powered by the National Cyber Security Alliance:

Conduct research: When using a new website for purchases, read reviews and see if other consumers have had a positive or negative experience with the site. 

Personal information is like money: value it and protect it: When making a purchase online, be alert to the kinds of information being collected to complete the transaction. Make sure you think it is necessary for the vendor to request that information. 

Use safe payment options: Credit cards are generally the safest option because they allow buyers to seek a credit from the issuer if the product isn’t delivered or isn’t what was ordered. “

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