How to stay safe while buying and selling on Facebook Marketplace

Nina Pineda Image
Thursday, May 16, 2024
Safety tips for buying and selling on Facebook Marketplace
7 On Your Side's Nina Pineda has timely advice following a string of robberires.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Facebook has the largest online marketplace, but people are buying and selling through classified ads, Craigslist, eBay, and all over social media, most of it is sellers and buyers exchanging goods for cash.

One crime spree which police say started on Facebook Marketplace and ended with thieves violently robbing victims in New York City, sheds light on the importance of safety during any meet-up involving money and strangers.

During an attempted robbery of a car sale advertised on Facebook Marketplace.

Off-duty NYPD Officer Adeed Fayaz was shot and later died from his injuries when the seller whipped out a gun in Brooklyn and fired at the young father's head.

Cars with fake titles have lured many victims into harrowing exchanges.

One woman in Yonkers saw an Infiniti for sale on Facebook and after a flurry of texts, a fake title, and a meetup at a grocery store to exchange money for keys, "The car was reported stolen a week later, we had it in possession."

She's out the $8,000 and the police confiscated the car.

Ring camera video captured the frightening moment when police informed a Facebook Marketplace buyer that the car she had just purchased was stolen.

"I was stunned, and super scared," they said.

If the sale involves a car, always run a vehicle history report. A BMW was reported stolen but popped up in a Facebook ad.

Facebook advises keeping it local during exchanges.

Try to meet and inspect the item first before sending any money.

Check the seller's or buyer's Facebook profile carefully.

A good sign is an established profile with a lot of friends. Mutual friends are best.

Do a reverse image search of the item listed.

Don't give away personal information.

Utilize safe exchange points, many municipalities establish safe zones for internet exchanges.

Meet in a public well-lit area.

Never go to a meeting alone or meet at your home.

Share the meeting plan.

Find a safe exchange point.

I guarantee if you tell anyone to meet you at the local police station you will weed out anyone with bad intent.

ALSO READ: NYPD investigating string of robberies stemming from Facebook Marketplace sales

Joe Torres has the story in Chinatown on the robberies.

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