Tips to Avoid Online Auction Fraud

Written by John Lynch


Continued from page 1

4) Use an Escrow Service

For higher priced items you should consider an escrow service. An escrow service acts as a middleman betweenrepparttar buyer andrepparttar 116920 seller to ensure a fair transaction.

The escrow service holdsrepparttar 116921 item andrepparttar 116922 money untilrepparttar 116923 buyer has inspected and approvedrepparttar 116924 goods. Only then does it releaserepparttar 116925 money torepparttar 116926 seller.

The only downside is that it will costrepparttar 116927 buyer extra to use this service. However, it is something to bear in mind when buying more expensive items.

5) Complaints/ Fraud Protection

Most online auction sites have a complaints' procedure. For example,if you're unhappy withrepparttar 116928 goods or you have not received them, Ebay operates a fraud protection program. For more information go to : http://pages.ebay.com/help/community/fpp-guide.html

FlipShark has a useful site on internet auction scams. www.flipshark.com/scams/ebayindex.html

The US Federal Trade Commission has a useful guide for buyers and sellers on internet auctions which has relevance to other countries. www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/online/auctions.htm

To sum up, most buyers and sellers on internet auction sites are honest. However, if you userepparttar 116929 above tips, you should not fall victim to auction fraud.

2003 John Lynch

Visit http://www.merchant-account-service.com/ebay.html for a FREE extensive auctions course on how to start a successful online auctions business. ==========================

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Don't Let Them Take Your Money and Run!

Written by Denise Hall


Continued from page 1

Holdrepparttar boat! Why on earth would people use their website contact-type e-mail addresses for their investment program? It looked likerepparttar 116919 website owner bought or harvested e-mail addresses to use as his "client" list.

A lot ofrepparttar 116920 addresses were forrepparttar 116921 same domain, but with a different "name" - i.e. admin@business, contact@business, help@business, etc. And many ofrepparttar 116922 addresses listed were autoresponders to subscribe to newsletters or receive other information.

Here a few e-mail addresses that I got a real kick out of:

jeeves1@askjeeves.co.uk someone@nowhere gov@gov.state.hi.us comments@scambusters abuse@verisign

Butrepparttar 116923 absolute *best* one is .... (drum roll please) .....

dateline.consumeralert@nbc

Now, what should I do with that one? You guessed it! I'm sending them a copy of this article. I wonder what they'll think when they see that they supposedly invested in this program? What I really wonder is how fast they'll get it shut down so people don't lose money to such scam artists.

In all fairness, I looked atrepparttar 116924 contact information atrepparttar 116925 website. Here's what it says:

"Unlike many 'businesses' onrepparttar 116926 internet, we do not 'hide' behind our website. You are free to contact us at any time, evenrepparttar 116927 CEO if need be. Allrepparttar 116928 information is listed below, or use our Live Help chat onrepparttar 116929 left."

Unfortunately,repparttar 116930 live chat was "temporarily down" so, of course, I e-mailedrepparttar 116931 CEO with several questions and I'm waiting for a reply. (But I do find it strange that his contact address is a hotmail account.)

Atrepparttar 116932 time of this writing, I checkedrepparttar 116933 list of "clients" again. They've updated it andrepparttar 116934 e-mail addresses I saw 2 days ago are no longer there. Neither arerepparttar 116935 domain names for those that have taken their place. And most ofrepparttar 116936 addresses now appear to be personal addresses, not those of business websites.

They've also posted this message:

"Sorry, but we had to removerepparttar 116937 ending ofrepparttar 116938 email address because we received a ton of complaints about someone spamming our investors"

I wonder if that'srepparttar 116939 *real* reason. My guess is that at least one ofrepparttar 116940 people I wrote to contacted them, probably threatened legal action, andrepparttar 116941 website owner bought a new list of e-mail addresses to post as his "clients."

But wait! There's more! I decided to checkrepparttar 116942 domain registration information at WhoIs.com. And *that* gave me yet another clue that something might be rotten in Denmark.

The website name, InvestWithGold.com, was registered on April 19, 2004 - a mere 10 days before I discoveredrepparttar 116943 website and 12 days before I wrote this article. And yetrepparttar 116944 company claims to have been in business since 1998!

The datesrepparttar 116945 "clients" supposedly earned huge returns on their investments were from April 9th through 16threpparttar 116946 first time I visitedrepparttar 116947 site. Today's update shows profits for April 17th through 23rd.

So, unlessrepparttar 116948 owner changedrepparttar 116949 name of his company and/or registeredrepparttar 116950 new name with a different domain registrar, his "clients" made money *before* he even had his website!

Granted, he could have had his business offline until recently. Butrepparttar 116951 copyright atrepparttar 116952 bottom ofrepparttar 116953 site says "2001-2004" which indicates that he's hadrepparttar 116954 website since 2001.

Alas! A scammer's work is never done! They'll always find a new scam to run and con as many people as they can. They have no integrity and they don't care who they rip off.

Always do your homework before investing in any income opportunity. Don't let yourself get caught up inrepparttar 116955 bogus "get rich quick" aspects that can sound so good. You don't want to learnrepparttar 116956 hard way that they aren't what they claim to be.

Denise Hall is the owner of Home Business on a Budget which specializes in tools and resources for your home business needs. Visit http://www.home-business-on-a-budget.com today. Get weekly articles, tips, information and resources here: http://tinyurl.com/4f9k8

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