Avoiding Online Scams and Fraud

Criminals are increasingly using e-mail as a tool for fraud. Please be aware that there are scam artists who enjoy trying to take advantage of free services such as our classifieds. If something sounds suspicious or too good to be true, it probably is.

Rules to follow:

  • Deal locally with people you can meet in person or by local phone call. While not foolproof, the best way to avoid scam artists is to deal only with buyers and sellers here in Idaho and eastern Oregon
  • Never give out financial information (bank account number, social security number, eBay/PayPal info, etc.)
  • Never wire funds (via Western Union, MoneyGram or other wire service)
  • Watch out for fraudulent cashier’s checks and/or money orders
  • Beware when payment is required upfront or when you are asked to return money to the buyer
  • Avoid deals involving shipping or escrow services
  • Be cautious of e-mails with spelling errors, grammar problems, or inconsistent information
  • Don’t open or respond to spam—this will confirm to the sender that your e-mail account is active and working, and could make you more of a target
  • Scammers will often “guarantee” a transaction – this is a hallmark of a fraudulent deal
  • ZIdaho.com is not involved in any transaction. We are not involved with shipping, payment or any other part of your transaction with a buyer or seller. 

Who should I notify about fraud or scam attempts?

  • State of Idaho—Office of Attorney General
    700 W. Jefferson Street
    P.O. Box 83720
    Boise, ID 83720-0010
    Phone (208) 334-2400
    Fax (208) 854-8071
  • Internet Fraud Complaint Center (www.ic3.gov/)
  • FTC toll free hotline: 877-FTC-HELP (877-382-4357)
  • FTC online complaint form (www.ftc.gov)

Feel free to contact us if you want to report information about a fraudulent listing on ZIdaho.com. Click here to contact us.


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