Beware of buy-and-sell scams on Facebook

Nov 03, 2023

Facebook Marketplace and other buy-and-sell sites can be great places to get a deal, but sadly, there’s also the risk of scams. Scams on Facebook Marketplace include:

Phishing – Phishing are scams that get you to provide personal information without realizing it. It happens through links to fake websites, messages, or emails asking you to provide verification codes or account information.

Buyer scam – Someone claiming they didn’t receive the item from you, not paying, or reporting the transaction as fraud after they received the item.

Seller scam – Someone tries to sell items without delivering the item. This can include asking you to send a deposit for a high-value item.

Listing scam – a listing is fake or dishonest or lures the buyer off Facebook to complete the transaction.

Scams on buy-and-sell sites could happen to anyone. There are some general tips you can follow to avoid falling victim:

  • If something seems too good to be true, it likely is.
  • Review the seller’s profile and Facebook account to assess whether they’re real. See other things they’re selling and ratings they’ve received.
  • If you aren’t sure if it might be a scam, ask someone else for another opinion or avoid the transaction.
  • If selling an item, don’t let them leave with the item before funds are received.
  • Don’t share your financial information.
  • Don’t send deposits before verifying the item. Go see it. For high value items, such as a luxury handbag, you can also ask for proof of purchase or certificate of authenticity.
  • If you feel something may be a scam, you can report it to Facebook. If you are scammed, you can also report it Facebook.