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Craigslist is ripe with opportunities for consumer fraud

Shopping is not the same as it was even a generation ago. More consumers use online sites to buy clothing, household items and groceries. Even yard sale shopping has evolved since the advent of Craigslist. However, if Illinois Craigslist users are not cautious, they can become victims of consumer fraud.

Finding a bargain on Craigslist may be exciting, but it could be a scam. For example, many consumers who purchase tickets for concerts or sporting evens soon learn they have paid for fraudulent tickets or tickets that are already canceled. Consumer advocates recommend using only reputable ticket sites, especially when purchasing plane tickets.

It is critical for consumers to read Craigslist ads carefully and examine the website address to ensure they have not wandered onto a fake site. The same is true for PayPal confirmation emails, which will never ask a user to wire money or refer to the user by first name only. Consumer advocates urge users of Craigslist to be wary of buyers or sellers who want to use money orders or checks for transactions as these can be easily counterfeited.

Of course, it is never recommended to give one's bank account number or other financial information to anyone. Since Craigslist is supposed to bring together sellers and buyers in a common region, transactions with sellers who are not willing to meet with a buyer personally can easily be fraudulent. In such circumstances, an Illinois consumer can seek the advice and guidance of an attorney experienced in civil litigation and consumer fraud.

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