How to tell if you’re buying from a scammer

Buying and selling on classified sites like Austree can be very rewarding but that doesn’t mean it’s risk free. It’s important, as a buyer, to be aware of who you are buying from. Here are a few tips to make sure your experience is as pleasant as possible by knowing how to tell if you’re buying from a scammer.


On the Site
Look out for products that are priced unreasonably low, ever heard of the saying too good to be true? If a seller has posted multiple ads of the same product it could be a scammer or just someone desperate to get their ad noticed, either way it’s not allowed on our site. Use the report button to notify us and we will follow up on the situation.

mark ad as

                                                                 (Report Spam ads to Austree Classifieds team)

If the image is a stock image of a product or an image that can be found in Google search just press report and keep looking. We ask all buyers to report ads in broken English as majority of fraud on website is done by foreigners pretending to be in Australia. This doesn’t mean that all the ads that look like scam would be a scam, just that there’s a high risk of it being one, so rather let us make the decision.

If the ad refers you to an external site it’s probably a fraudulent site created for that purpose. These types of scammers always steal on a large scale. That’s why we encourage our users to first ring the number phone number provided by seller and communicate directly to arrange inspection of product and make a deal. If the number provided by seller doesn’t exists or is disconnected, this ad could be more likely a scam, and should be reported to us immediately so we can take an appropriate action. You can also use our online messaging system to interact with seller so we can monitor it all.

After the site
Even after you’ve followed the on-site steps you need to be alert. Just because their ad looks legit doesn’t mean they are. When you contact the seller look out for these signs:

1. They claim they have ‘other potential buyer’ and put pressure on you to make a hasty EFT payment.

2. If they ask for EFT payments without you seeing or exchanging the product. Remember once the money has been sent to them it’s gone.

3. They ask you to email them privately instead of using the messaging function on Austree or calling you. This takes you away from the site making it easier for them to manipulate you and harder for us to track them. Remember it’s easier for them to hide behind an email than a phone call.

4. We see the highest number of scams in the trading of the following products so be extra vigilant when looking to buy any of these;

–    Mobile Phones
–    Gadgets
–    Pets Specially (Dogs,Cats & Birds)
–    Buying or Selling Cars, especially import models.
–    Buying or Selling Properties or rentals overseas.

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