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facebook marketplace scams

Sell and Buy Safely: 10 Tips to Avoid Facebook Marketplace Scams

Are you wondering whether you can buy something safely on Facebook? Perhaps you have a few items you no longer need and you’re thinking about making some money from them. Facebook Marketplace is great for quickly selling and buying but it also has its dangers thanks to Facebook marketplace scams.

If you’re new to Facebook Marketplace, it’s important to get some tips before you start engaging with buyers and sellers. Here are some top tips for avoiding Facebook Marketplace scams.

Keep Things Public

If you agree to purchase or sell something to someone on Facebook, never go to their house if its a total stranger. Going to a stranger’s home puts you at risk of being robbed or being put in an intimidating situation.

If you agree on a sale, meet with the person in a public place. Choose somewhere that’s frequented by people and has security cameras in place. For instance, your local police station car park is an ideal spot to exchange goods.

Treat Everyone With Suspicion

The majority of people that you engage with on Facebook Marketplace will be totally trustworthy. However, there will be the odd few people who try to take advantage of you. You won’t be able to contact Facebook each time you’re suspicious, so use your instincts instead.

If you’re asked to do anything you feel uncomfortable with, say no immediately. If a discussion with someone starts to make you feel awkward, it’s best to end it as soon as possible.

Make Fair Exchanges

Whether you’re selling or buying, the exchanges you arrange on Facebook should always be fair. For example, if you’re selling an item and someone asks if they can collect the item and then make multiple small payments over time, the answer should always be no.

Always collect the money in full before giving any items away. Similarly, you should always pay in full when you’re buying items from a Facebook Marketplace seller. 

Do Your Research

If you see an item you’re interested in buying, it’s worth taking a look at the seller’s profile before showing your interest. There are certain signs that can tell you whether the person is likely to be a scammer.

  • Is the person from your local area? If he’s advertising on a local selling page but doesn’t live in the area, alarm bells should ring.
  • How many friends does the person have? A genuine seller will usually have a lot of friends and activity on their profile. A scammer may have very few friends and not much activity.
  • Check the seller’s image. You can click and drag the image into a search engine and see what comes up. If the image registers with a different name, you know you need to avoid the seller.
  • Is the seller’s image of something generic? If you can’t see a picture of the seller it should raise a red flag. Someone who doesn’t want to be seen may use a picture of a flower or a sunset instead of their face.
  • The seller’s public posts will be a clue as to whether he is trustworthy or not. For example, if the majority of posts are links to gambling sites, weight loss pills or porn, it’s a good indication that you should stay far away.

Is It Worth It?

You may see an item you want to purchase on Facebook Marketplace but that doesn’t mean you should trust the price. It’s important to take a look at what the item is selling for as new and ask questions to determine its condition. If the price just isn’t worth paying, don’t pay it.

If you’re selling an item, it’s often better to underprice than overprice. If you’re not sure about the item’s worth, you may want to get it appraised first. Overpricing an item will often lead to heated arguments if a buyer finds out they’ve over-paid.

Give Evidence

As a seller, it’s important to build up a trustworthy reputation. One of the best ways you can do this is to provide picture evidence of the item’s credentials and receipts or appraisal letters. For example, take a picture of designer clothing labels and what the item was bought for.

If buyers can see you’ve done your research and you’ve already come up with a fair price based on expert advice, they’re far more likely to get in touch without having to do any research of their own. 

Communication Should Be Easy

If you’re having difficulty communicating with a seller or buyer, you may need to think twice about making an exchange. Generally, both sellers and buyers will be enthusiastic about an exchange because they want something from it.

If you’re communicating with someone who is taking days at a time to reply to messages, it could be an indication of a no-show at the exchange. It could also indicate someone who is likely to change your agreement and up the price of the item.

If you can’t make an agreement within a few days, it’s probably time to move on and look elsewhere.

Avoiding Facebook Marketplace Scams

The sad truth is, Facebook Marketplace scams take place every day. If you see something that raises a red flag, don’t take the risk.

Most importantly, always protect your personal details and never give out bank details while using Facebook. If someone asks for your card details to send you an item, quickly refuse.

If you need more help navigating Facebook Marketplace, you can get your questions answered here. It’s a quick and simple way to get the answers you need without having to spend hours searching the internet. 

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settings on facebook

Stay in Control: Everything You Need to Know About Privacy Settings on Facebook

In the second quarter of 2019, Facebook had 2.41 billion monthly active users across the world. When you think about it, this is both amazing and somewhat scary at the same time.

While you can connect to someone halfway around the world with a click of a button, this also means complete strangers can learn all about you within a minute. And sometimes, they can achieve this without having to friend you!

This may be a cause for concern, which is why you need to learn how to adjust your privacy settings on Facebook. Read on to find out more about what settings are available and how you can set them.

Basic Facebook Account Settings

When you create a Facebook account, you can fill in as many details as you want. The profile sections include:

  • Work and Education
  • Places You’ve Lived
  • Contact and Basic Info
  • Family and Relationships
  • Details About You
  • Life Events

It can be fun to fill in all these details since your friends can see what you’ve been up to in your life. But the more information you fill out, the higher the chance you make yourself vulnerable to scammers.

Nowadays, cybercriminals do research on their victims through platforms like Facebook and perform digital attacks called phishing. As you can imagine, the more information they can gather on you, the more convincing they can be.

How to Fight Phishing

There are two ways to combat phishing. First, you can just leave your profile blank. But, that may not be very fun to do.

The other option is to fill out your details but also adjust your privacy settings for each field. There are 4 choices here:

  • Public: This means every person who clicks on your Facebook profile can see your information, even if they’re not your friends.
  • Friends: If people on your friends list click onto your profile, they can see what you’ve filled out. But for everyone else, they won’t see any information.
  • Only me: When anyone clicks on your profile, they won’t see any of the fields you’ve chosen this option for. Only you can see what you’ve filled out for these.
  • Custom: You can create a special list of people who can either see or not see your details. You can include groups you’re in, as well as friends of friends.

The custom option is best if you have a mix of real-life and online friends. That way, you can share vital details about yourself with your real-life friends (such as your telephone number) while keeping them private from your online friends.

Turn on Two-Factor Authentication

There may be a time where you try to log on and no matter how many times you try, it says you have the wrong username and password combination. You may think Facebook is down, but what’s really happened is someone got a hold of your login details, logged in themselves, and changed your password so you can’t get in anymore.

To avoid this scenario happening to you, you should enable two-factor authentication. This is an extra step in verifying your identity. After you enter your username and password, a code will be sent to either your phone or email.

You’ll need to enter this code into Facebook within a short time frame to log in successfully. Otherwise, the code will expire and you’ll need to request one again. If a scammer gets your login details, they won’t be able to make it past the login screen since they’ll need the second factor to continue on.

To turn this feature on, look on the top-right of your screen; there should be an arrow pointing downwards. Click on it, then select “Settings.” On the left, click “Security and Login.”

Here, there are several sections. Look to the middle where it says “Two-Factor Authentication” and click to turn it on.

From now on, whenever you log into your Facebook account from a new device, it’ll either ask you to type in a generated code from the app or email. You only need to do it once on each device; they’ll be verified after that, so you won’t be troubled with two-factor authentication every time you log in.

Basic Facebook Post Settings

Whenever you make posts on your account, there are a few settings you can pick to customize the audience. They’re the same options you have with your account settings: public, friends, only me, and custom.

For the best security possible, you should make sure your default setting is “friends” for your posts. If you ever want to make a public post, you can easily select that option on the dropdown menu when you’re typing it out.

Other Privacy Settings

Make sure you check out other settings by following the same steps outlined above. However, instead of clicking on “Security and Login,” choose the options in the second block, such as “Privacy” and “Blocking.”

Take the time to review each field in these, as it can significantly impact how your information is shared. If there are people you’re trying to avoid, then you’ll definitely want to list them in the “Blocking” section.

Make Sure to Adjust Your Privacy Settings on Facebook

Facebook can be a fun social media platform to be on, but you always have to make sure you stay safe. By knowing how to adjust your privacy settings on Facebook, you’ll be able to connect with new people without divulging too much of your personal information.

By being in control of your privacy settings, you’ll have a safer and more comfortable experience online. 

Do you have any more questions about Facebook? Then make sure to ask one of our experts!

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selling items on facebook

Learn the Marketplace: 5 Tips for Selling Items on Facebook Quickly

Facebook is a juggernaut today, with more than 2 billion active users. With the launch of Facebook Marketplace, you can now sell a number of items to people in a way that earns you profits and lets you start your own business.

Whether this business is a side gig or if you’re trying to grow it into a million-dollar enterprise, there are some strategies for selling items on Facebook Marketplace that you need to bear in mind.

We’ll get you started below by considering the following tips.

1. Know Your Products Inside and Out

If you’re going to sell items on Facebook, you need to be able to completely serve as an advocate for them. The devil is in the detail, so be willing and able to include as much information about the product as possible.

This will inform your customers so that they are fully aware of what they’re purchasing. That not only reduces the number of returns or complaints that you have, but it also speeds up the process since you’ll answer any questions that people have on the front end.

However, this requires you to do as much research as possible so that you can speak intelligently about any listing that you create.

2. Price Them to Sell Quickly

The last thing you’ll want is for your items to sit in the marketplace for a long time. This slows up your progress and also takes up physical space wherever you are storing this inventory.

Your asking price is the key hindrance to this.

Make sure that you go into the process pricing the items in a way that is profitable but fair. That way, you will be able to attract customers to your items in a way that makes them want to complete a purchase.

By pricing items to sell quickly, your customers will feel like they are getting a deal, and will be more than happy to shop your store.

3. Make the Best Use of Advertising

Facebook is also a beast when it comes to advertising. Since a large portion of the world now logs into Facebook, you owe it to yourself to learn the strategies that will help you create Facebook ads that count.

The beauty of Facebook advertising is that you will have access to analytics and results, which will help you keep honing your process so that you can get an amazing return on investment (ROI).

4. Have Some Wiggle Room For Negotiation

Your ability to negotiate will improve your sales margins a great deal. Because of this, the best thing you can do is allow some wiggle room.

Go into each listing with a minimum price that you are willing to accept for an item, but be willing to knock a few dollars off the price whenever customers ask. If your price is firm, make sure that you include that in the listing so that no time is wasted.

5. Be Available to Communicate and Answer Questions

You’ll improve as a Facebook seller when you are available to your customers.

Facebook Marketplace is great because you can easily send messages and respond to any inquiries that people have. The platform will also show people your average time for responding, which may be the difference between them even wanting to do business with you or not.

People are more likely to trust you when you are responsive and attentive, so always make yourself available to field questions. Download the app on your phone so that your customer service department is always open for business.

6. Be Sure You’re Listing in the Best Category

Visibility is everything when it comes to your Facebook Marketplace listing. As such, you’ll need to place the listing in the proper category, so that people can find it without confusion.

Resist the temptation of spamming many different categories, because it will only dilute your listings and make it more difficult for you to gain traction.

7. Stay Up to Date on Facebook’s Terms of Service

Though Facebook Marketplace is convenient, keep in mind that whenever selling on it, you are bound by the company’s terms of service. For instance, you’re not allowed to sell alcohol, pets, counterfeit or replica items or weapons on Facebook.

These terms of service are subject to change from time to time, so it is up to you to stay up to date whenever these changes occur.

You can learn more about these terms of service when you reach out to experts who earn a living selling items online.

8. Get as Much Visibility to Your Listings as Possible

Finally, make sure that you are doing everything that you can to point some attention to your listings.

Get to know the strategies that will get more eyeballs on your listings, and stay up to date with search engine optimization (SEO) practices. You can spread the word about your store via a blog or vlog, which will get your business incredible visibility that will pay dividends.

Remain interactive with your customers and with the public so that you can get the traction that will rake in dollars.

Use These Tips For Selling Items on Facebook Marketplace

Selling items on Facebook Marketplace can be quite rewarding and lucrative if you do it the right way. There is so much untapped potential, and selling on Facebook can become a stream of income that changes your life.

Check out our FAQs to learn more about the professional services we offer!

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facebook group types

What Are the Facebook Group Types and What Are They Used For?

Over 2.4 billion people use Facebook as of the summer of 2019.

You already know Facebook is a powerful way to advertise, as well as to keep in touch with friends and family. But you may not know about one of its biggest features: the Facebook group. Groups are a great way to meet like-minded individuals and keep up-to-date on a variety of topics.

But as Facebook changes so often, it can be overwhelming and confusing to figure out what they are exactly.

In this blog post, we’ll go over the Facebook group types, as well as some of the ways you can use them to maximize your time on the site.

Read on for more.

What is the Difference Between a Facebook Group and a Page?

Admittedly, figuring out the difference between these two can be a little bit confusing. Since Facebook rolled out the pages feature almost a decade ago, many have been trying to figure out which is which, or confused if they have “liked” a page or a Facebook group.

You can have groups that are dedicated to an author or a celebrity or specific brand. But most of the time, groups are created by that celebrity, author or brand in order to connect to you, their audience.

When you “like” a page, you get periodic updates about that individual or company. Only they can post updates. You can respond to the updates and posts, but you can’t start completely new discussions and have people respond to you.

A Facebook group allows everyone an equal voice, though there may be moderators who do not allow certain behavior and activity. In a Facebook group, you can start a conversation at any time, and others can respond to you.

A group may be run by an individual, a group of individuals, or a company.

To explain it simply, a page is there to provide a company or person a sales funnel so that you will take action related to their brand. A group is more focused on the community so that everyone can partake equally.

What is a Hidden or Secret Facebook Group?

Have you ever been invited to a Facebook group that denotes itself as secret? Or have you had someone tell you they’ll have to invite you to the specific group because not everyone can join? Or, have you seen a group change from closed to secret?

If so, you may have participated in a secret group.

These groups are invisible to the public, and they cannot find them by searching on Facebook. Often, these are groups that have sensitive information in them, such as support groups or groups in which people do not want their employers to see.

If you join one of these groups, no one but the group members can see what goes on inside of it. No one can see that you’re in the group, either, just by searching the group or your name.

This gives you a little bit of a sense of protection.

However, you should be aware that just because a Facebook group is secret, it doesn’t mean it’s completely protected. There are individuals who may have nefarious intentions who will join these groups to leak information. You also may not know everyone in the group, and despite the rules to the contrary, there may be people who will screenshot posts and share them with others.

While this does give you an added sense of security, you should still be cautious about what you post in these groups, especially if the groups are run by people that you do not know.

What is a Closed Facebook Group?

A closed Facebook group is one that you still must be invited or approved to enter. However, these groups do show up on searches for the specific groups, and depending on your settings, it may show you’re in this group by looking at your profile.

A closed group may still have sensitive information in it, and likely they will have a moderator who will either approve posts or flag when users are out of control.

Anyone can request to join this type of group, but they must be approved by a moderator. They can also be kicked out if the moderator feels they have not obeyed the rules.

What is an Open Facebook Group?

An open Facebook group is one where not only anyone can join, but anyone can read the posts in it. If someone searches for you on Facebook, they will be able to see all the posts you’ve made in this group and/or the threads in the group that you’ve replied to.

In some cases, you may need permission to join an open Facebook group or to interact in it. But you do need to be aware that everything in it is completely public.

Navigating the Facebook Group Types

These are the major Facebook group types that you may wish to join or are asked to join. Facebook groups can be about almost anything, from someone selling items, to a local community exchanging information about their neighborhood, to people interested in the same thing.

But no matter how secure a Facebook group seems, you must remember that what you post on the Internet can still possibly be accessed by people you do not want to see it.

If you have further questions on Facebook groups, don’t hesitate to contact us. We can help with any of your Facebook queries.

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social media security

5 Essential Social Media Security Tips to Maintain Your Privacy

Studies show that 36% of Americans have had their online accounts hacked; 14% have had them hacked more than once. While you may not give it much thought, social media security is of the utmost importance.

You may think: all hackers will get are your silly quiz answers. Or at most, they’ll get to read conversations between you and your close friends.

But if your sensitive details fall into the wrong hands, you may run the risk of not only a compromised Facebook account but other accounts as well, such as your bank or credit card account. This is because passwords and security questions usually involve personal details that only you would know…unless a hacker gets access to your Facebook account.

If you want to be proactive and protect your social media from prying eyes, here are 5 essential social media security tips to maintain your privacy.

1. Use Different Passwords Across Your Accounts

It may be a lot easier to use one password across your multiple online accounts, but this would have a devastating effect should one get compromised.

Once a hacker gets their hands on your password, they usually try the same email/username and password combination across different sites. You may think that Facebook isn’t working since you can’t log in, but the fact is, the hacker’s gotten into your account and changed the password.

Not only that, but they may gain access to other important accounts, such as your bank account. From here, they can transfer money to themselves (or gather other important bits of information on other sites).

If you have any non-bank accounts that have a balance, they can either take advantage of that or transfer it to themselves as well. For example, if you enjoy playing a video game with your grandchildren through Steam, the hacker can hijack the account and transfer valuable items to their own account.

It may be more difficult to use different passwords across all your accounts, but this will upgrade your social media security immensely. If you have trouble remembering all your passwords, try using a secure password manager. This convenient add-on will store all of your passwords and is encrypted so no one can steal them.

2. Limit Your Public Information

It can be quite exciting to fill out as much information as you can on your Facebook profile. For instance, if you graduated in the ’72 class of a particular high school, filling out that detail can help you connect with others in your graduating class.

But leaving this information public can inadvertently lead to your accounts being compromised. For example, if your security question for your bank account is “What year did I graduate from high school?” then hackers can easily find that information by plugging in your name into Facebook’s search bar.

You can prevent this from happening by limiting your public information. You can achieve this in several ways.

The first way is by leaving your personal information blank on Facebook. However, this may not be ideal, as it can hinder your networking efforts.

The second way is to fill out your information, but to put the privacy settings from “public” to “friends only.” That way, only people you’ve screened for your friend list can see your personal details.

3. Enable Two-Factor Authentication

Normally, you’d only need a username/email and password to log into an account. But if you enable two-factor authentication, you’ll also need a time-sensitive code to input. Each time you log in, you’ll be sent a randomly generated code through either text or email.

Two-factor authentication may seem like a pain to deal with, but it can act as a second gatekeeper for hackers. If they somehow manage to get your password, they still won’t be able to access your accounts since they can’t obtain the code.

If someone tries to access your account but fails two-factor authentication, Facebook (and other sites with this feature) will let you know. If you get a notification of a failed log-in, it’s best to change all your passwords, to be on the safe side.

4. Only Accept Friend Requests From People You Know

It can be amazing to make friends from all around the world with the click of a button. Social media offers you a convenient glimpse into cultures from all around the world.

But that doesn’t mean you should accept any and all friend requests. Many of these people are scammers are hoping to gain access to your private information.

If you want to make friends who don’t live anywhere near, trying joining a Facebook group first. For instance, if you love crocheting, join one for crochet lovers.

Once you’re in, you may find someone who you click with and converse a lot with about patterns and projects. After you’ve gotten to know them and screen them as a real person, you can then consider sending a friend request. Or you can leave the conversations in the Facebook group for maximum security.

5. Disable Location Sharing

Modern technology’s made it easy for us to check into or tag locations we’re currently in. It can be beneficial if you’re planning on making a geographic diary later on.

But the location sharing feature can be a disadvantage. Even if your posts aren’t public, all the people on your friend’s list know you’re not at home. Some of the more unsavory characters may use this opportunity to rob your house.

If you still want to keep a geo diary, take pictures and don’t post them on your social media—at least not immediately. The photos will have the geo data automatically saved if you haven’t turned that feature off (it’ll show exactly when and where you took the picture). Once you’re safely home, then you can post the pictures on your Facebook account.

Keep Your Accounts Safe With These Social Media Security Tips

Social media seems like a fun way to connect with, and it can be. But unfortunately, there will always be unscrupulous people who try and gather as much information about you so they have a better chance of phishing you.

By following the simple social media security tips we’ve outlined for you above, you’ll have a better chance of keeping unsavory characters away from your personal information.

Have any more questions regarding your Facebook account? We’re here to help! All you have to do is ask our experts and they’ll help you promptly!

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