Hello Black Hatters, Recently there have been a few of people who have been burned by scam artists...Not on this forum but other forums. It always makes my heart drop to learn someone else just lost $1,000 big ones or more. Even if its only $20 bucks it still sucks! I thought I would piece together a thread on how NOT to get scammed. Please feel free to post your suggestions and add them too! 1. Do your research on buyer/seller a) number of posts on forum b) quality of posts of forum c) length of time on forum d) Who do they know on the forum (do you trust them) e) Search their username on Google, they may belong to other forums under the same username. F) Most important. If you are buying their website or service Google the website name i.e. "selling xxxx.com" it may return another listing of where the seller is selling the website or service. 2. Research the product or business a) How many other people are selling item/service b) Compare pricing?Are they offering the good/service "too" cheaply 3. Beware of incredible claims If someone is offering you a script which makes them $20,000 a month be wary of it. Ask for detailed screen shots of the program. Better yet ask them if you can log into their account to verify their earnings. a) Ensure that you know exactly what you are getting. Over communication on your part is better than under communication. If you have to repeat things several times just to get your point across. b) If it sounds too good, it probably is. I recently saw a webmaster trying to sell a traffic trading website for $8,000. He claimed it was making about $5,000 a month and simply didn't have time for it anymore. He even had pay pal stats. In this scenario err on the side of caution and use common sense. Your mind will be telling you "Shit this is a great deal...I better buy this before someone else does" But slow down, do your research and rethink. Screen shots can be edited can be copied from another website. I would not touch this website with a 50 ft pole! 4. Payment Methods a) Agree exact terms of payment before bidding/completing contract * price * timing of payments *method b) Use your credit card to make purchases. Never wire transfer and try not to use direct banking transactions to pay for items. 5. Don't come across as a newbie or person trying to make it big Scammers work off this principle of catching you and playing off your ego. I.E "Omg this website will make you so much money, you'll be thanking me later" ect.. 6. Don't get carried away in the excitement of winning an auction. Auction type sales tend to move people into the buying mode fast because it lets people know that there are other people out there who are interested in the same product as you, and you have to out bid them and pay more if you want to win the item. Lots of times people just rush and miss key details. 7. Make sure you know their contact details such as email addresses and Screen names. For big purchases get a phone number and address - why shouldn't they give it to you? They shouldn't have anything to hide. 8. When in serious doubt and you've done your research don't buy it. There will always be legit deals coming your way just be patient! 9. If you ever find out any suspicious piece of information make sure to post it in the sales thread. This helps fellow webmasters "know what's up" and might thwart a scammer. Plus it always feels good to help someone else. I hope this post helps!