The Dark Side of Craigslist: 7 Tips to Stay Safe!

I have furnished my home over the years from Craigslist.  I have bought furniture, a couple of cars, kitchenware, an elf-on-a-shelf, and even a martial arts leg stretcher from there.

CraigsList is a free classified ad website where you can get community news, lessons, jobs, and gigs.  You can buy and sell anything under the sun as well. How it works is you place or answer an ad on there, meet up with the buyer/seller, and exchange goods for money or barter.

CL Warning

Craigslist has been running for 20 years, and while it is a great place to do these things, we need to be careful because like everywhere on and offline, there are the rare but present predators out there.

When you deal with anyone from Craiglist or any online forum, it pays to take some precautions before you meet in person.

1. Listen to your intuition.  If you have a bad feeling, feel nervous, like something is off, etc, this is your intuition warning you.  HEED THAT WARNING and cancel.   It’s better to leave that great deal on the table than to risk getting victimized.

2. Meet in a public place where there will be people active in the immediate area.  Predators want easy victims, and they want the best chance of getting away with a crime.  This is less likely when there are people around who will look (and be able to describe him) if he tries something.

3. Bring a friend with you.  You are less attractive as a victim if you bring someone with you.

4. Be especially careful when buying or selling high value items.  Make these kinds of trades at the police station.  If they refuse to meet there, you have a clue that they may not be on the up and up.

5. Google any information you have on them before you go.  Google their name, their e-mail, their phone number.  See what you can see.

6. If you get a funny feeling (not haha funny) that something is off at any time before or during your transaction, you have every right to cancel the meeting and be on your way.

7. Keep your information safe- only give out the information they need to do the transaction.  They don’t need your home address, banking info, etc.  Be sure your social media is set to private, etc.

Craigslist is an awesome place to buy and sell products and services, and for some, find love and express themselves.  Take these precautions and stay safe!

Also check out Craigslist’s safety page:

The following resources came from that page:

Learn how to be safe: Empowered teaches personal awareness, situational awareness, predator recognition/deterring, and some quick, efficient physical techniques meant to help you getaway if you need to.

Be safe. Be Strong. Be EMPOWERED!