With the convenience that the internet brings, it’s now so normal for people to do just about anything online. Friends, relatives, lovers, fans, enthusiasts, or just about anyone uses the internet to communicate. Communication entails so many things, from getting a message to a loved one or advertising a product to the masses. Many also play games, share ideas, or build relationships with other individuals from across the globe. Apart from providing several hi-tech ways for people to communicate, the internet is also a place where one can access infinite information about anything. In addition to this, the net also provides people a venue where they can promote goods and services, as well as buy or sell them.
Making business transactions online can be quite risky for many reasons. For one, the net can make it easier for hackers and other cyber criminals to obtain a person’s private information. Secondly, not all online merchants are honest. Many are cunning thieves that mask themselves as responsible business people. Therefore, people should always exercise caution when using online services.
One of the most prevalent crimes online is dealing stolen goods. Many consumers have complained of encountering problems because they have bought goods that have been reported as missing or stolen. Because of this, most online services that support buyers and sellers, such as eBay and Amazon, are very strict when it comes to security. They do not tolerate the business of trading stolen or illegal products. However, a few sly thieves always seem to get through undetected. So, there are still quite a few who get into legal problems for purchasing or selling stolen or illegal items. If you are a victim, there are several things that you can do to protect yourself and other honest online businessmen and consumers.
Report Stolen Products
When you see an item or a list of items that you believe are stolen goods, take note of the web address or online auction site used. Make sure to obtain other vital information, such as the seller’s user ID, location of user, the specific item number, description of the item, and other useful details. Save the URL where the listing is posted, making sure to take note of the date. Then, print out the page and bring this with you to the nearest police station.
Once in the police station, go to the cybercrime unit. Talk to a police officer or a detective there. Explain what you’ve seen, and give him the print out. The detective will most likely use an online law enforcement form to report the theft to the concerned website. You can also get his help to communicate with the website’s customer support center. After reporting the possible theft online, get the case number so that you can easily follow it up.
Retrieve Stolen Property
Online auction sites generally provide all helpful details once they receive a complaint as regards stolen products sold on their websites. They will release info on a seller’s past and present product listings so that it’s easier for a victim and the authorities to track down a thief and recover the stolen goods. Once the thief is identified, it also becomes easier for the victim to file a suit against the offender.
Use Online Lost-and-Found Sites
There are online websites that provide help and information to those who have lost things through robbery or other methods. In such sites, you can report stolen items or check if an online item that you’re interested in is pilfered or not. These sites are very helpful, particularly if you are in the habit of buying second-hand things.
Claire Duvall regularly writes for several personal injury lawyers. Duvall also writes for criminal attorneys, such as those at Elliot Savitz Law, who can provide expert legal advice and assistance to those in need.