Buying and selling online

Do you buy, sell or trade items online? It’s a good way to:

  • Rid yourself of unused items.
  • Save a few dollars buying items you do need.
  • Help the environment by reusing items that may otherwise end up in a landfill.

Remember as always, caution is key in preventing yourself from being victimized.

Tools you can use:

  • There are Buy and Sell Exchange Zones located at each of the four Winnipeg Police Service Stations Use these locations to conduct legal buy and sell transactions. Officers will not assist with transactions. This includes monitoring, negotiating and completing your exchanges; however, these areas may be subject to video monitoring. Exchanges involving weapons or illegal items are not permitted. The Winnipeg Police Service does not assume responsibility for the use of these zones. 
  • Want to know if the item you plan to buy has been reported stolen? The Canadian Police Information Centre provides an online resource you can use to search serial numbers to find out. Searches can be done on property, vehicles, bikes, boats and firearms.
Buy and Sell Exchange Zone sign

Tips for completing your transactions safely:

  • Complete your transaction during daylight hours, and in a public space.
  • Do not meet someone alone.
  • Ask for a photo of the serial number before meeting and attempt to confirm the item hasn't been reported stolen.
  • Don't provide your personal information to anyone.
  • Take screenshots of the advertisement and ID number, the sellers contact information and all communications.
  • Know who you are dealing with. Check the buyer’s/seller’s name through an online search engine.
  • Take only enough cash with you to pay for the item you are purchasing.
  • Ask about the history of the item being sold.
  • Do not provide payment until you receive the item. 
  • Do not give out your personal or banking information.
  • Use generic photos when posting an item for sale.
  • Trust your instincts! If something feels wrong it probably is.

We all have a role to play in safety & crime prevention.

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