We work hard to protect Banjo Hangout users from scams, but you need to use common sense as well. Here are a few quick pointers--follow them and you should stay safe.

For Buyers

  • Never Wire Funds (e.g. Western Union)--anyone who requests this form of payment is a scammer.
  • Use Safe Payment Methods--Paypal or Escrow.com keep you safe, so we recommend using those.
  • Check the Homepage of the seller before you send money. Scammers are often caught and locked quickly. If the seller's account is locked do not send money.
  • Report Suspicious Activity--if the seller contacts you through our message system, the message will have a link at the bottom for you to report it as a scam. Clicking this locks their account immediately!
  • Use Common Sense--if an price seems too good to be true, or seems fishy, chances are it is. Ask for additional information (more photos, seller's phone number so you can talk to them, etc).
  • Deal in Person Whenever Possible--obviously this is the safest way to complete a transaction.

For Sellers

  • Do Not Post Your Email Address in your classified ad. This forces buyers to create an account before contacting you through our message system, which stops many scammers and allows us to easily lock out any scammer dumb enough to register and send a message through our system.
  • Make Sure Payment Clears--don't put your precious banjo in the mail until you know for sure the money is in your hands. (Your bank may cash the check, but you should wait until it clears.)
  • Check the Homepage of the buyer. If their account is locked, they've been labelled as a scammer.
  • Report Suspicious Activity--if a scammer contacts you through our message system, the message will have a link at the bottom for you to report it as a scam. Clicking this locks their account immediately!
  • Use Common Sense--if an offer seems too good to be true, or seems fishy, chances are it is. When in doubt, ask a few friends for advice (you can even inquire on the forum)!



Read an actual email received from a member in regards to a classified ad they posted. If you receive an email like this, please report it to me by forwarding it to eric@banjohangout.org.

Read more on avoiding common check fraud scams

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