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Educating yourself on Internet fraud will let you use online classifieds without fear. See the tips below to know what to look out for.

Buyers

  1. Tips to protect buyers
  2. What to watch out for/ common scams
  3. Should I send payment by Money Order?
  4. I suspect this ad is fraudulent, what should I do.
  5. I am the victim of fraud, what should I do?

Sellers

  1. Tips to protect sellers
  2. What to watch out for/ common scams
  3. I suspect that this email is from a scammer, what should I do?
  4. I have received a check for more than my boat, what should I do?
  5. I am the victim of fraud, what should I do?
  6. Learn how to sell a boat on iboats.com today!

Guidelines for Buyers

  1. Tips to protect buyers

    Get to know the seller-

    Legitimate sellers will provide detailed verifiable contact information before a transaction is processed. Verify the seller's full address, phone number, and name.

    Request pictures and information only a real seller would have-

    You should request information such as the serial number from the engine, or the Hull Identification Number. Ask for a picture of the tags with this data or other pictures not typically included in an Internet ad or even ask the seller for copies of ownership information.

    Look out for Scam Warning Signs-

    Free shipping, a really low price, international sellers, sellers who ask for payment by wire transfer, sellers that seem too eager to have you send them funds: these are all warning signs that the ad you are looking at may be a Scam. Proceed only with extreme caution.

    Use only trusted payment methods-

    iboats does not endorse any escrow or financial service. Research your options and utilize a trusted, verifiable service. Consult your banker for additional information on the best ways to transfer funds.

  2. What to watch out for/common scams

    Here are some our users should be aware of scams that are common to all Internet classifieds.

    Great deal on an item that never shows up

    Seller requires you to wire him money to ensure that you get the "good deal." Once he has your funds he disappears with your money.

    Disappearing Deposit

    Seller asks for a deposit to be sent to a company who will inspect the boat. After the boat is inspected you are to send the rest of the money. But the boat is never inspected and the fake company disappears with your money.

    Fake Escrow Services

    Seller will point customers to a fake escrow service web site. They will then use the information you input at the site to steal money from your accounts. Use only legitimate escrow services whose validity you can verify.

    Rememberů if it is too good to be true it probably is.

    I suspect this ad is fraudulent, what should I do?

  3. Should I send payment by money order?

    Credit cards or a service like Pay Pal are a better option because you can usually cancel payment in the event of fraud. When you wire transfer funds make sure you know to whom you are sending the money. You are unlikely to be able to recover the funds if a dispute or case of fraud arises. Escrow services will also provide protection but be sure to use a trusted, verifiable company. Some scams involve fake web escrow services. (see What to watch out for/ common scams)

  4. I suspect this ad is fraudulent, what should I do?

    Report the scam

    Report scammers and suspicious ads to iboats.com to prevent people from falling for scams. Send a detailed explanation with ad information, or a copy of suspicious emails to scamreport@iboats.com or contact iboats customer service at 1-800-869-1686. We will take steps to prevent scammers from accessing our service and contact others who may be at risk.

    Cease Contact

    We recommend you stop all contact with these individuals.

  5. I am the victim of fraud, what should I do?

    Report the scam to the Government & local authorities

    If you feel you have been the victim of fraud, you can access the Internet Fraud Complaint Center (IFCC) at http://www.ifccfbi.gov/ or contact the Federal Trade Commission through their web site at http://www.ftc.gov/ . You should also file a report with your local police. iboats is not a police agency and cannot help you retrieve funds if you have been a victim of fraud. iboats will however fully cooperate with any investigating organization.

    Protect others by reporting the scam to iboats

    You can prevent others from falling for the same scam by reporting scammers to iboats.com. Please send a detailed explanation with ad information, or a copy of suspicious emails to scamreport@iboats.com. We will take steps to prevent these individuals from accessing our service and contact others who may be at risk.

Guidelines for Sellers

  1. Tips to Protect Sellers

    Never send a buyer money-

    Scammers will almost always try and get you to send them money. Often they will send you a fake check for the boat that is more than you asked for. They will then try and get you to refund the difference. Never send a buyer any money.

    Look out for scam warning signs-

    International buyers, someone eager to send you a check for more than the boat is worth, and someone willing to buy a boat without properly researching the boat: these are all signs that the buyer of your boat may be someone trying to scam you. Proceed only with extreme caution.

    Verify all funds received-

    Work with your bank on any suspicious forms of payment. Make sure to notify your bank that you suspect fraud.

  2. What to watch out for/common scams

    Here are some scams that are common to all Internet classifieds.

    Counterfeit checks

    Someone (often saying they are from Africa, Nigeria, or United Arab Emirates) contacts you saying that they will pay with a Bank Money Order or certified check. These authentic-looking checks are counterfeit 100% of the time. Your bank will initially deposit the funds in your account but when they find out a few weeks/months later that it was a counterfeit, the bank will take the funds back out of your account. Sometimes these crooks even ask if they can send you more than your listing price and then have you wire the difference back to them before the check clears your bank.

  3. I suspect that this email is from a scammer, what should I do?

    Please send a detailed explanation and a copy of suspicious emails to scamreport@iboats.com. We will take steps to prevent these individuals from accessing our service and contact others who may be at risk.

  4. I have received a check for more than my asking price, what should I do?

    If a customer has sent you a check for more than the boat is worth then they are trying to scam you with fraudulent checks by asking you for a refund. Do not send them a check or wire them money. Only accept checks for the agreed upon price from trusted buyers. Work closely with your bank to verify funds received.

  5. I am the victim of fraud, what should I do?

    Report the Scam to the Government & local authorities.

    If you feel you have been the victim of fraud, you can access the Internet Fraud Complaint Center (IFCC) at http://www.ifccfbi.gov/ or contact the Federal Trade Commission through their web site at http://www.ftc.gov/ . You should also file a report with your local police. iboats is not a police agency and cannot help you retrieve funds if you have been a victim of fraud. iboats will however fully cooperate with any investigating organization.

    Protect others by reporting the scam to iboats

    You can prevent others from falling for the same scam by reporting scammers to iboats.com. Please send a detailed explanation and a copy of suspicious emails to scamreport@iboats.com. We will take steps to prevent these individuals from accessing our service and contact others who may be at risk.