Safe Exchange Zone Provides Secure Place to Meet After Online Purchases
By Arlington Police Department
Posted on December 07, 2015, December 07, 2015

After Online Purchases

As more consumers choose to do their shopping online and use Internet sites to sell personal items, local police departments noticed a trend of criminals capitalizing on the vulnerabilities of doing business with a stranger.

To combat that issue, the Arlington Police Department has created a Safe Exchange program where people can conduct face-to-face meetings for the sale or trade of items in the parking lot of the Ott Cribbs Public Safety Building (620 W. Division Street in Arlington).

Signage has been placed at the Ott Cribbs Public Safety Building, designating the parking lot as a Safe Exchange Zone. The items most commonly targeted by thieves are popular tennis shoes and electronics, such as cell phones, laptops and tablets.

"People with the bad intentions will think twice about meeting you and making a transaction at a police station," said Arlington Police Robbery Sergeant Jason Rash."For the safety of our residents and a deterrent to that criminal element, people are encouraged to take advantage of our Safe Exchange location when selling or buying items online."

Even if sellers/buyers choose not to use the Safe Exchange location, there are steps that can be taken to be safe.

  • If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Conduct research on both the product you are buying and the person selling to/buying from.
  • Never list your home address, phone number, or anything else that could be used to identify you.
  • Be wary of individuals who solicit your business without your permission.
  • There is safety in numbers. Always take someone with you to conduct a transaction.
  • Monitor your children's internet activity, don't be afraid to be nosy!
  • Never meet in out of the way locations.
  • Conduct business in a public area with people nearby and never inside of a vehicle.
  • Don't allow the other party to change the location once you arrive.
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