While most individuals who use ServiceHorn have success with buying, selling, renting or connecting with others, it is possible that people will attempt to scam or defraud our users. Remember that ServiceHorn is a local service classifieds web site and while we are committed to creating a user-friendly environment, where our users can post and reply to ads and other messages freely and without concern, profiles and service requests may not always be reviewed before they go live on the site. What follows are a number of tips and techniques you should keep in mind to protect yourself and your privacy online, whether you are using our site or any other site on the Internet. This list is not exhaustive and you should not use it as a substitute for your own common sense. As always, the best protection is to use good judgment and trust your instincts. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Posting a Request or Responding to a Service Provider
- Online ads help us find all kinds of different goods and services easily and quickly. It is important to remember that whether you are responding to a rental ad, a job posting, "for sale" ad or service profile, you have never met the person behind the ad before. Use caution.
- Do not wire money, or send a check, to a person you have never met.
- Do not give out personal information about yourself, such as your social security number, social insurance number or credit card number.
- Meet people in a public place.
- Check to see if any of your friends or connections have used the service provider in the past. Share a service profile within your social networks to solicit referrals for the service provider.
Posting a Service Profile
- Online advertising allows us to quickly and effectively reach as many people as possible that are interested in what we are selling or offering. It is important to remember that you may not know the people responding to your ad, so be careful.
- Talk to people on the phone before giving them information, like your address, and trust your instincts.
- Meet people in a public place and if you have never met them before, don’t meet them alone.
- Share your Service Profile with as many of your contacts as possible and ask them to refer you on ServiceHorn to build your local reputation.
Scams and Fraud
No matter where we are or what we are doing, a handful of people can make it difficult for everyone. This is true in the online advertising area as well. Use the same common sense you would use in the real world when reading an ad. If it is too good to be true, it is a scam. Please read about common online scam types to educate yourself.
Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre or 888-495-8501 (toll-free)
Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)
Federal Trade Commission
FBI - Homepage
Internet Fraud Complaint Center
FTC Video: How to report scams to the FTC
FTC complaint form and hotline: 877-FTC-HELP (877-382-4357)
Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3)
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
Polaris Project | Combating Human Trafficking and Modern-day Slavery