Monday, April 16, 2018

Safe exchange zones

Marketplaces aren't just tools to bring potential transactors together, they can also seek to make transactions (physically) safe.  Criminals can lurk among Craigslist buyers and sellers, and so there's been a growth of "safe exchange zones".

See e.g. this recent story from New Jersey, where the police department set up a safe exchange zone following a robbery/murder:
"Passaic Mayor Hector Lora says that his town installed the zones inside and outside of the police station after a series of robberies and scams related to online sales.

“The biggest difference that it makes is that it provides a safe area for individuals to make these transactions and be able to make it back home,” Lora says.

“We have 24 hour surveillance, 24 hour staffing, and it's round the clock,” says Deputy Chief Christopher Storzillo.

"Lora says that he hopes that other towns follow suit and add their own safe exchange zones.

"But until other towns have these zones, officials urge anyone who is buying or selling items online to meet in a public, well-lit place and to call authorities if anything seems suspicious."

It turns out that safe exchange zones are a thing, here are some databases to help locate one near you:

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