Posts in Trust & Safety

How to Purchase a Used Baby Car Seat

Consider safety first when buying a used baby car seat


Having a new baby can be expensive, even before the baby is born. You spend so much on clothing, diapers, toys, and other gear as you prepare for your little one’s arrival. Luckily, you can buy many of these items used from garage sales, thrift stores, friends with older children, and on websites like Kijiji. This is a smart way to save money. However, with some items, like car seats, there are things to keep in mind to ensure the gear is safe.

Crash History

When possible, ask about the history of the car seat. If it has ever been in a car crash or damaged in any way, it may not be safe for continued use. Most car seat manufacturers suggest throwing any seat involved in even a minor car accident away. If you buy the seat from a friend or relative, or even from someone selling it online or at a garage sale, you can ask about the history. But if you buy it from a thrift shop, there is usually no way to know about the usage history. If you see cracks or loose parts, these are good indicators of a previous accident, and a sign that you should pass on the seat.



Another important factor to consider is the age of the car seat. Manufacturers are always developing new technologies to make car seats safer and more reliable, so an older model may meet current safety standards. If the seller cannot guarantee the age, you may need to do a little extra research. In some cases, you can tell how old it is just by looking at it. Many companies put an imprint or sticker on their car seats, indicating the date it was made or the date after which you should no longer use it. Some companies even have hot lines you can call to ask about the age of a seat by providing specific model details. As a general rule, car seat manufacturers suggest no longer using a seat six years beyond the date of manufacture.


Before buying any car seat, new or used, you will want to make sure it has not been recalled. Transport Canada is a reliable source for public notices about seats with defective or dangerous parts. You can also contact the manufacturer of the car seat to see if it has been recalled at any point in its history.

Instruction Manuals

If possible, try and ask the owner if they have a user manual.  This is important for correct installation of the car seat and to ensure that all the parts you need are there.  If the original manual cannot be obtained, ensure that you can find one online or by calling the manufacturer.   For added security, there are many free clinics and paid professional car seat installation services that you can bring your car seat too.


Overall Condition

Finally, it only makes sense that you would not want to buy a car seat that is in poor condition. If it is missing parts, has broken parts, or looks worn, it is probably not going to keep your baby safe in your vehicle. It is best to buy a seat that comes with its original labels and instruction manuals so that you can familiarize yourself with the seat and how to use it. Remember, your child’s safety is the most important thing to consider when shopping for a car seat. If the condition of a seat makes you feel uncomfortable in any way, do not buy it no matter how great the deal is.


Do you have any other tips to share? Let us know in the comments below!

How to Recognize Fraud: Fake Buyers

It pays to be savvy about spotting fraud. From fake websites to fake buyers, there are plenty of opportunities to get hosed if you don’t have your wits about you. How can you tell when someone is trying to steal your money or personal information when all you are trying to do is sell some furniture (or sell your car, or house, etc.).

The first step is very nondescript reply from a sketchy email address, or a text message if you provided a phone number with your ad. The email likely has a few numbers in it, and is at a less commonly used domain, or a domain you have never heard of. The initial reply is probably something like “do you still have it“, “is this still available?“, or “I am interested in your item“. They save their usual pitch for later, as by keeping their initial reply simple, they are much harder to detect as a scam. They will usually pick a nondescript, typically English-Canadian sounding name to use (or at least, what they perceive as typical), but use poor grammar and spelling, as well as strange diction reveals that they are not the average Canadian they claim to be. If you receive a text message, they will generally ask you to email them.

Recognizing Fraud

The scam pitch: They will often talk about god or religion, use words like “blessed”, make frequent reference to how “serious” they are, or babble about their job as a missionary, in the military, for green peace, or another position that they think will lend them credibility. The capitalization will be random seeming, and the phrasing will often be strange (as if it was typed in a foreign language and run through google translate). Here is a typical follow up reply.
Thanks for the prompt reply.Well am okay for the
(insert title of your ad) i am highly interested in it,and i Don’t want you to worry abt the shipping because i have a shipping company that will be coming for the Pick up of the Advert at your residence as soon as payment has been made,The shipper will come for the immediate pick-up and make sure everything is clean up ok

I also want you to know that i will be paying via Money Order or Certified Check and it will contain both your asking price and the shipping fees via my shipping company and no pick up will be made until Money order is received and cashed by you i also want you to be serious about this so we can both finished this transaction in one mind, and here are the details needed so that i can mail the Money order without any delay,i lookup concluding the sale sooner.Thanks

TEL #:

As soon as this is received the payment will be mailed out with no further delay,Once the datas are provided to me,i can send payment immediately.I will be expecting your reply asap.? Kindly reply back with the requested question so the purchase can be completed

Best Regard,
Stay Blessed With Your Family

The reply seems odd, but since many don’t see how they could be scammed when they aren’t the ones paying, they might fall for it and continue to reply, which would lead them to a response like this one:

The payment which will be delivered to you 3 to 5 working days by next week. Kindly mark the ads sold on the site right now as well have it keep intact for me OK. And include an excess fund meant for my mover agent fee’s. As soon as you get it, take it to your bank for instantly cashed, You will deduct your selling price, And get the remaining balanced sent to my mover agent via western union money transfer or money gram store around you.

Which I will send you his information later. … I hope you do understand me clearly. I’m as well giving you $50 for the inconvenience and for the assistance. I await for your reply as soon as you got my message. I wish you a great day ahead.

Of course, they aren’t actually sending you real money. The cheque will bounce, or be found to be fake, in any case, you won’t end up with the money they send, and if you send the “mover” money, then you will lose more than you ever stood to gain.

If you are selling on any classified website, don’t agree to any transactions that are not face to face, and don’t send personal information to strangers online (except for what you need to tell people to coordinate a meet-up). Though the Kijiji community is full of friendly people who just want to save (or make) a few bucks with used goods or services, any time you are online you should keep your wits about you, and remember your own safety.

How do I report issues to the Police if I’ve been defrauded?

At Kijiji, we do our best to keep our site clean and safe for all users, however, since we don’t vet people before they use the site, transactions are between the buying and selling party. When we get reports of illegal, fraudulent, or just downright creepy activity on the site, we do our best to remove the offenders from using Kijiji further, but we can’t bring justice or put offenders in jail that way. To ensure that justice is brought about, police have to be involved.

Whether you’ve been defrauded by someone or you think you’ve discovered stolen goods, we recommend that you always contact your local police to report the incident and get a reference number. If the police take the matter further, the investigating police officer will contact us. We’ll do all we can to provide the police with any information that assists their investigation.

Can’t Kijiji report the incident to police for me?

Unfortunately not – when police file a report, they need to list a victim, so they need to deal with you directly. We can’t provide the first person account of the facts of the case and a victim statement on your behalf. However, we are happy to help the police corroborate the facts and track down the others involved when it is in our power to do so.

What to do before you go to the police

If you did receive an item but things did not work out as planned, always try contacting the seller directly one more time to resolve your problem. If everyone went into the transaction with good intentions, you may be able to resolve the issue without outside assistance.

Is it a crime?

If you report your case to the police, they’ll decide if it should be investigated as a crime or civil dispute. If the police feel that your case doesn’t involve a criminal intent by the other party, it’s possible that they may advise you to take civil action to recover your losses. This will be handled by a small claims court. For this, you’ll need to know the name and address of the other party. A police officer will be able to help you with this process.

How do I make a police report?

The simplest way is to go to your local police station or call the local police operator on a non-emergency number. In most cases, your report can be taken by telephone and followed up later.

How should the police contact Kijiji?

The police should create a ticket with us under the topic “Report > Law Enforcement (Police Only)” and we will be in touch shortly thereafter.

What evidence do I need?

The police may need these from you:

  • Essential details such as the nature, date and time of the offence, and the name and contact details of the victim and suspect(s)
  • Any email exchanges between you and other person
  • If relevant, the ad reference number or a printed copy of the ad on Kijiji.

What is flagging? Why bother reporting ads?

“Flagging” is bringing an ad or reply to an ad to the attention of our customer service team. All ads on Kijiji have a link in the top right hand corner that enables you to “report ad”, which drops down to reveal the following options when reporting:

Scam/Prohibited: intended for ads which are fraudulent or that violate Kijiji posting rules. Ads which are clearly fraud (for instance, an English Bulldog puppy for less than $200) would be an example of when this is an appropriate flag choice. It will be clear to the moderators as soon as they review that this is not a legitimate ad. Drug paraphernalia or weapons is another example of an appropriate time for this report, as those are a clear violation of the rules. If it offends you personally or you had a bad dealing with the poster this is not an appropriate time to use this reason when flagging, as this will not be clear to the moderators.

Duplicate/Spam: intended to call attention to when an individual is spamming an item or service. Spam that is clearly based out of country (for instance, a drop ship service for a given item from China) or duplicate ads posted by the same user are examples of when to use this. This is not intended for ads that you don’t think should be on Kijiji, but that do not violate any rules on posted content.

No Longer Relevant: this is intended only for ads that have been sold, or that are advertising a service, item, or event that is no longer relevant, such as concert tickets to a concert that has already occurred. This option does not bring the ad to the attention of moderators, instead, it prompts the poster to remove the ad if it is no longer available.

Miscategorized: intended for ads that are in the wrong category or location, such as a dog being posted outside of the pets category, a car posted in buy and sell, or a house located outside of Canada being posted in houses for sale in Toronto.

Type a Reason…: intended for times when a flag will need supplemental information for the violation to be clear. If the poster is performing a “bait and switch”, is selling something that has been recalled, or something that they are legally not permitted to sell, these would be appropriate times to add additional clarification when flagging an ad.

What if I accidentally flag an ad or reply? Don’t worry – flags do not cause automatic removals or bans. Since flags are reviewed by humans, if the flag does not make sense it will not result in any negative action.

Can you spot a scam? 5 Tell-tale Signs

1. Refusing to meet in person

Kijiji is set up for people to meet with locals to exchange goods and services. If someone does not want to meet in person, classified ads are not the right avenue to pursue buying and selling. If someone claims to be abroad, on an oil rig, a foreign missionary, a greenpeace worker in the arctic, etc., there is a very high likelihood it is a scam (not to say that those who actually hold these positions are scammers, but fruadsters regularly claim to have these professions because they provide a credible excuse not to meet up, or carry with them associations of good moral character, or both). The longer someone’s explanation for not being able to meet in person is, the more likely it is to be fraud. When someone asks to carry out a transaction without being face to face, just say no!

2. Telling you they will pick up/mail the item or use a third party escrow service.

Kijiji is not meant for any transactions that are not face to face, so if someone contacts you insisting they will handle the transaction from a remote location or using an escrow, mailing, or pick up service are highly likely to be fraudulent.

3. Creating a strong sense of urgency

If scammers think you’re hesitant on the sale, they create a sense of urgency so you complete the transfer right away. They may do this by telling you they’ve received a lot of interest or that someone closer wants to purchase the item, or threatening legal action against you if you do not do ask they ask. Their aim is to trick you into acting quickly, before you have a chance to carefully think through the risks, or talk to someone about it.

4. Sad stories as excuses

Fraudsters try to manipulate compassionate and well intention ed Canadians with sob stories. If they are asking you to do something that does not seem right, and distracting from the request with a sad story (usually a lengthy one), be on your guard.

Don’t assume that any mention of hardship is fraud, but if there are any other red flags coupled with over sharing details of personal, financial, or family hardship, it is quite likely that you are dealing with a fraud attempt.

5. The deal is too good to be true

If this is a once in a lifetime deal and you must act fast, before you have the chance to think about it, be on your guard! If the deal is too good to be true, it probably is!