How Thieves Sell Stolen Property Online
Have you ever wondered whether a product you bought, or are thinking about buying, was stolen? Perhaps you bought an item from someone on craigslist.com, but you got a suspicious feeling from the seller. Maybe it was an expensive item that was on sale for an unusually low price. Or, the seller seemed to be overly willing to agree to your requests, anything just to get the item sold. If you’re gut told you that something smelled fishy, it was probably right.
Criminals and thieves use online marketplaces like eBay, Amazon.com, craigslist.com, and others to move stolen items quickly and easily. The anonymous nature of online marketplaces makes it easy to conceal the seller’s true identity and cover up the true history of the stolen property. Thieves and criminals also sell the illegally obtained items at flea markets and even on busy street corners. Basically, criminals steal articles with the intention of selling them on the web for a 100% profit.
Recipero’s Trace Services Helps Combat Crime
Now, there is an easy way to check to see if the item or property you bought was reported as stolen. A company known as Recipero is one of the largest data collection companies in the world. The company provides information services to law enforcement agencies, the United States government, insurance companies, retail business and individual buyers. Recipero operates a service known as Trace, which searches FBI Stolen Articles file on the NCIC database. The stolen articles file is a database of property that was reported to law enforcement agencies as being stolen or missing. The database, which is the largest of its kind, contains millions of product serial numbers that can be searched online free of charge. Police departments run a database search through Trace to determine if goods they recovered during a bust were ever reported as stolen. Individuals can run a quick search to determine if a product they are considering buying was taken from someone else.
How to Check for Stolen Property
To run a free lookup, do the following:
- First, visit the website at https://www.tracechecker.com/
- Click on the Sign Up link at the top of the page
- Provide the requested information in the required fields. Information includes: First Name, Last Name, Email, Password, Full Address.
- Read and agree to the Terms of Service
- Verify you are not a robot by completing the Captcha
- Click on Signup
How to Report an Article as Stolen
When you report stolen property to your local police department, make sure you request that the information me made available to the FBI Stolen Articles File on the NCIC database. As long as local law enforcement reports the information, the goods will be searchable from the Trace website.
How to Register and Protect Purchased Goods
Recipero also operates a service known as Immobilize, the National Property Register, which allows people to register their valuables and increase the likelihood they will get their stuff back in the event of a crime or disaster. In addition to recording serial numbers, you can even upload photos and receipts via the website. Examples of items that are frequently recorded include mobile phones, bicycles, laptops, jewelry, and home entertainment items. The site can even be used to record serial numbers of cash.
Registering makes the information available to police departments around the country immediately. This helps combat the sale of stolen goods and helps police and insurance companies take action.