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Staying Safe Online

We recommend a few simple practices to staying safe whilst using TBNS and staying safe online in general.

Your Password

  • Use a unique password for your TBNS account. Don't re-use a password you use elsewhere.
  • Create a password that is 10 characters or more, generally, the longer it is the harder it is to guess.
  • Do not use common phrases or words in your password, they are too easy to figure out.
  • Do not use personal details such as your name, pet's name or date of birth.
  • Use a unique password for each website you visit. Consider using password management software to help you keep track.
  • Never give out your password to anyone.

Never give out your password

We will never contact you and ask you for your password, ever. You will find that most businesses will never contact you and ask for your password either. Be very cautious about ones that do.

Make sure you are on the secure TBNS website

We use a secure connection for the entire website, so any data you transfer is securely encrypted during your visit.

When you visit our website make sure that the address in the url bar of your browser shows as the base domain.

Also check that there is a padlock in the browser bar to show that you are on a secure connection. If there is no padlock, retype the address, making sure it begins with https:// (note the 's' after http).

When doing any online shopping or entering your personal details into any online forms, think twice before giving your information to a site that does not have the padlock to show that your data is secure.

Keep your virus software and browser up-to-date

By keeping your browser and software up-to-date you are making sure that any bugs or vulnerabilities are patched and the latest threats to your system can be detected or blocked.

Staying safe as a seller

  1. Limit the information you put in your listings
    When you place a listing on TBNS, be aware that all listings can be indexed by search engines and will be widely available. We recommend that you do not put any personal details in the comments or body of your listing, including your name, phone number, email address and physical address (except perhaps when you want to meet at a university or other public place). Your email address remains private and is only used to send you buyer enquiries.
  2. Use a screen name or nickname for your profile and listings.
  3. Communicating with a buyer
    If the buyer has put their phone number in the enquiry, that's good. You can contact them by phone and speak to a real person. Be careful about giving out your personal address over the phone.
    If the buyer only has an email address, you can choose to respond from a free email account, such as GMail, until you are more comfortable with the buyer.
  4. Meeting with a buyer
    If you have chosen to meet the buyer personally, it is a good idea to arrange to meet somewhere other than your personal residence. Arrange to meet at your university or other public place to do the transaction.
  5. If you are having trouble with a buyer, or are concerned about an enquiry, please email us at and let us know.
  6. Beware of scammers (see below).

Staying safe as a buyer

While most, if not all, our sellers are honest, it is best to be wary when dealing with someone you don't know.

  1. When making an enquiry
    When you make the initial enquiry, it's best to either call them if they have given their number, or put your phone number in the message and ask them to contact you by phone. This means that you can talk to a real person straight away.
  2. Meeting a seller
    If you have decided to meet the seller in person to purchase the item, it's best to arrange to meet at somewhere other than your place of residence. Meet at your university or other public place.

Beware of scams

Unfortunately, scammers and scams are now commonplace on the internet, and we are not immune. Be cautious of all messages you receive and if you are not sure, you can perform a few basic checks to see if it is an obvious scam. Feel free to forward any messages to us at and we'll take a look.

  1. Read the content of the email or message
    If you think the message may be a scam, copy part of the message and enter it into a search engine. Often scammers will use the same message repeatedly on different sites and you may get results in your search where others have had the same message.
  2. Check the email address
    If you are a bit concerned about a message, check if the email address is from a reputable source, such as an Australian university. You should still check the headers of the email to make sure it is actually originating from the displayed address.
  3. If the email address looks odd
    Type the email address into a search engine and see what the results show. Again, scammers tend to re-use email addresses on various sites.
  4. Overseas orders
    Beware of messages that ask you to supply a number of items and ship them to an overseas address. Often these emails are associated with an official looking email signature from an educational institution.

Resources to help you stay safe online

The following resources have some very useful information about staying safe online.

Remember, once on the internet, forever on the internet.