Honors Scholars Class Project: You Don't Know Auctions

Every year, Internet auction fraud costs American consumers approximately $5 million. The most prevalent complaints made by consumers to the Federal Trade Commission involve identity theft, misrepresented merchandise, and undelivered goods. In response to this growing problem, the honors scholars class of 2003 collaborated with the City of Chicago's Department of Consumer Services and AT&T. The students created "You Don't Know Auctions!," a website aimed at educating consumers about the common types of online auction fraud, how to avoid becoming a victim, and how to remedy fraud if you do become a victim. The site has commentary that teaches visitors everything from the types of auctions to what to do if the buyer or seller doesn't live up to their end of the bargain. When visitors feel like they've read enough, they can test their knowledge at the online auction quiz game, "The Auction Watchdog Challenge."

In the News

Kate Schott, Law students warn: You don't know online auctions,  Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, February 4, 2003, at 1.

Christine Tatum, Site fights fraud found on Internet auctions, Chicago Tribune, February 15, 2003, Business sec., at 1.

Site warns its visitors: Beware of Web auctions, Chicago Tribune, June 1, 2003, sec. 4, at 2.

Christinen Willard, E-buyers beware: Students watch out for fraud, National Jurist.

News Segment, Auction Action, ABC-7 News.