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March 06, 2017

Philly police offering safe place to complete online transactions

Buying and selling things online has never been easier, but finding a safe place to exchange items and payment is the tricky part. More than 20 areas are now available across Philadelphia.

The Philadelphia Police Department reminded residents this weekend about its Safe Exchange Zone program that provides a neutral location for parties to complete a transaction.

In all 21 of the city's police district headquarters, an area has been designated in the lobby where online buyers and sellers – on websites like Craigslist, Facebook and other social media outlets – can conduct their business.

Users do not need to make an appointment since districts are open 24 hours a day, and officers do not get involved with any transactions.

The service is available for nearly all types of transactions. However, weapon transfers are not permitted.

The department simply wants to provide a safe place and "hopes that more citizens will begin to take advantage of the program."

Safe exchange zones are becoming more common nationwide as law enforcement agencies look for ways to crack down on robberies related to online shopping.

Philly residents can find their nearest police district on the department's website.