OSWEGO — Mayor Billy Barlow announced Tuesday the city of Oswego has created two specific locations designated as “Internet Safe Exchange Locations.”
The areas are intended to provide a reliable, safe location for the public to conduct interactions and exchanges in a safe environment after purchasing an item from another individual using the internet. The two locations in the city of Oswego will be located behind the Oswego Fire Department’s eastside fire station (35 E. Cayuga St.) and on West Second Street in front of the Oswego Police Department’s police station (169 W. 2nd St.). Both areas will always be well lit, under 24-hour security camera surveillance, officials said, and are near visible areas with city personnel nearby and signage identifying the designated area. Should an issue arise during a transaction, residents are advised to dial 911 for help.
“It is not uncommon for citizens to be nervous or have concerns when meeting a stranger through the internet and then having to meet face-to-face. Creating "Safe Internet Purchase Exchange Locations" in our community is a proactive measure we wanted to take to protect our residents and help ease the concerns individuals may have when having to meet a stranger to conduct an internet- based transaction,” said Barlow. “We remain committed to protecting our citizens and encourage Oswego residents, as internet purchases and transactions continue to rise in popularity, to use these designated areas to ensure their own safety.”
Oswego City Police Department Chief Phil Cady said with the increasing popularity of on-line sales, city leaders feel it's important to provide a safe location to exchange goods.
"We’d like to remind everyone to also bring a friend or relative with you when you make an exchange and be sure to make your best effort to use these types of exchange sites every time,” Cady said.
Internet safe exchange locations have risen in popularity around the country as a tool to help facilitate face to face internet purchases between private individuals after incidents occurred nation-wide with internet transactions being linked to acts of violence.
On July 1, the Oswego County Sheriff's Office announced that a 32-year-old Fulton man had been charged with robbery and weapons possession after allegedly luring three men to a location in Scriba with the promise of selling and XBox video game console.