Be aware if you are buying over the internet
Financial and internet scams have been around for some time now. Whilst these scams may not be common in the marine environment some incidents have been reported to the Hampshire Police Marine Unit.
"A number of prospective purchasers of vessels have reported to us that the boats they have seen advertised via the internet or the location where it is being advertised as being sold from do not exist" reports Sergeant Tony Birr, Hampshire Constabulary Marine Unit.
When considering the purchase of any vessel via the internet and before parting with any money or personal details, ensure you visit the location of the vessel, check the validity of the seller / website and obtain identification numbers (HIN/CIN).
Whilst no guarantee can be given that a vessel is not stolen always use www.stolenboats.org.uk to see if it has been reported stolen to a marine insurance company or police force that supplies data to this website. It is free and there is no need to register any personal details.
If you are in any doubt as to the validity of the website, seller or the vessel you are looking to buy and you have reason to believe a criminal offence is being committed, then report the matter to your local police force.