buySAFE, The Hartford Unveil First Bonding Service to Guard Against Online Shopping Risks

November 20, 2003

buySAFE, Inc. and The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. have launched buySAFE with The Hartford to address online auction risks.

The new service combines the latest advances in technology with the reported proven, centuries-old concept of surety bonds. With online retail sales projected to hit record-highs this holiday season, buySAFE with The Hartford is designed to help make online commerce safer for shoppers, more profitable for merchants and more economically efficient for online marketplaces.

buySAFE with The Hartford enables approved sellers in online transactions to both present a credibility seal and financially protect buyers using surety bonds. buySAFE performs a rigorous qualification check on sellers to reduce problems such as fraud or misrepresentation.

The buySAFE Seal informs buyers they are dealing with a reputable, trustworthy merchant. The Hartford underwrites and issues surety bonds for a qualified seller’s online transactions. The bonds provide that The Hartford will refund the item’s sale price or replace the item in the event the bonded seller does not fulfill the terms of the sale. This protects consumers from certain online transaction risks such as fraud, misrepresentation, refund failure and seller default.

Online fraud is reportedly a major issue. Six months ago, the Federal Trade Commission and 29 state attorneys general announced “Operation Bidder Beware,” a major new crackdown on Internet auction fraud.

Of the more than 48,000 online fraud referrals that were made to state and federal agencies last year, nearly half involved auction fraud.

“The Hartford and buySAFE are breaking new ground by applying a classic surety product to solve an emerging problem,” said David Zwiener, The Hartford’s president and COO of property/casualty operations. “We’ve launched buySAFE with The Hartford on a national scale and in record time to meet a fast-growing need in a huge market. The Hartford is keenly focused on launching new programs that capitalize on markets with tremendous growth potential.”

To learn more about buySAFE with The Hartford, visit

Was this article valuable?

Here are more articles you may enjoy.