The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type

Starred Paper

Degree Name

Information Assurance: M.S.


Information Assurance and Information Systems


Herberger School of Business

First Advisor

Abdullah Abu Hussein

Second Advisor

Lynn Collen

Third Advisor

Balasubramanian Kasi

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

Scam, Scam Triggers, Digital Infrastructure, Online business, Craigslist.


The internet and digital infrastructure play an important role in our day-to-day live, and it has also a huge impact on the organizations and how we do business transactions every day. Online business is booming in this 21st century, and there are many online platforms that enable sellers and buyers to do online transactions collectively. People can sell and purchase products that include vehicles, clothes, and shoes from anywhere and anytime. Thus, the purpose of this study is to identify and validate scam triggers using Craigslist as a case study. Craigslist is one of the websites where people can post advertising to sell and buy personal belongings online. However, with the growing number of people buying and selling, new threats and scams are created daily. Private cars are among the most significant items sold and purchased over the craigslist website. In this regard, several scammers have been drawn by the large number of vehicles being traded over craigslist. Scammers also use this forum to cheat others and exploit the vulnerable. The study identified online scam triggers including Bad key words, dealers’ posts as owners, personal email, multiple location, rogue picture and voice over IP to detect online scams that exists in craigslist. The study also found over 360 ads from craigslist based on our scam trigger. Finally, the study validated each and every one of the scam triggers and found 53.31% of our data is likelihood to be considered as a scam.


Let me start expressing gratitude toward my advisors through my starred paper research Prof. Dr. Abu Hussein, Prof. Dr. Lynn Collen, and Prof. Dr. Balasubramanian Kasi. This work would not have been managed without their bearing in any capacity whatsoever. I also need to extend my most enormous gratitude to my family for all the help you have demonstrated through this starred paper research.