Mohamed Abdul-Aziz sadly lost his life after arranging to buy a laptop on the online marketplace.
Last week, 24-year-old engineering student Mohamed Abdel Aziz left his apartment to purchase a used laptop he found on the online marketplace OLX. Abdel Aziz had arranged to purchase the laptop for EGP 25,000, around ten thousand less than the laptop's market worth. The meeting took place in Al Nozha area of Heliopolis, however when Abdel Aziz showed up to meet the seller, he was violently attacked by three men and killed after being robbed.
Two suspects, who have confessed to the crime, have been arrested pending the investigation.
The murder only exacerbates the controversy surrounding online shopping websites in Egypt, where these kinds of incidents are becoming commonplace. OLX's registration process necessary to advertise a product is very simple. It requires a verified phone number, a picture of the product and basic information about the seller including his or her phone number. While the phone number is verified, once the seller connects with a buyer either through phone or email there is no observation by a site monitor. The site does however offer its users a set of safety tips on how to take precautions when interacting with buyers or sellers.
A woman who had previously attempted to sell her used wedding dress on the site complained of harassing calls after she had posted her number. Many others have complained about receiving fake products as well as fraud.
Customers have been complaining about the security measures OLX has in place to ensure the safety of its clients and have asked for suggestions in order to provide a safer rendezvous for these encounters. One such suggestion was for OLX to provide safe places for sellers and buyers to meet or to open up their offices for the sales.
OLX has announced in an official statement following the incident that they will be studying suggestions given by the site's users and oversee changes in the selling-buying process to ensure the safety of their subscribers.