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Taking several precautions during a live auction can help guard against fraud. First, examine the group that is brokering the auction. If it is being done through a reputable auction house, then chances are good that the items for sale have already been screened for instances of fraud or forgery. If you are unfamiliar with the auction house, do a background check with the local better business bureau.
The most important thing to be careful of when bidding at an auction is to carefully estimate the price of goods involved. A common trap that catches many auction participants is something called the "winners curse". The winner's curse occurs when a person wins an object by bidding the highest, but exceeds the actual value of the object. This way, the person wins the object, but is cursed by overpaying for it.