I've been listing a bunch of early stuff in the classifieds. Today I received what appears to be a scam email wanting info on the brass generator I advertised.
Here it is
Q#1. How long have you owned it?
Q#2. a) Have you owned it from new? If not how many previous owner?
Q#3.Why are you selling it?
Q#4. In your opinion, what sort of conditions it?
Q#5. Any more available photo?
Q#6. How much are you asking for it?
Q#7. Do you accept a (Pay Pal)as a mode of payment.
Kindly reply back to my Email address below (email@example.com) For more details.
I was suspicious because some of the questions were either answered in the ad or made little sense considering what I am selling.
Playing along, I answered his email and got this in reply
Thanks for the reply, i work with New Zealand Oil and Gas (NZOG) and we are presently offshore in New Zealand Taranaki Basin on kupe project, i am at sea right now so l wont be able to check the item but l need the details about the item and also l will be more happy if you can send me some pictures of it because am buying this for my Wife as a surprise gift so am willing to offer you the amount you required. I can only pay through PayPal at the moment as i don't have access to my bank account online(i don't have internet banking with it), but i have it attached to my PayPal account, and this is why i insisted on using PayPal to pay,all i will need is your PayPal email address to make the payments, and if you don't have a PayPal account yet, you can set one up at www.paypal.com it cant take you less than 3mins to do that, i will be expecting your PayPal email so l can pay. I have a pick up agent that will come for the pick up after payments has been sorted. l will be waiting for your reply asap
Seems pretty fishy . . . the bit about buying for my wife as a surprise gift. Looks to me like a form letter, actually both did.
What's my point. This person is offering to pay via PayPal. I've never seen a scheme where the purported buyer is offering to pay that way. What's the scam? Once payment is made via Paypal, isn't it irrevocable? Perhaps the offer to pay via PayPal is just a come on and he would later explain he could not pay that way and must send a check. What do you think?
What woman wouldn't be thrilled to receive the surprise gift of a carbide generator?
I agree that it has the smell of scam about it, but I don't know what the PayPal angle is about.
Did you scroll over (don't click!) the email or Paypal links that the scammer supplied to see if they actually went to the sites they said they did? Maybe the whole idea was to get you to click on his phony links.
My guess is that he's trolling for photos and accurate descriptions of saleable items. Especially ones of moderate value. He will then use this data to create a fake eBay, (or other mode of sale), offering to scam somebody.
Anytime I get emails with terrible English such as "I like item much" or as above questions, I'm always suspicious. I sometimes get emails from Sudan asking really weird questions. Best thing to do if you think it's fishy.... Delete
Quick Google search found this:
Department of Internal Affairs
the advert,i work with New Zealand Oil and Gas (NZOG) and we are presently offshore in New Zealand Taranaki Basin on kupe project.We do not have access ...
My guess is that once he has your PayPal account information, instead of paying into it, he will withdraw from it, as if you were buying something. Further, you would then have no recourse and be out the money.
Like the others suggested, I would simply delete it.
Bad link Try this for NZ scam reportings
Wow, thanks Dan, I was able to find the exact scam language on the website. It was reported to authorities in March of this year. You're quite a detective. I'd hate to have you on my trail! ;^)
"Nooo. Heez no home now. You come back some time."
IE Shut the door.
After question #1 it is a probable scam.
After question #2 it is a higher than likely scam.
After question #3 it is time to delete the e-mail
Oh, the scam is that he pays by Paypal, you send the item, he opens a claim that the item was not as advertised, Paypal refunds his money after he shows proof of mailing a package of the same weight back to you, you get a box of rocks and he gets the item.
Lots of ways to get scammed by 'buyers' (criminal bums) that ask you to use PayPal because it is safe! Well, it is same under normal purchases with eBay buyers or sellers or if you know the person is honest, yes there are some! A few T'ers I know can transact with Paypal and I am happy to do so.
But... here is one way
PayPal's Seller Protection covers the seller against claims of non-receipt and for unauthorized transactions, and applies when the transaction is listed as eligible and you ship to the address in the transaction details.
If Seller Protection doesn't apply, either because the transaction is listed as ineligible, or because the tracking requirements are not met (like in a situation of buyer pickup or delivery to an agent for the buyer), then you are at risk.
And what Chuck posted, or the scam where the buyer says they paid too much, and wants you to refund the difference to then by Western Union!
If is seems like its fishy it is!!!!
It is completely a scam. I got this in an email that I opened by accident and before I could do anything they had sent a charge thru for several
hundred dollars and pay pal paid it....Now several months later and a new pay pal and bank account later.......you get the idea
Fractured English is a hint, but there are plenty of native speakers, honest and otherwise, whose usage is wonderfully inept. For me the real red flag is the repeated references to "the item". That, by itself, means DELETE.
Answering any scam e-mail has the risk of getting your name on a sucker list, then more elaborate and convincing scams can be tailored to catch you. Anyone who thinks they can outsmart the scammers is eventually going to get stung. There is a reason there is a delete button, use it.
The TV news tonight noted that a new national scam list has been exposed.
The list identifies everyone that has been scammed, what method was most successful and what method would most likely work again.
There were also scammers that promised to get your money back from your last scam, but you had to send money first for expenses.
Totally amazed at the fractured english business. You'd think they'd wise up. I hope they never do but as long as you get one hit in say maybe 500 or 1000 it still is paying off. If it wasn't they'd be history.
Hey, G.I. You likely golfriend. She beau coup numba one. fi dolla. She numba one.
And though it wasn't a scam it was still something you were very wary of. Not wary enough, but still wary.
Mike, what on earth are you talking about? Hee Hee Hee Dave