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  1. #1

    Classified Ad Scam

    I posted a furniture ad in local classifieds. Last night I received this very weird call from someone identifying himself as an "operator" who said he had a relay call for me. The way this worked, he said, was that whenever I talked, I was supposed to say "go ahead" and he would type what I said. The other party would type their response. The operator would say "Operator" and read their response. It was really bizarre. After the first question, I told the operator I did not want to say anymore unless he explained further who he was with, what this was about, etc. He then said he wasn't allowed to engage in conversation with me, and he gave me a customer service number to check (which later did not check out). Before the end of the phone call I did learn that the person was inquiring about an item in my classified ad, and they gave me an email address and asked me to send details. So I did email the person, not using my regular email account. I've copied their response below. I do not intend to have any further communication with this party.

    I can't quite figure out the angle. Except that they want to send me a money order for more than I am asking for the table and then they want me to send the difference back to them. The whole thing is so weird.

    Here is the response:
    Thu, 20 Oct 2005 22:07:22 -0700 (PDT)
    ?*"susan jones" **
    Your inquiry !!!!!!!
    Thanks very much for your email, it was really nice speaking with you on the relay call, you have to bear with me as I have hearing problems, hence the use of the relay call.* The reason I am sending you this email is to make final reconfirmation of the coffee table and also to let you know that payment will be by certified USPS (United States Postal Servce) Money Order. In view of this I need you to email me any information that may be required to send the Money Order, as I do not want to send the Money Order to a wrong location lest they gets into the wrong hands.
    Regarding the shipping, I have a company that takes care of the pick up of my consignments for me and ship to my destination anywhere in the U.S.A, you do not worry about shipping, the company will send down a representative to arrange the sales documentation and the pick up from your end for onward transfer to my destination.
    I also want to alert you on the fact that you will be recieving an overdraft Money Order, which will cover the money for the pickup (pickup and shipping to the final destination) as well as the money to be paid to the company that will take care of the pickup and the documentation with you.* So please, as soon as you receive the Money Order, go and cash them immediately, deduct the money that accrues to you, and send the balance to the Head Office of the company that handles the shipment in London United Kingdom via the nearest Western Union agent in your area.* Deduct the Western Union charges from the balance and send the remaining to London immediately .
    The Money Order will be in your name to make it easier for you to receive payment, deduct your money* and send the balance via Western Union as regards my earlier direction, please reconfirm your details one more time.
    I will give you the details of the company that you will send the balance of the money to in London once I get a reply and agreement that you will send the money to London via Western Union money trnasfer immediately you cash the Money Order.
    Once the money is received by the agent in London , the shipping agent will contact you immediately to arrange the documentation as well as the pick up immediately.* So in view of the above,* here are some of the details I will need* for final issuance of the USPS Money Order to you.
    (1)* Full Name
    (2)* Mailing address, no p.o.box* please
    (3)* your direct telephone number
    (4)* acceptance of my offer
    Once you get back to me with all the above, the Money Order will be issued out immediately and it will be sent to you .
    Hope to hear from you immediately.
    N.B.* : I will pay you extra $100 to reserve*the coffee table*for me.pls i need the price.and get back to me immdatly.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    Some call it "fools gold".
    You receive the money order, deduct your price, and send the scammer the remaining money along with your item.
    The money order reject, your furniture is gone and you face charges with the fraudulent money order or check.
    The "go ahead" with the relay call sounds suspicious to me as transactions via the phone can be done that way, like say you want to buy something via the phone some companies identify you, then for the contract they record you saying "go ahead" or "yes". They must first identify you in person or by writing, before a transaction can be done via phone like this, for example your insurance broker can do such transactions if you just bought a new diamond ring in Vegas and want to add it to your insurance before travelling back to your home. Other transactions can also be done like this like extending a loan etc. Be careful if you suspect someone got hold of your account details, social security number or other documents.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    SCAM SCAM SCAM come on people be smart and wake up

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    It Is Called Money Laundering!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    I'm glad I found this site. Earlier this week we posted some baby items on our local classifieds. No reply till today. One of those "operators" relaying a call. My boyfriend answered the phone first. He was doing something so wasn't paying much attention. He did give our home address and number but never said go ahead or yes but then got frustrated and gave me the phone. So I started talking and the "operator" explained who she was and what she was doing. So I ended up just giving her my po box address and then someone interrupted giving me his name, where he worked and id number saying he believes this service is being abused by the caller and believes it's fraudulant. So I was lucky cause I was confused and really trying to sell my things but nothing really got through.
    Now after reading this I understand all those emails I get for my dog from people in the UK. Very rude and blunt. They just wanted my address so they can send a money order and ship my dog! never replied to those though.
    What is it with everyone one of these classified scams coming from the UK? Because my "operator" had an english accent..... anyway to turn them in?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    Quote Originally Posted by Player
    It Is Called Money Laundering!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    No, actually it isn't. Money laundering involves the process of one or a series of financial transactions to hide/disguise the source/desination of money. This is just a common fraudulent check scam (albiet involving a money order).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    OMG!!!!! This just happened to us. We put a ad in our local paper and the other day we got a relay call about 5:30 in the morning. This person was interested in our boat (calling from New Zealand) and wanted to see a picture. We sent it her one thru e-mail and she responded back.
    Here was her first response:

    From : Nancy Happy Family
    Sent : Sunday, January 8, 2006 12:07 PM
    Subject : Re: 1987 18' BAYLINER BASS STRYKER
    Thank you for your reply, I really appreciate your responce to my interest in buying your 1987 bass boat for sale.Like i said earlier am based in New Zealand okay.I would like to know the least price at which you would sell it to me.Am assuring you that I will be the new owner as I'ld like you to consider it sold......Concerning the shipping,it will be taking care of by me so you need not to bother about that okay.My private shipper whom has been working with me for over 5 years now,would be coming
    over to your location for the pick up......Let me know if this arrangement suites you inorder for payment to be made. Pls get back to me immediately, Nancy Biggs

    We responded back to her (not realizing we were being scamed)

    Hello. A man is suppose to recontact me in early February to purchase the boat for $1100 (US). If you would like to purchase it for that price then we can proceed to finalize transaction. Thank you

    She wrote back again: Thanks for the pictures.I'm okay with the price $1100 and condition as stated by you as am highly interested this purchase. I'll instruct my Client in the States,to issue out a Certified Cashier's Check tagged $3,150, drawn from a US bank in your name.Having it in mind that business is based on trust,When you receive the check, cash it, deduct the amount due for the purchase, and send the remaining funds to my shipping Agent via Western Union Money Transfer,whom will then come over to your location for the pick up and take care of all shipping issues. If you are alright with this arrangement, provide me the following info:
    1)Name as to be written on check
    2)Full address to where the check will be mailed out to
    3)Phone # so as to contact you

    Get back to me asap so we can seal this transaction.

    Nancy Biggs.

    We emailed her back: I regret too inform you that due too all the scandles and fraudulant scams in the news lately I wont act as a middle man. However I will except cash, verifiable bank check (cashiers check), or money order from your shipping agent upon pick-up. I apoligize for being sceptical or un-trusting but I feel I must protect my own interests. Please contact me back if this is possible and we can go from there. I can meet with your shipping agent most anytime with 1 hours notice. Thanks.

    I told my husband this woman is trying to SCAM us :mad:

    As of today Friday January 13, we have had no resposes at all from this woman. Remember the name ([email protected])

    I think we have learned a little here. No matter how bad you want to sell something make sure you double check things before giving any information out. I'm glad we didn't give her any.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    OH MY GAWD.....

    You know what... I got a relay call from "Nancy Biggs" yesterday...

    She wanted info about our boat...

    My father sent her info and everything.... I guess we just tear up the money order when it comes?

    I felt a little funny about it... I mean why would someone ship a boat out of country like that and be so adament about wanting it NOW?

    That's when I "googled" her... and found my way here!

    kconder64-- she sent us the EXACT e-mail (except with different prices)...

    I cannot believe I fell for this... and even my parents... I am currently trying to get ahold of my father to tell him... I just hope he will believe me!


  9. #9

    Re: Classified Ad Scam

    I am glad I searched this before it got that bad.

    "Thanks for your prompt response.I really appreciate your responce to my interest in buying your yamaha organ for sale.Like i said earlier am based in Ontario Canada okay.I would like to know the least price at which you would sell it to me.Am assuring you that I will be the new owner as I'ld like you to consider it sold......Concerning the shipping,it will be taking care of by me so you need not to bother about that okay.My private shipper whom has been working with me for over 5 years now,would be coming over to your location for the pick up......Let me know if this arrangement suites you inorder for payment to be made.
    Pls get
    back to me immediately,

    Nancy Biggs.

    NB---Would like to see a recent picture if available ?"

    It is amazing the similarities!

    oh well, still have an organ for sale....

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