I love getting Craigslist scammed during the holidays

It is my favorite time of the year. Everyone wants something for the holidays, and some are willing to try pulling scams from Craigslist to get it.

As a regular reader might know, I just acquired a Blackberry (and by the way, I still haven’t been spammed on it, hundreds of emails later), and I make it a habit of passing the old equipment off on the cheap. So, I am selling this Nokia 6682, which is pretty darn fine condition if you ask me.

And along comes “Greg”…

still selling that phone?
ship to aspen, co?


Sure am…

I do, and I will. I’d say the box is about 0.7 kilo. Will ship USPS with
delivery confirm at my expense. Any other way would be yours.


Note I converted to kilos, since “Greg” is emailing me from a yahoo.uk.co address – obviously in Aspen for the holidays – how nice is that!

Greg is busy finding phones…

which phone was yours michael?
I sent so many messages,


I reply…

Nokia 6682 with all factory includes, plus Nokia factory car charger.

Damn good customer service if you ask me.

He saw the ad, but needs a price…

how much do you want?
can you ship it tomorrow?
pay pal work for you?


More good customer service…

Here is the link to the listing:
http://denver.craigslist.org/ele/245134028.html (reposted since then)

I’ll ship tomorrow morning first thing with paypal to this address. Regular
postal should take just two days to Aspen.

Paid for!


I am depositing $140 into you paypal now.
please ship to [address removed]

thank you

greg gordon

Then the debate ensues. The guy wants immediate shipment, so what does he do? He Paypals with an eCheck (that takes several days to clear), and gives me two different shipping addresses (one to me via email, and a different one to Paypal).

I let him know the error of his ways…

I just saw in Paypal that you made payment via eCheck, and the shipping
address is different than the one you stated.

I can’t ship until that check clears, so if you are looking for a phone
immediately, you may want to reconsider. And I need confirmation on the
shipping address.

Now, the denial…


I did a direct payment via paypal with my credit card.
dont know what echeck has got to do with it.

[address removed]

please send confirmation of money received and
shipping date.


I am calling bullshit here…

Sorry, but the paypal payment was an eCheck, and your unconfirmed shipping address per paypal is actually:

[address removed]

The eCheck payment was declined by me yesterday, and you should have received confirmation from Paypal on this.




Greg can’t understand why…


I see that you have returned my money to paypal.
I am a little confused as to what is going on.
I have neve had a problem buying anything with paypal.


The problem was…

You paid with an eCheck (not credit card like you stated), and that takes minimum 3-4 days to clear.

Now, he says a bank account would do…

regarding the echeck:
dont have a clue what that is.
I use paypal often and have never had any problems
if you would rather I deposited the money straight
into a bank acount, let me know.

We could have gone on and on. After deciding I was too much of a hassle, Greg decided to take his business elsewhere, or at least that is what he said at first. Five minutes later, he thought it might be okay to let the payment wait to clear, but of course I’d already cancelled his eCheck. A few minutes after that, payment was supposedly on its way. It of course, never arrived.

I feel sorry for all the people Greg has never had problems doing transactions with.


Marge says:

Scammers like Greg are dime a dozen. They stick to the same script, more or less. It is relatively easy to spot them by the first e-mail. Most of the time they ask about “item”. Do you still have the item? I do not answer those e-mails at all. Time wasted. Ask by name of what I sell, and I will tell you. Ask for “item”, and all I do is hit delete… I have sold something on Craigslist, with shipping, only once. It wasn’t a scam, and the buyer had an e-bay account to prove his story. Lots of feedback, all positive. Still, I’ve taken the money order to my CU, and had it checked for authenticity. They called USPS, and confirmed it was real. This is the only way one can sell with shipping on Craigslist. Other than that – beware. Check e-mail headers. Verify all the information. Make sure it all clicks. And if you have just a hint that something’s afoot – cancel the whole thing.

You did really well with Greg. You’ve noticed the discrepancy in addresses. You did not go breathless over the fast “payment”. I only wish that there were a law enforcement agency that hunts down and eliminates Gregs like that, because this kind of crime is really big already, and getting bigger every year. Sadly, lots of naive folks get scammed even by more primitive attempts. Personally I know older lady, who received the “dear beneficiary” e-mail (no relation to Craigslist). I have managed in the last moment to stop her from sending a copy of her passport, together with other personal info, to receive untold millions of dollars…

Anyhow, I had a good laugh, and thank you for it.

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