How odd is this: people from distant lands respond to my classified ad

I’m thinking I can get a few bux (asking $100 obo) for this minicomponent sound system that I bought a year ago for $280.

I’ve received two responses. One from Scotland and the other from Newzealand [sic]. Screenshot of the Scotland response (120KB). The NZ reply goes back to a address (India). These responses have a form-letter feel to them (with the bolded heading of my classified ad C&P from the online classified into the parentheses of teh form letter) and I don’t think there is any way I’m going to touch either one of them, but I am trying to figure out what the scam might be.

I’d certainly insist on the money order in my hands and cashed before I packaged and shipped the goods overseas. And as big and heavy as this thing is, I am sure shipping costs would be several hundred dollars - more than what I paid for the thing brand new. Sandra Smith could buy the same thing brand new for less.


Forged money orders can be cashed right away and people assume they are “as good as cash” and so send their goods. The money order then bounces a few weeks later. Another common scam is to purchase an item with a money order that’s more than the value of the good and ask to seller to send the extra cash. Again, the money order will bounce eventually, but by then your cash and item is gone. Article on foreign money order scams

Wait, how can it bounce if I go to, say, a check-cashing place, and ask for the cash? Not put it into my account?

That might work, but if they take down your info they could go after you for passing forged money orders.

I see. Not having done this very often, I didn’t realize they took your money.

To the OP: Can’t they Western Union the money? Doesn’t that still work overseas?

:smack: Your info. Took your info.

Man, remind me never to have anything to do with Nigeria.

JPEG, never have anything to do with Nigeria.
You had it comin’. :slight_smile:

I had this experience when I was trying to sell one of my guitars on Craigslist. I got several inquiries from Africa and other places. I ended up amendng my ad to state: “locals only; no shipping - must pick up in person”

I’d try that but the Washington City Paper classified are only free for the first 25 words.

You’re the seller. You don’t have to sell the stuff to anyone you don’t want to.
A guy I work with, Roundboy, is always selling his old paintball gear over a message board. He has refused to sell to people outside of the country for this very reason.

This scam’s gotten so common, it’s not funny any more.

Another common wrinkle is they tell you that they have a money order or cashiers check that they were going to use to buy a car/refrigerator/whatever but aren’t going to now, so would you mind if they sent you the check to cash and send them back the difference?

Naturally, the check or money order is bogus. Shortly after the sap ships off the item and the money, the payment is bounced and they’re now out the item and the cash.

Oh yeah. I run a regular ad for shared accomodation. (I rent rooms to students.)

I can always spot the cashier’s cheque scammers before they make their pitch:

“I am a 25-year-old lingerie model. I am coming to Vancouver to work for a major magazine and I am interested in your room for rent.” Never any questions about the house, neighborhood, or other people, of course. Riiiiiight. :dubious: