I posted earlier about how quickly my laptop “sold” on eBay. The old mantra of “if it looks too good to be true” was most definitely correct in this case. The mere fact that it sold within 2 hours was reason enough to get skeptical, but then the email came from the “buyer”
I've made out my payment to you for this item purchase (6817122948),So check your mail if u've heared from PAYPAL,& Get back to me immediately if you receive a confirmation mail from PAYPAL,You can ship it out & Don`t forget to send the shipment tracking # to Paypal at(email@example.com) for verification & Your account will be credited immediately.Hope to hear from you soon. Sincerely. Thanks Mr Timi Anderson
Oh I see…I’ll get the funds after I provide a tracking number. Gotcha…I’ll be right on that sir.
The “confirmation” email I received from “PayPal” was equally as ridiculous, the most notable thing being that it didn’t originate from an @paypal.com address (it came from firstname.lastname@example.org) and the grammar/spelling was laughable at best. I also noticed that he had immediately deleted his eBay account, which interestingly enough he had just created 2 days prior. I was able to recoup the listing fees and relist the item immediately due to the fact he was no longer a registered user. One bullet dodged, round 2 began.
Figuring it was just a fluke occurrence, I trodded forward with the relisting…lo and behold the laptop sold again within just a couple of hours. Having been through this just a day earlier I already figured it was bogus…just to see what kind of ridiculous email I’d receive this time I contacted the “buyer” asking for payment and shipping address. Here’s the message I received:
Compliment of the season to you. I am Tessa Burton from Califonia USA, but Presently i working as an ambassador in the usa embassy in Holland. I saw your item below and i will like to buy it for my friend who is an ambassador presently working in Nigeria. He will will be doing is birthday next week. Dont worry about the shippment to Nigeria okay? i will send you my fedex account number so that you can ship the item without paying any shipment fee. I would have prefer to send you a cheque but simply because i want you to ship the item ASAP, i will be sending you the payment via Western Union Money Order or western union money transfer. So kindly e-mail me your full name and address so that i can send you the payment immediately. thanks, so mail me now because its urgent.
Ahh jeez, not this whole Nigeria crap again. It turns out that eBay has been getting hit hard by this lately though. Wow, things have really changed around there lately…I’ve sold computers on eBay in the past and had absolutely no issues whatsoever. I feel terrible for the people who actually fall for this crap though…I guess there’s one born every minute.
So I’ve relisted for a 3rd time, this time limiting bidding to buyers in the US only, and with an established buying record. Fingers are crossed.
Wed, Nov 2 2005 9:24 PM