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View Full Version : Try to scam me, will ya...


An Haddock
07-22-2015, 02:42 PM
why I oughta...


Had someone email me out of the blue asking about getting computer training for 4 kids. Awesome - I love group training sessions. but something just seemed a little off about the wording of the emails. Like when someone feeds a sentence through Google translate or something. It just didn't sound like "American" English.

On a whim, I did a Google search for the email address. Boom. Found a post on a scambaiter web site from someone who had the same experience. Their first few emails were identical to the ones I had gotten. Here's a sampling:



I want you to get back to me with the total estimate for 1 month private training for 4 people 2(Female) aged (20, and 18)and 2(Male) aged (19 and 22) for 3 weeks 1hr daily 3 times a week, they will be coming with a private transportation driver for the service.I will be expecting your reply with the total cost and your full name,address and direction for the private transport to locate your place when they are coming for the service.



want you to understand that my credit card don't work with Paypal so would like you to set up with another merchant like cpay merchant or first data merchant or flint so you can be able to charge my credit card with no problem??




I am at the hospital undergoing surgery in 4 days time i was suppose to bring my children to the location myself but due to my illness i am not capable to so. So will can only talk through text.

I want my children to learn Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook.




I will want the classes to happen now because after the surgery we are leaving the city. They will be coming with a private transportation driver for the classes so i will like you to get back to me with the total cost of 1 month training for 4 people for 1hr daily 3 times a week. Can you get back to me with the total cost of the training session. and i need a little favor from you




the favor is that i have not pay for the private transportation driver that will be bringing the 4 kids for the whole training and i can't do that myself,am at the hospital will undergo surgery in 4 days and also the driver's does not have credit card facilities to charge a card , so while charging my card i will like you to include extra $1890 for the driver's bill and you will have the $1890 send via western union to the driver and add extra $100 tip for your self as an inconvenience fee, so go ahead and add everything up. i will send it together to you with the first invoice.




Ugh. Scammers wasting my time.

EvilEmpryss
07-22-2015, 02:56 PM
Honestly, I don't know how Western Union would stay in business if it weren't for the scammers using it as their bank. As soon as I see the company name -- and especially in conjunction with an overcharge for the sender to keep "for their inconvenience" -- I shut down. Never herd of one of those that wasn't a scam.

taxguykarl
07-22-2015, 06:16 PM
I'm reminded of a PSA which asks rhetorically asks why one would fall for a pitch online that would never fly face-to-face.

minkysmom
07-22-2015, 08:32 PM
I hope people aren't dumb enough to assist them. Smh.

An Haddock
07-22-2015, 11:40 PM
I hope people aren't dumb enough to assist them. Smh.


Sadly, they are... it's just another variant of the Nigerian 419 scam.

I remember a customer from a few years ago whose family had to excise power of attorney over her uncle's finances because he had send tens of thousands of dollars to a guy in Nigeria believing he was going to get millions of dollars in return. Unfortunately he had spent so much money that he had missed multiple house payments or tax payments to the point where he was inevitably going to lose the house. I never got the follow-up but from the way she was describing it, he was losing the house no matter what happened.

Scammers are scumbags, man.

Pagan
07-23-2015, 12:29 AM
I particularly like the "1hr daily 3 times a week".

MoonCat
07-23-2015, 02:47 AM
"I will like you to..." Dead giveaway.

Also the repetition of phrases, the inability of the writer to do any of this himself (always a medical crisis), and the fact that anybody with the money to pay for all of this would certainly have a viable credit card or ability to pay in cash up front without involving you in money-handling.

They come up with new stories all the time, don't they? :rolleyes:

An Haddock
07-23-2015, 03:09 AM
I particularly like the "1hr daily 3 times a week".


The funny thing is... I had a customer who did this a couple of years ago. I did 1 hour a week with him for 4 or 5 weeks. I also had someone pay us to essentially teach their 12 year old about computer building and computer repair 1 hour a day 3 or 4 Saturdays in a row.

It still sounded too good to be true, but every once in a while I actually do get someone who wants multiple training sessions.

notalwaysright
07-23-2015, 04:40 AM
Had someone a while ago try to scam the roofing co. Email comes in asking for an estimate. After a few emails back and forth the person begrudgingly gave a phone number. We flat out insist on speaking with a person, at least once. According to the roofer, the conversation was strange, but whatever, he went and measured up the house, which was being remodeled. After we sent the estimate the scammer replied that he wanted us to roof his house. But here's the thing. He's wants us to charge the credit card a few thousand extra, and then send him the extra back in cash. That sent things to a screeching halt. I just can't even imagine a person idiotic enough to actually DO that. :confused:

Turns out, it wasn't his house, but since it was being remodeled, nobody thought anything of another work van showing up. The owner didn't live there at the time, but we did let her know the situation. She didn't really understand, and seemed suspicious of us, so much for trying to warn a person.

Seshat
07-23-2015, 01:06 PM
We flat out insist on speaking with a person, at least once.

How do you manage if the homeowner is mute or deaf? (or both)

I suppose a Skype session where the person signs at you/reads lips could work.

EvilEmpryss
07-23-2015, 03:15 PM
A meeting in-person would do it. Most people with speech impairments have already got ways in place to interact with those who don't. And there was someone on the boards here years ago who worked in the telephone relay business, where the deaf person types and the operator relays the information to the hearing person, then types the response back for the deaf person. That would work.

And sadly, I have encountered people on online roleplaying sites who have such poor language skills that scam emails look legit compared to their writing. It makes me want to weep.

notalwaysright
07-23-2015, 03:39 PM
How do you manage if the homeowner is mute or deaf? (or both)



As far as I know it hasn't happened where no one in the house could speak or hear. Many people like to actually meet one of the guys to get a feel for the company, and insist on being home. I'm sure if someone emailed and told us the situation, it would be fine. I didn't get into it in my OP, but the scammer's emails weren't very clear. But we are used to unclear emails, that's not always a red flag. That's why speaking to a person is helpful. Anyways, we needed to clarify something, and asked to call him.

It does help to have a conversation with the homeowner. We've had so many people who end up NOT getting estimates after a simple conversation. For example, if someone says they are going to choose the cheapest roofer, we might decline to bid. (after trying to tell them why cheapest up front isn't always cheapest long run)

Erinesque
07-23-2015, 07:51 PM
After my dad died in February, it was up to me to sell his iPhone, so I placed an ad on Craigslist. I got so many responses from that, and every last one of them was someone who wanted to give me extra and send me the money through "PayPal", and then send the phone to Nigeria. The catch was, of course, that I had to send the phone first, then get back with "PayPal" to give them the tracking number before the funds would become available. It got to a point where I played with them, and reported several of them to PayPal's fraud site. I eventually sold the phone on eBay successfully by saying I wouldn't ship outside the US.

Pagan
07-23-2015, 11:04 PM
The funny thing is... I had a customer who did this a couple of years ago. I did 1 hour a week with him for 4 or 5 weeks. I also had someone pay us to essentially teach their 12 year old about computer building and computer repair 1 hour a day 3 or 4 Saturdays in a row.

1 hour daily 3 times a week is not possible. It's either 1 hour a day or 3 times a week.

MoonCat
07-24-2015, 12:30 AM
For something like roofing, wouldn't you need the owner to actually sign the work order before you could start work? Any work I had to have done on my house, I was required to physically sign something before the contractor would begin work.

notalwaysright
07-24-2015, 01:17 AM
For something like roofing, wouldn't you need the owner to actually sign the work order before you could start work? Any work I had to have done on my house, I was required to physically sign something before the contractor would begin work.

Oh, well they could send the proposal back snail mail, or email (scan and send). One of the guys could go pick it up, which we liked because then we could bring out color samples at the same time. Honestly, we very rarely had any problem making contact with a person. Most people want to talk with us, they are going to be spending thousands of dollars, after all. If they want impersonal, they should go with one of the large companies. They don't give a crap as long as they get the money.

EvilEmpryss
07-24-2015, 02:38 AM
For something like roofing, wouldn't you need the owner to actually sign the work order before you could start work? .
I was getting estimates for roof repair a few years back, and not one company asked me to prove I was the homeowner.

I guess that it's one of those "who else would want to pay to put a new roof on a house?", but now that I know about the scam, I'm not sure how I'd prove it short of pulling out my purchase paperwork.

Jetfire
07-24-2015, 01:16 PM
I was getting estimates for roof repair a few years back, and not one company asked me to prove I was the homeowner.

I guess that it's one of those "who else would want to pay to put a new roof on a house?", but now that I know about the scam, I'm not sure how I'd prove it short of pulling out my purchase paperwork.

A bill in your name to that address (paper or ebill) would probably be enough. If the place has a history of being a rental property (or if the contractor is getting a renter vibe instead of a scammer vibe) you might need more proof, but I suspect that should be enough most of the time.

ZumZum
07-24-2015, 02:15 PM
Similar scam was attempted on me years ago. I was a restaurant manager. Guy calls in using TTY (not sure if he was really deaf).
Claimed to be having a party soon, but he was in the hospital. Wanted to order about $1000 worth of one item on our menu. This after asking for things we don't have.

Then he says he is hiring a delivery truck to pick up the food. Can we charge his card an extra $750 for the delivery charge and give it to the driver?

Oh yeah, charge an additional $150 as a tip for me (for being oh so kind).

Then way the TTY operator was delivering his messages, I could tell she was cringing, but couldn't say anything.

I tried to get the credit card number so I could alert the CC company, but he wouldn't give it to me until I the day of the sale. I just told him I needed to get authorization. He then gave me a fake phone number and ended the call abruptly.

An Haddock
07-24-2015, 02:59 PM
For your amusement, here's my latest couple of email exchanges:


I'm sure he'll understand. Just give me your address and we'll be happy to provide transportation for free.

By the way - how did you hear about our company? Was it from the predator watchlist site?



i have negotiated with the driver and i don't want to disappoint him because the driver has been texting me about it. so please can you do this for me......God bless

Thanks,

Cole.




Since you're in the hospital, we won't charge you for the transportation service. We have a business van with boarded-up windows we use to transport children to our facility. Just give me your address and we can come pick them up so you will save yourself $1800.

Isn't that great!?




the favor is that i have not pay for the private transportation driver that will be bringing the 4 kids for the whole training and i can't do that myself,am at the hospital will undergo surgery in 4 days and also the driver's does not have credit card facilities to charge a card , so while charging my card i will like you to include extra $1890 for the driver's bill and you will have the $1890 send via western union to the driver and add extra $100 tip for your self as an inconvenience fee, so go ahead and add everything up.

notalwaysright
07-24-2015, 04:07 PM
I was getting estimates for roof repair a few years back, and not one company asked me to prove I was the homeowner.


Nobody needs to sign anything for us to just do an estimate. :) If they want us to do the work, that's when we get back the signed estimate. Can't remember the legal wording, but it doesn't have to be the owner, it can be someone authorized/responsible. We don't normally check who is the legal owner! We did that one time, because of the scammer.

EvilEmpryss
07-25-2015, 03:38 AM
Boy, I love it when people throw the "god bless" crap in the scam, like that's going to make me less suspicious.

Some of the worst crimes in history have been committed by religious people, and they weren't even doing it for religion, necessarily.

To paraphrase Inigo Montoya but with the same heartfelt lack of interest, keep your 'god bless'.