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Help/Warning - Possible Scam


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3 replies to this topic

#1 of 4 OFFLINE   Brandon A

Brandon A

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Posted November 04 2005 - 07:30 AM

I am looking to sell my Onkyo TX-SR601. I posted an ad on here and several other sites. A few weeks later I received an email from someone saying they wanted to purchase it. They kept evading me when I asked where they saw the ad. The english was very poor and broken. They refused to pay via paypal and instead wanted to pay through western union.

I received the supposed email from western union today, but it is obviously a scam. It says it was processed through BidPay, but I do not believe that is the case. I have never worked through BidPay. Is this standard?:

NOTE THAT THE MONEY ORDER WILL NOT GET TO YOUR RESIDENT UNTIL SHIPMENT HAS BEEN RESOLVED AND THE TRACKING NUMBER SENT TO OUR CUSTOMER CARE UNIT FOR SHIPMENT VERIFICATION. (wuws-confirmation@accountant.com )
YOU SHOULD SEND THE ITEM TO THE BUYER'S SHIPPING INFORMATION PROVIDED ABOVE BEFORE THE NEXT 24-48 HOURS AND SEND THE TRACKING NUMBER TO OUR CUSTOMER CARE SO THAT WE CAN VERIFY THE ITEM SHIPPED OUT OR ELSE THE MONEY ORDER WILL BE STOPPED UNTIL YOU SEND THE ITEM.
This is to reduce the high rate of fraudulent act going on and to ensure that both buyers and sellers are satisfied.

The email was sent from wuws-confirmation@accountant.com

Everything points to a scam, and I certainly won't send anything until I'm sure of payment, but I was just curious if this is a common scam or if anyone knows anything else about it. Thanks.

-Brandon

#2 of 4 OFFLINE   Dah-Dee

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Posted November 04 2005 - 08:01 AM

Sounds like you need to do some reading up on Western Union/auction purchase scams here.

From the linked page:

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The following scam targets eBay sellers, who may be tricked into shipping goods to Lagos, Nigeria without any payment. First the criminal contacts the seller (usually via a new eBay account, often registered in Singapore) and offers a high price for an item on sale. He or she will request that the item to be shipped to Nigeria via a parcel service (FEDEX, DHL, UPS, EMS) and explains that the buyer will pay via "Western Union Auction Payment (Bidpay)". This is a legitimate company, but that doesn't matter in this case, because it's not actually involved.

The way the scam works is that the seller is told the money will only be released by Western Union / Bidpay when the buyer supplies a tracking number, i.e. when he has already shipped the parcel. To get the seller to ship the parcel, the criminal himself poses as Western Union, sending an email from a free webmail service to the victim using an email address which mentions Western Union or BidPay, for example "onlinebid-pay@accountant.com" or "westernunionmoneyorderpayment@banknotes.com", assuring the seller that Western Union has received payment from the buyer and will release it as soon as he submits the tracking number as proof of shipping. A seller believing this message to be sent from Western Union will lose his merchandise and the shipping costs.

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Another link on BidPay scams: http://scamvictimsun....r=asc&start=0

An eBay forums thread on BidPay scams: http://forums.ebay.p....=1128271952057

An article on BidPay scams: http://www.kirotv.co...924/detail.html

Another eBay forums thread: http://forums.ebay.i....=1120725992756

I would also recommend Googling for additional info.
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#3 of 4 OFFLINE   Brandon A

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Posted November 04 2005 - 08:08 AM

Thanks for the confirmation.

#4 of 4 OFFLINE   Bob_F

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Posted November 04 2005 - 03:37 PM

Yes, any deal involving Western Union should immediately raise a red flag.

Bob