Being Alert to Classified Ad Scams 2020

By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

The following email was forwarded to me by the Planet Chiropractic office, originating from a chiropractor via email.

URGENT: Multiple scammers!
I’ve had two scam attempts on my Chiropractic Equipment For Sale ads. Richard Walls ([email protected] and also [email protected]) and now Cynthia Fenwick are their email aliases. This is the email they end up sending. Richard sent me a check from a law firm for $4000 more than my asking price. He wanted me to deposit it and then send the extra to the ‘mover’ through Zelle/Paypal.

This scam works by getting the seller (in this case the doctor) to cash the check and then wire the money back to the mover before the check is found to be fraudulent. Wire transfers like Zelle cannot be revoked whereas the cashing of the check can.

Now Cynthia sent me the exact same email. Please alert others who’ve posted.

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This is what the scammers send via email. The poor spelling has been left unchanged, this is already a good sign of a scam attempt.

Thanks for the information, i will need your honest and trust to end up this transaction. I will like to know if i can trust you with my money, … please i want you to remove the item from sales list i will get back to you with the tracking # from UPS so that you will know when to expect it.I include the mover funds along with your payment cos they need to pick some valuable item for me in your area. We are New on this site and you are the first person to know from this Site, We are a very good Christian family and GOD Fearing , all we believe in is TRUST and Loyalty .. So when you receive the check get your item fee and the rest goes to the mover guy so that it will be delivered directly to my house and LET ME KNOW IF I CAN trust you with this transaction.
Kindly get the post removed and get back to me asap.

This is by far the most popular classified ads scam I’ve seen on the internet over the past 20 years. They go after every site they can, including this site and craigslist.

When selling, basic common sense rules apply. If it seems to good to be true, it likely is. Chiropractors buying equipment would most likely purchase items using an office check from a business that can be verified. Google maps is helpful here.

When students are purchasing items, hopefully they identify themselves as such. I like to reply to students and get info on where they are attending school, when they expect to graduate, where they plan to practice, etc.

Chiropractors that don’t have an office address, such as someone starting a practice or opening a new location, offer an opportunity for getting more information before payment is received. Ask questions that are chiropractic specific and do not proceed if you feel uncomfortable about the transaction.

Emails from rich uncles and cousins that want to purchase equipment for their family chiropractors are scams, no matter how much we’d like to believe they are real.

I’m sharing this for people that may have been searching to confirm these email addresses. Scammer emails I’d watch out for include: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]

Thank you to everyone that participates in keeping the classifieds community in order (not just on this site, but worldwide).