By Michael Dorausch, D.C.
Early this morning I was preparing for an awesome Wednesday at the office when I received an e-mail from a chiropractor questioning the validity of a reply he had for a piece of chiropractic equipment he was selling in the classifieds. On the surface the e-mail didn’t look quite as spammy and fraudulent as the many we’ve seen before, but it had all the key factors we see in classified advertising buyer scams.
To confirm, I always perform a search on the IP address to see if any unusual activity is appearing on the website. In the case of the e-mail I received this morning, the IP address 18.104.22.168 had sent some 67 identical e-mails to sellers of chiropractic equipment in about a 40 minute period, undoubtedly a scammer.
As I’ve been doing regularly, I like to post a copy of the e-mail that was sent (thanks to the chiropractors that alerted me) along with the e-mail address used and the IP address. I have received many e-mails in the past couple years, from folks using other websites for classified advertising that received similar e-mails from the same scammers, which has helped keep them from falling prey to 419 check and money order scammers.
Sender IP: 22.214.171.124
Posted To: Chiropractic Classifieds
I will like to show interest in buying your item,My name is Daniel William from Redlands CA .. I came across your item and i have really read all the description of the item and I’m very much interested to buy it.
I’ll like to buy the item for my Uncle as a birthday gift,i will like to ask you some few questions..
Q#1. How long have you owned it?
Q#2. Any available photo?
Q#3. How much are you asking for it?
Q#4. Do you accept a (Business Check/Cashier Check/Money Order)as a mode of payment?
Q#5. Get back to me with your Full name,address and Phone # to further our discussion.
Q#6.Do you accept a local pick up?
Note that you don’t need to worry about shipping as i have a private shipping company that will take care of the shipping and delivery of the item once payment is been received by you.
I’ll like to have the response to these question in your earliest convenience.
Hope to hear from you soon.
Best Regard And God Bless,
The biggest change I see in this e-mail from those sent in the past, is the buyer identifies themselves as somebody that is local in the United States (in this case Redlands California). Their e-mail explains that they want to buy the item for their uncle as a birthday gift. Who buys their uncle x-ray processing equipment for a present? That should be a flag right there.
The bigger flag though, is that the item is not mentioned in the e-mail, which makes it much easier for the scammer to send out mass mailings using the template seen above.
I like the finishing touch of… God Bless That tends to be seen in nearly every fraudulent e-mail in this sort of category. Very simply, the above e-mail is an attempt to separate someone from their items for sale and/or their money. Here’s a long list of nearly identical blog posts regarding this kind of fraudulent online activity. You don’t have to read all the posts to get an understanding of what’s going on, but I’d recommend you read at least three of them, before posting any classified ads on any website online.
Classifieds Ad Fraud Attempt Today
Helene Dido Internet Classified Ad Scams
Mr Osram Slam oceanltd2000 Scam
Nigerian Scammer Loaded Martins
Martins Gilbert Woodland Property Investment Scam
Mark Nicholas mark_nicho95 Fraud Alert
Daniel Monday Scam Alert
Mr Benson Raymond Nigeria Scam 126.96.36.199
Constant Watch on Fraud and Scams
1000 mentions of fraud and phishing
I can haz ur money?
Maybe somebody wants to buy me a digital x-ray unit for my birthday?