Operation Fraud: Scammers Target Online Sellers

By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

If you ever posted something for sale online, whether it be an auction site or classified ad site, chances are you’ve been contacted by a scammer. Scams come in all shapes and sizes, and while they begin to look obvious after you’ve seen a few, people continue to fall for the techniques. As a result, scammers push massive amounts of emails (often through automation) to those selling items online. On planetchiropractic.com I noticed 2 new fraud emails yesterday, resulting in a scam alert, and this advisory post.

i came across your ad listing and i will(screenshot: text from email scammer)

Take a look at the text in this image, it’s classic product scammer text. The sender asks about final selling price, working condition, available pics, location, and method of payment accepted. The hallmark classic sign is the questioning about accepting a money order or certified cheque as form of payment. In this case, the buyer name used was Lionel Smith, and the templated email sent was typical for this sort of shenanigans. Here is the complete email text (notice the poor speeling and grammer)…


Hello Seller,
i came across your ad listing and i will like to know the following question:

1) What is the final asking price of the item?
2)What is the working condition of the item
3)Any available pict?
4)What ios the working condition of the item?
5)Will you accept a certified check or Money Order as mode of payment?
6)Is item still at your location or another location?
Get back to me as soon as possible.

Hope to read from you soon…
Lionel Smith

In order to help those that are searching to see if individuals that have emailed them about their items for sale are for real or not, here is a list of pseudo names we’ve seen recently. Mike Rapp, Tom Marley, Smith Matt, Benson Raymond, and Daniel Monday. There are many more but these are the most recent I’m familiar with.

Hopefully you found this post before you have accepted payment for the items you are selling. If you are considering posting classified ads (on ANY website), review these 6 Scam Tips before accepting that overpaid cashiers check from Nigeria.

planetc1.com-news @ 12:18 pm | Article ID: 1226434717