Those bastards! Craigslist scammers alive and well

17 Sep

Update!!! Just this morning, I received ANOTHER scam e-mail — this time from “San How” at I’m posting it here so you can see how similar it is to the first one I got (below).

I am glad it is still  available for sale.I am very much interested in buying your item  and i am ok with the  price.  I am only able to make payment by money order at this time b/c i am away on assignment.  Please provide me with your name ,  address and phone number  for payment. It will take about 7days for payment to get to you. As per pick-up, I will make arrangement for the pick-up after payment has been received by you. I don’t mind adding thirty dollars so you can keep it in my favor.Please take the posting off craigslist today and consider it sold to me. Thanks
Expecting to hear from you soon.

I have been fantasizing about what I’d say if I were going to respond. My favorite so far? “I’m sure you don’t mind paying me $30 extra in fake money, you son of a bitch!”


If you are selling something on Craigslist and receive a bid from someone at the e-mail address, BEWARE. This is what he wrote me* earlier this week, and I wanted to spread the word:

Thank you for the reply to my mail inquiry am quite satisfied with the
condition .Am very much interested and i would like to make an
outright purchase, so i will appreciate it if you can withdraw the
advert from the web
.Actually am a bad stammerer,I would have call you
I will be paying with a certified check.Furthermore my mover will be
coming over for the pick up i  might not be available for the pick
up myself but am  OK with  the information from  the ad.I will need
the following information details to make payment arrangement 1,Your
full name to be on the Payment.2 ,Your postal address.3,Your phone
number  both land and mobile.4,Your postal code.????
I will really
appreciate it buying this item from you.So you get me the required
information for your payment to be issued asap.
Thank you.

I immediately felt uneasy that he was asking outright for my personal information, but it was offset by my misplaced, “Oh, that poor socially inept guy” sympathies.

But THEN! One of my always-savvy nNYers operatives also sent me to this great blog, which chronicles Craigslist scammers. The e-mails on there are shockingly similar to the one I received. Looking back, he never even mentioned the item I was selling, and the verbiage sounds completely canned. Those bastards.

Be careful out there, y’all.

*All emphasis mine, indicating that which I found suspicious.


4 Responses to “Those bastards! Craigslist scammers alive and well”

  1. Brittany Landgrebe 09/21 at 9:22 am #

    I get so many of those emails every time I put an ad on craigslist. But the first time I did it, it was late at night and I was bored so I was just staring at the ad. Then I clicked on a yellow highlighted link, and it gave examples of every aspect of a scammer:

    Normally “on assigment” “out of the country” or even in “Nigeria” or I think also “China” so they can’t pick it up. They always ask for Paypal, suggest checks, or money transfers on Western Union, which Craigslist already tells us on every ad. For me they always send a one sentence email “is the item sill available?” then when I say yes, they give me that spiel, or a similar one.

    I began adding at the bottom of my ads that I would only take cash and transfer the item hand to hand, and that I am very resolute on that. Even still I get spammers, but much less. Its funny, because everyone I know who actually buys off craigslist never sounds like any of those emails. A sample of what I usually email when I’m interested in buying something:

    “Hi! My names is Brittany and I found your ad for the (item) on craigslist. I realize the ad has been up awhile, but if its still available I’d love to come by, take a look, and likely purchase it. You’re price of $80 is more than fair, and I will gladly pay you in cash, in person. Is there a time and place we can meet up so I can take a look at it? Thanks so much!”

    I mentioned the item, the price, I wasn’t dumb enough not to look at the item in person, I was more than willing to pay cash in hand. One lady even said to me when I was at her neighborhood park “Thank goodness I checked my email earlier! I was getting so depressed by all the spammers, I was sure no one would end up buying this.”

    Scammers think we’re stupid, and maybe they do catch people in their snares, but a simple click on our own ads lead us to the truth. Good thing you got that nagging feeling, and the help of a nNYer!

  2. Brittany Landgrebe 09/21 at 9:24 am #

    ROFL. My last comment was almost as long as your entry! lol sorry about that.

  3. Whtiney 10/16 at 8:03 am #

    I live in Las Vegas, one of the scammiest places in the country. Having said that, I’ve been scammed multiple times, mostly with job offers through Craigslist. This may sound rude to some, but I have learned to not trust anyone you’re doing business with if they have poor grammar or spelling. As a rule, if they can’t pretend well enough to be educated, they probably don’t have what you’re looking for.


  1. Hope this helps: The NewNewYorkers keyword digest | NewNewYorkers - 12/05

    […] still available: Good on you guys for being wary of too-good-to-be-true responses to the stuff you’re selling on Craigslist, i.e. “I’ll offer you $20 more than […]

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