Just recently, I discovered a new modus operandi that is invading online classified sites.
A few days ago I posted an ad at Mudah.My, Malaysia’s online classified-ads website, hoping to sell my Nikon D90 DSLR.
Immediately, I received a message at my Whatsapp inquiring about my camera. I was happy and thought “Hey, that was fast.”
The “interested buyer” claimed “she” is a Canadian working at a local telecommunications company. She wasted no time and immediately proceeded with her agenda. She said she wants to give my camera as a gift to her sister working in “Africa” who is a photographer in the National Geographic Africa. Blah blah blah… Immediately I thought, this sounds like a scam. I wanted to know more so I played along with her.
I asked where I am sending the package to. She then gave the full address of the supposed recipient without second thoughts:
Here are the key points why this transaction is suspicious:
1. The area code she’s using is not from Malaysia (apparently her number’s using the area code of Africa)
2. If she’s sending the gift to her sister how come her “sister” has an African name
3. (Sorry to seem racist but) The package is going to “Nigeria”
So then I asked her if she can send me the money first before I ship her my camera. Surprisingly, she agreed. She wants me to tell her how much the shipping fee is so that she will include it in her “payment”.
At this point I was already getting really curious where the transaction was heading. So, I pretended I went to a nearby courier service, gave her the details, updating her in the process.
She then proceeded to ask where she’s going to transfer the money… blah, blah, blah. Later, I received an email from a so-called “Royal Bank” from Canada:
Notice the grammatical errors and capitalization mistakes:
Also, the email was sent to me at 3pm (Malaysia time), which is 3am in Canada. What bank is still open at dawn?
Anyway, I checked the email address. If it is a legit bank shouldn’t it be ending in @royalbank.com or @rbc.com?
This prompted us to check @consultant.com… then BAM!
According to http://www.419scam.org/419-consultant-com.htm
There you go! It’s a freaking S-C-A-M!
After I blocked the scammer from whatsapp, there are still a lot of scammers texting me about my camera wanting me to ship my camera, same modus… and all came from mudah.my (since I have not posted my ad listing elsewhere). Of course my reply was just “COD ONLY! MEET-UP ONLY”.
So, the moral of the story is BE CAREFUL especially when transacting online. When selling GADGETS or expensive stuff know the key rules:
>> NEVER ship the item until you have received the payment!
Or better yet… (both for buyers and sellers)
>> ONLY do Cash On Delivery transactions! Meet-ups only!
** ON ANOTHER NOTE… I am STILL selling my NIKON D90. It is still available… and I ACCEPT COD only >_<