How the scam works:
(with video below)
If you're trying to sell your laptop these days, watch out for the Sell My Laptop For Cash or Cheap Laptops For Sale scam. Let's take a look.
Imagine the following scenario. You are trying to sell your laptop. You post an ad online, on specialty websites or on Gumtree, Kijiji, or Craigslist. Within minutes you receive a text message or email along these lines:
"Hello, I am interested in purchasing your laptop. My name is David Scott, I'm located at [insert address in your country]. I actually want to purchase this for my son. I will like to purchase at the listed price so you won't sell to another person. I really have interest in buying it for my son and I'm not within your premises to pay cash, and PayPal is my only option, which I think you accept, or if you can give me you PayPal address. I'll be very happy to go on with this transaction? Can you get the account ready?"
The conversation may vary, as some of the scammers are smooth and might want to open the chat with a couple of other questions ("What's your lowest price?", "Can you send me more pictures of the laptop?", "How long you had it for?", etc.) – just to get your trust. Alternatively, the scammer might justify that he can't come and see the laptop himself, as he is working at the sea or in some other environment where he cannot even use a phone.
However, let's say you provide the potential "buyer" the email address affiliated with the PayPal account. As you confirm that you created your account, you'll then get a fake PayPal email, informing you have been paid extra, just so you can pay the shipping agent for them. That's where the scam occurs: they ask to pay the shipping agent via Western Union and the payment is released to you after you have done that. Needless to say, you send the money to the agent and never received yours.
Watch the video below to see this scam exposed:
How to avoid the Sell My Laptop For Cash scam:
When it comes to a bigger purchase, it is a red flag every time the "buyer" refuses to have a phone conversation. You don't have to do it, but just ask for it for the sake of the answer you'll get. Think about it, if he is at sea and can't have a phone conversation, what are the chances he has Wi-Fi to go back and forth with your emails? Sell your laptop locally, face to face.
How to report the Sell My Laptop For Cash scam:
Make your family and friends aware of this scam by sharing it on social media using the buttons provided. You can also officially report the scammers to the Federal Trade Commission using the link below:
Here is a list with names, emails, and SMS numbers that scammers have been using in the last little while in North America and the United Kingdom:
John Greenfield, Sharon Morgan ( 1 951 888 3614), Marc Bonhomme, Julia Paige, Kathy (email@example.com), Pavel Milan, Sharon Hair and Paul Jason (both from 61 428 465117), Jay John, Michelle Clint (0428 465 117), Andey, Alex More (0428465117), Mark Vaughan (951 8883614), Harley Smith (915 888 3614), David Lucas (firstname.lastname@example.org), Alpa (email@example.com), Victoria Hill, Alley Barry, Janet Maxwell , Jason Maxwell, David Scott, John David, Mark Omoauntee, Eric Frank (firstname.lastname@example.org), Terry Lesley (email@example.com), Paul Anderson (firstname.lastname@example.org), Kellie Estrella (email@example.com, 614 28465117), John Owens, Gerald Dawson, Neil Robbie, Maria (301 9662359), Jody Williams (201 4778423), Terri Bower (firstname.lastname@example.org), Apostle Helen, Maria Murphy (mariamurphy19@gmail), Allan Macain (442 242 0019 and email@example.com), Kessy Dowell, Richie Richard Todd (firstname.lastname@example.org), Philip Pertel, Keith Scott (email@example.com), CC Walker (firstname.lastname@example.org), Phil Koch (email@example.com), Brian Lewis, Dmitry Matushev (firstname.lastname@example.org), Caryn Sundling (or Caryn Sundig).
Report any other names if you are being approached.
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