False escrow


Another method is after winning a bid on items on the online auction site eBay (especially laptops or other consumer electronics), to suggest to use an escrow service. The escrow service is fraudulent and part of the scam. The victim will send the laptop or camera to the escrow service, never to hear from the scammer or escrow service again. The website of the escrow service will typically go offline after the victim has sent his goods. Some scammers send e-mails masquerading as official e-mails from PayPal to convince the victim that the escrow method is perfectly normal procedure; some of the e-mails contain spelling errors.

A variation of this scam is to adopt a more personal approach. The “buyer” bids for and wins the item on sale, only to then claim that it is actually to be a gift for a relative in Nigeria and asks for it to be sent direct there, even if the seller has specified that he or she will ship only within his or her own country. In order to facilitate the scam, the fraudulent buyer will often create a brand new legitimate eBay user account complete with a false address that is apparently in the seller’s home country, but which will not pass any kind of real inspection as the scammer will often create errors with the spelling, geography or postal code formats. As with escrow scams, the eBay ID will disappear as soon as the victim has sent the goods, and the scammers tend to target inexperienced first time, private sellers

Source : wikipedia

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