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Thread: Scammers using the BMW MOA Flea Market

  1. #61
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    Replying to the original post: These internet scams although a hassle, and a waste of time, and now more common than ever, luckily I find them very easy to spot. I hope no one is actually falling for these scams since they seem to all follow the same pattern: quick replies to ads for bikes (or whatever you happen to be selling) when any reasonable person knows the wares you are selling will usually take a some time to sell. The email is always from someone in a different country, or a friend of a friend or a distant relative, who has tons of money and wants to pay extra for you to accept a wire transfer and send the difference to his friend...etc, etc...you get the point.

    Bottom line: if you're selling your bike or parts on the forum, just talk to the person on the phone before exchanging money, or better yet just trust your gut. If the deal sounds too good to be true, it is.

  2. #62
    Out There Somewhere bmwrider88's Avatar
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    my experience with this might not match exactly everyone else's but i've had a few attempts made at scamming me on CL. i typically just either do not respond or just respond with thanks, item no longer for sale.

    i ALWAYS use language in my ads such as LOCAL SALES ONLY, CASH US DOLLARS ONLY, NO 2ND OR 3RD PARTY TRANSACTIONS, etc.-i put something in the ad to let the world know i'm hip to funny business, and not an easy mark. somebody contacts me with less than perfect language, grammar, diction or punctuation i delete. also if the word *item* is used instead of specifically naming the part or piece.

    i might not be a total techie but i CAN spot BS when i see it...
    or when it is aimed at me.

    here are few tips i have learned over the years. this is good technique but also can be adjusted to fit your individual situation or needs.
    adjust as you will, once you get a feel for the person you are dealing with. from the beginning, draw a hard line and don't be afraid to be what you might consider an @$$hole until you are sure who you are dealing with. remember this person does NOT know you, so heck with what they might think. maybe they are trying to screw you.

    NEVER assent to an overseas transaction. unless you can have everything verified.
    NEVER deal with a 2nd or 3rd party.
    ALWAYS deal in CASH US DOLLARS. if not then DEMAND a USPS (or some kind of) MONEY ORDER.
    TALK to the person ON THE PHONE if possible.
    KEEP IT AS LOCAL AS POSSIBLE.
    NEVER give up too much information about yourself.
    ALWAYS have the response go thru whatever system you are using instead of direct response to your email address.
    NEVER CLICK ON A LINK.
    NEVER ACCEPT A "CASHIER'S" CHECK. they CAN be faked.
    FORGET WESTERN UNION.
    IF YOU TAKE A CHECK WAIT TIL THE MONEY CLEARS. tell the person you will do this.
    REPORT ALL SCAM ATTEMPTS.

    good luck and BE CAREFUL out there.

  3. #63
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    More scamming or am I just paranoid?

    Has anyone had any recent responses to their ads from a
    Mark Hughs. He has provided me a Vermont phone number along with a UK number, somewhat different from the one described here. Also, we have had several emails and he even called me. He states he's looking to buy my Airhead but wants me to wait until he's back in the States. My antennae are up and on high alert.
    Appreciate any information.
    H. Juster
    2006 R1200RT

  4. #64
    "Running Out The Clock" grafikfeat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hjuster1 View Post
    Has anyone had any recent responses to their ads from a
    Mark Hughs. He has provided me a Vermont phone number along with a UK number, somewhat different from the one described here. Also, we have had several emails and he even called me. He states he's looking to buy my Airhead but wants me to wait until he's back in the States. My antennae are up and on high alert.
    Appreciate any information.
    Tell him when he's back in the States it's a cash sale.
    And no... You won't hold it.

    First money takes it.

    Done.

  5. #65
    BMW MOV Muriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hjuster1 View Post
    Has anyone had any recent responses to their ads from a
    Mark Hughs. He has provided me a Vermont phone number along with a UK number, somewhat different from the one described here. Also, we have had several emails and he even called me. He states he's looking to buy my Airhead but wants me to wait until he's back in the States. My antennae are up and on high alert.
    Appreciate any information.
    Is that how he spells his last name - without an "e"? I don't find any Hughs in Vermont at all - there are several spelled "Hughes".

    Muriel
    BMW MOA Secretary
    '07 F650 '12 F650 twin
    Running on One Cylinder - except when running on two

  6. #66
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    You folks are good. I let my angst rule the day and told him to get in touch with me when he returns to the States and he can see the bike if its still available. On the other hand, I just looked up his name and found a Mark Hughes (with an e) in Manchester Vt which is where he said he would want the bike delivered. Regardless, I remain very skeptical that someone is so interested in the bike without having seen it other than the pictures in the ad and has no specific questions about it. If it doesn't sell now, it will surely sell in the Spring. Thanks for your helpful comments.
    H. Juster
    2006 R1200RT

  7. #67
    Dum vivimus vivamus ted's Avatar
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    As a reminder, this is how the scam usually works for ripping off people selling bikes.

    Hi, my name is Mike and I am temporarily living in the UK. It isn't really and I actually live in Nigeria, but you will never know that. Last week I created a web site called "Thief Motorcycle Shipping, Inc." using a US host like Godaddy and a stolen credit card. I also made a fake Yahoo e-mail address, something like mikemotorider@yahoo.com to make it look legitimate. I made the website look quite official, since I do this at least once a week I have gotten quite good at it.

    Late last week I contacted someone selling a bike in the US named Fred. I told him I was temporarily living in the UK and wanted to buy his bike so it would be waiting for me when I got home. I even used the same stolen credit card to get a +44 70 forwarding number so it will look like I have a British phone number in the UK even when I am talking from downtown Lagos, Nigeria.

    He agreed to sell me the bike for his full asking price of $5,000 and ship it to my home in Vermont. I even looked up a random name and address in Vermont to make it look legitimate.

    I used my high quality printer to make up a fake cashier's check, only I made it for $8,000, and mailed it off to him knowing he would get it on Monday or so. I then sent him an e-mail, told him I had sent off the check, and told him that to make things easier I added the shipping cost to the check and directed him to my awesome fake shipping website where he was to send an e-mail with an account number I made up from the back of a pack of cigarettes for more information on paying for the shipping and arranging for pickup. I told Fred to deposit the (fake) check when he got it and then use the extra money to pay the shipping -- because I knew that it would take a week or two for Fred's bank to discover it was fake. In the meantime that bank would credit Fred for the $8,000, or most of it. Only later when the bank discovered the check was fake would they call Fred and tell him the check was fake and they were taking all the money they had credited him back. But I would already have Fred's money by then.

    An hour later I looked in the fake e-mail account for Thief Motorcycle Shipping Company and there was Fred's e-mail with the number from the now empty pack of smokes. I replied as the owner of the shipping company, that Fred was to go to Western Union within the next week and wire $3,000 to Thief Motorcycle Shipping with that same fake number, e-mail the Western Union confirmation number along with the pickup address, and Thief Motorcycle Shipping would send a truck by on Sunday to pick up the bike.

    Fred got the check on Tuesday and deposited it in his bank. His bank credited him $4,000 up front, and Fred took $3,000 of that to Western Union and wired it to Thief Motorcycle Shipping. Then as directed he e-mailed Thief Motorcycle Shipping with the Western Union confirmation number so they knew it was properly paid and the pickup address. It all looked very official.

    On Wednesday I checked the e-mail I had set up for Thief Moto Shipping and saw Fred had sent the confirmation number. Man was I happy. I walked a few blocks across downtown Lagos to the Western Union office, gave them the name and number and walked out with $3,000 in my pocket. It was quite handy that I knew and Fred didn't that no matter where Fred intended to wire the money, anyone with the name and number could pick it up anywhere in the world. I went back to the Internet cafe and deleted the website and the fake personal e-mail account I had created. Then I went and had a HUGE dinner on Fred - thanks buddy!

    On Sunday no-one showed up at Fred's to pick up the bike. He tried e-mailing Mike but the e-mail bounced. On Monday morning Fred's bank called and said the check he had deposited was fake and they were taking the money they had credited to his account back.

    Fred was out $3,000 and all he had to show for it was a valuable lesson.
    Ted
    "A good stick is a good reason"
    1994 K75RT
    Moto Pages

  8. #68
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    Excellent description. And they aren't even interested in the bike. That's a great diversion because as the seller, that's all I'm thinking about. Thanks very much for this.

    This guy is trying very hard to sound legit so I'm putting him through the paces. He says he knows the shop where I get my work done (Max's in Troy) so I'm going to find out who he knows there and check in with them. Ultimately he needs to show up with the cash.

    Do they ever use counterfeit cash?
    H. Juster
    2006 R1200RT

  9. #69
    Outlander Omega Man's Avatar
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    Ted, that was perfect!!!!

    Nice Job
    "Well they say.. time loves a hero but only time will tell.. If he's real, he's a legend from heaven If he ain't he was sent here from hell" Lowell George
    2009 F800GS 1994 TW200
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  10. #70
    2-up and havin' fun sugarhillctd's Avatar
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    Ted,

    Thanks for reminding everyone to be careful out there.

    I recall posting about "BustedupCowGirl" and you found her website. As you might remember this is a woman who took many 419 scammers for a "ride".

    I see that once again her site is non-current but it was some very funny reading.

    There remain traces of her site here and there- a Google search for BustedupCowGirl still provides some entertainment

    John
    John & Cathy
    '92 K100RS (gone- '04 R1100S Boxer Cup)
    '12 Suzuki DRZ400
    ("kid's" bikes) '02 Kaw ZX6R- Jen's '07 Duc 800ss- Johnnie's

  11. #71
    Survivor akbeemer's Avatar
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    Gee Ted, sounds like you spent some time in the IT business in Lagos.

    My brush with a scammer entailed getting an email from a soldier deployed to Afghanistan. She tried to get me to open a PayPal account so she could send me the money. The scam was that she provided the link to a fake PayPal site. Had I used it I would have provided her with some financial info that could have been used to bleed me dry. They are heartless and will use any angle to take your money.
    Kevin Huddy
    Intrepid Incompetent
    Tm Pterodactyl MT Outpost

  12. #72
    Registered User Olsensan's Avatar
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    I just received an email message from this clown too. Where's that unabomber guy? I need a favor.

  13. #73
    2009 F650GS SirRonny's Avatar
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    When you are bored this winter, go to this site http://www.419eater.com/html/letters.htm and watch people scam the scammers. Very funny and amazing what these guys can get the scammers to do. If I didn't ride a bike so much and didn't have too much to do, I think I would like scamming these low life scammers. Take a look and have a laugh.

    Ron
    Ron Morris
    Cape Girardeau, Missouri
    2009 F650GS
    AMA, BMWMOA #153389, IBMWR and NRA

  14. #74
    Let's go scooterboy's Avatar
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    I too, put an ad in the BMWMOA wanted column and immediatley received a similar response. I have put a lot of ads on Craigs List and received many responses like that. I have always just ignored them. I guess I should report them to somebody, but I don't know who that would be.

  15. #75
    BMW MOV Muriel's Avatar
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    Whenever I get spam, I forward the emails to my "email company" (can't think of the correct term!) and the FTC as well as I think it helps . . . . I made a mini mail list called "Report Spam" which includes both of the above addresses so I only have to forward once.

    Good luck,

    Muriel
    BMW MOA Secretary
    '07 F650 '12 F650 twin
    Running on One Cylinder - except when running on two

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