Craigslist, Ebay and other online buying/selling scams.
#200960 by Lincoln Osirus Sat May 10, 2014 6:40 am
So let me give you the whole story, step by step. About 5 weeks ago I receive this email.

"Dear _________!

We are looking for trustworthy, outgoing, and focused individuals who have live accounts at leading online auction portals or operate Internet stores to distribute our wares.

The spring season is fast approaching, and you have a very real chance to acquire additional income selling seasonal goods. You invest none of your own money, and you can start right away. To ease into the process, you can begin with 2-3 goods while undergoing the initial trial period. Also keep in mind that we sell varied categories of items, so assortment will not be an issue.

Our Ideal Candidate:
- Ideally, we’re looking for people operating their own eBay & Amazon accounts, anyone with an online distribution platform account, and proprietors of Internet retail outlets
- Expertise in Microsoft Office are desired for structured reporting
- Communication skills and customer support experience are an advantage as well

Do you know how to sell goods, and do you enjoy working in retail? Have you had online sales experience? And are you registered on eBay? If so, we would love to hear from you."

After looking at some other posts on here, this sounds familiar.

I decided to take the risk and start slow. I post product listings for my contact, they ship them, I post tracking confirmation numbers, my money is released to my Paypal.

This individual who will go unnamed says she works with an online company (Cooperdeals.com), and gave me her number as well. I emailed the website yesterday to check out if her story is true-I should've probably done that weeks ago. haha

Anyways, I have sold about $2,000 so far on ebay in the past month, and part of the deal is I keep 20%. The dropshipper pays for all fees-Paypal, ebay, shipping, etc.

I just made my first payment transfer to them yesterday. This is where it gets interested, and also very sketchy.

They wanted Western Union payment...but not to them...to one of their 'colleagues' who lives in Ukraine. The lady claims this is her business colleague, and she has a few online businesses.

I did it, only for the first few items, $270, and I promptly received a happy email back thanking me. Everything went well.

I have received multiple positive feedbacks so far from customers, as well as messages about items. So far people have been receiving their items as described, new and genuine, and the only problem I've had is with a few people who demand fast shipment (which I have almost no control over). I've had to make a refund because of one particularly angry person who wanted the item within a few days. Obviously, I will have to make it very clear in future listings that it may take up to 2 weeks or even longer for items to ship.

Anyway, everything so far has gone well, and now my contact has sent me a list of literally 70 items that I can put up, which would be a pretty awesome payday for both of us. But, obviously, there are a good number of parts of this story that sound sketchy as heck.

1) Western Union payment...international
2) Unsolicited email
3) Person has not been a stickler about numbers-doesn't demand to see my ebay account/s or any info on prices the items sold for

I'm sure there are more, but those are the things that stick out to me as possibly scammy. But what is the scam, exactly?

The items are being shipped to real people in the US only, and I have received positive feedback. So it can't be that empty boxes are being dropped off. Beyond that, Paypal won't free my money up to me until people have physically received their items, and not given me complaints.

I have brought this up to my friend, and he thinks this may be some sort of stolen goods scam, because all the items I start out at $100 or so and usually sell for more, but they are at a 30-40% discount off retail.

I think IF this is a scam, it may be a tax angle-and sending money overseas definitely seems to give credence to that possibility. I am 50/50 on this being legit and being some sort of scheme.

Arguments in my mind in favor of this being legit:

1) They don't know and aren't asking for my bank account info or social security number, ebay account info, Paypal info, etc.
2) They cover ALL fees, refunds, shipping, etc.
3) I have the proceeds from their items locked up until I send it-they aren't asking me for money through W.U. or Moneygram that is my own-it's theirs' except for my 20% commission-and they won't/can/t receive payment from me until everything is cleared from customers and Paypal that nothing is awry


So what do YOU think?
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#200963 by TerranceBoyce Sat May 10, 2014 7:12 am
It's most certainly a scam and the consequences to those who have fallen for it have been disastrous and life-changing. You only have to look at ebay's own guidance for this type of operation to understand the risks and consequences.

Who in their right minds would want to give away 20% of their earnings for no reason, trading under your name and risking your credit ? There's no good reason to do this and the obvious reason is widely known. The fact that you have reason to believe the third party is likely to be based in the Ukraine is massive red flag.

If you haven'y had problems so far, I can only imagine that it's because you're being set up for something much bigger. Even mention of Ukraine as being involved is a good guide as to what's going on as most sites have an embargo on dealing with ex-Soviet states simply because of the frauds based in those countries. Using you as an intermediary is merely a way of attempting to bypass those controls.

The likelihood that this party isn't involved in fraud is minimal. What do you know about the people for whom you are accepting financial risk for all their trading ? You're effecting providing a financial guarantee for a stranger, and one who is trading in an abnormal manner using you to bypass financial controls of major US institutions. You won't avoid the risk and consequences of your actions. You should urgently look up Ebay guidance on these arrangement before you get any deeper in to this.
Last edited by TerranceBoyce on Sat May 10, 2014 7:30 am, edited 2 times in total.

CAR ADVERTS - If a car seller mentions escrow - he's scamming you Never ever for any reason pay anything until you have seen and inspected the vehicle
#200964 by AlanJones Sat May 10, 2014 7:15 am
It is not legit and it is very likely that you are selling goods paid for with stolen credit cards.

When the people who bought the goods off of YOU start being contacted by the police asking why they are having stolen goods sent to them - it will be your details that they give to the police.

I would recommend that you do not:
1. list any more items.
2. send any more money to the Ukraine.

I would also recommend that you print off all the emails etc. and take them to the police before they come looking for you.

Please do not tell scammers that they are listed here - it will take them seconds to change their fake details and their new details will not be listed for any future victims to find.
#200965 by AlanJones Sat May 10, 2014 7:22 am
Lincoln Osirus wrote:This individual who will go unnamed says she works with an online company (Cooperdeals.com), and gave me her number as well. I emailed the website yesterday to check out if her story is true-I should've probably done that weeks ago. haha


The website Cooperdeals.com is fake, so they're going to confirm it is all above board because they are part of the scam.


1-612-231-1739 - a VoIP number - a legit business would not need one of these.
1-612-486-7123 - another VoIP number

49-211-95987528
65-67-250-524

2083 49th Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55430
29 Harpener Straße, Dusseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia
11 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore

cooperdealsmail (at) gmail.com ([email protected]) - no legitimate business uses a Gmail address.

Please do not tell scammers that they are listed here - it will take them seconds to change their fake details and their new details will not be listed for any future victims to find.
#200968 by AlanJones Sat May 10, 2014 7:30 am
You are not contacting them to report where the items were shipped, you should be contacting the police because you are the person they will soon come looking for, so you need to show them you are a victim and not part of the fraud..

You will be in a far better position if you contact them to advise what you have got yourself involved in, before they come looking for you. Even more so if, when they start investigating you, they find that you knew it was a scam and did nothing about it.

Please do not tell scammers that they are listed here - it will take them seconds to change their fake details and their new details will not be listed for any future victims to find.
#200969 by AlanJones Sat May 10, 2014 7:32 am
Lincoln Osirus wrote:Also, all the tracking numbers for items have originated in Springfield, MO. So they are being shipped within the US only. Should that mean anything?


Where they originate from and go to is irrelevant - the police's view will be that you are selling stolen goods on eBay and your accomplice is shipping them - the person shipping them will either be another victim or if he is part of the criminal gang behind this, he'll be clever enough to hide his identity - leaving you as the only firm lead the authorities have.

Please do not tell scammers that they are listed here - it will take them seconds to change their fake details and their new details will not be listed for any future victims to find.
#200973 by AlanJones Sat May 10, 2014 7:45 am
I'm not in the USA, but I would recommend you speak to your local police for advice and also report it here http://www.ic3.gov/default.aspx - The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C).

Please do not tell scammers that they are listed here - it will take them seconds to change their fake details and their new details will not be listed for any future victims to find.
#200976 by TerranceBoyce Sat May 10, 2014 8:17 am
They wanted Western Union payment...but not to them...to one of their 'colleagues' who lives in Ukraine. The lady claims this is her business colleague, and she has a few online businesses.


A business without a bank account that only deals in anonymous payments in cash to them in the Ukraine ?

CAR ADVERTS - If a car seller mentions escrow - he's scamming you Never ever for any reason pay anything until you have seen and inspected the vehicle
#200978 by Lincoln Osirus Sat May 10, 2014 8:33 am
Yeah that really pushed me over the edge I think.

I just wonder what the entire process is, what exactly they are doing to get these items, for example. She did mention/claim that she deals with 'virtual currency' online and that is why she wanted it sent to her friend in Ukraine (I have his name and city and even address-she provided them all). I was like huh?

Well I just filed a report on that website Alan, so hopefully they get back to me soon. I think I may just go to the police Monday as well.
#201007 by vonpaso xlura Sat May 10, 2014 2:41 pm
This sounds like a triangulation scam. (I've heard of such only once before.) Alice buys an item from you for less than the list price. Bob gets a stolen credit card from Carol and pays Manfred full price for it. Manfred ships the item to Alice. You send the money to Bob.

... ni los estafadores heredarán el reino de Dios. 1 Cor. 6:10
#201041 by Mumbles Sat May 10, 2014 9:59 pm
IC3 normally doesn't respond. They just collect information in case a federal law enforcement agency asks.

It is pretty sure that your associates in Ukraine are using you to cash out stolen credit information. Definitely save all the info you have about how you were tricked in case, just in case. I think your local police wouldn't have jurisdiction and would be no help to you, but you can call during office hours and ask the advice of a detective.

Do not send any more money. Business is never done by Western Union or MoneyGram. You may be threatened, but don't worry, the bad guys aren't coming to your house.

Don't be a dropshipper on Ebay. The person who has the item could list it and sell it as easy as you can, so there is no reason to pay you unless ... well, you just found out.

“If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as a Michaelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well ...”

Martin Luther King Jr.
#201122 by Lincoln Osirus Sun May 11, 2014 1:12 pm
vonpaso xlura wrote:This sounds like a triangulation scam. (I've heard of such only once before.) Alice buys an item from you for less than the list price. Bob gets a stolen credit card from Carol and pays Manfred full price for it. Manfred ships the item to Alice. You send the money to Bob.


Well, I looked up some triangulation scams, and mine doesn't exactly fit. Why? Because my partner must have the items at their warehouse physically, and then shipped off via Fedex or UPS to my buyers. It seems that most of these triangulation schemes involve people buying items online with stolen credit cards and then sending those items to customers rather than to themselves. I guess what I'm saying is if this is a stolen goods scam, it wouldn't be hard to bust the people responsible.

Still trying to figure out the role of the Ukrainian though. Do THEY buy items online overseas with stolen credit cards and send them to the warehouse in the U.S.? Hmm.

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