In my previous post I told the story of how a cybercriminal posed as a handicapped person in an attempt to either steal money from me or commit identity theft, or both, while I was trying to sell the used wheelchair depicted on the right. Now I have the rest of the story.
The last email I told you about was this one:
Dear Mitchell Sturgeon,Soon after I received this email:
My name is Richard Wilson. I'm a PayPal representative in charge of your transaction with Tracy Grubbs.
Kindly reply to this message if you have any question regarding this transaction and I will be happy to help you.
We thank you for being an asset to PayPal and we hope to serve you better in the nearest future.
Image via CrunchBase
Dear Mitchell Sturgeon,And then this one:
You have an Instant Payment of $2,230.00 USD from Tracy Grubbs (email@example.com).
Purchased From:Mitchell Sturgeon
Item #Item TitleQuantityPriceSubtotal
Power Wheelchair- Invacare
Shipping & Handling via World Wide Speed Post to 03276
(includes any seller handling fees)$500.00USD
Shipping Insurance (not offered):--
Sales Tax :$00.00 USD
I have made the payment, so I have forwarded your details to the Shipping Company who will pick up the item, please send the pick up cost to them as we discussed and arrange with them the pick up date and time. Thanks.
20 Dearborn Rd. Apt. 1.
Shipping Method:The item will be picked up from the seller's Location by World Wide Speed Post Agent.
If you have any question regarding the pick up, please contact the Delivery Company firstname.lastname@example.org or your buyer.
Thank you for using PayPal!
The PayPal Team.
PayPal Email ID PP1268.
PayPal Safety Measures Against Online Fraud!Isn’t it ironic that the cybercriminals were using fear of fraud as a tool to attempt to commit fraud. So if you see these types of sham PayPal emails, know that they are fraud.
Dear Mitchell Sturgeon,
We have received an order from one of our customer to make an instant payment of $2,230.00USD to your PayPal account. The payment has been made successfully and the money has been credited to your PayPal account but you will not have access to it. However, since this money is meant for a purchase or a service that involve a Shipping Company.We have to receive a confirmation that you have sent the pick up cost to World Wide Speed Post before the money will be available for spending. This is due to the large increase in the rate of the online scams recorded last year (2009). We have changed some of our rules and regulation to make sure our clients, are safe from scam, PayPal in conjunction with The FBI and The IFCC has invented certain preventive measure to ensure the safety of our customers.
Such measure are:
1. Once a payment is made,A confirmation Email will be sent to the seller that the payment has been made to state the transaction details which has been sent to you. Also a confirmation is sent to the buyer that the money has been deducted from his or her account. So once you get this mail,You should take necessary action and get back to us with the confirmation that you have sent the pick up cost to the shipping company. Once we have confirmed the information provided with the shipping company, the money will be available instantly.
2. Once a payment is made and it has been approved by PayPal, such transaction is Sealed (because both seller and buyer must have come to a conclusion before payment is made by the buyer) so therefore neither the buyer or seller can cancel this transaction or ask for the returned to the buyer's account. Also, this is where we generate our income, because the more transaction made through PayPal, the more we generate our Income.
3. Failure to abide by these laid down safety measures by PayPal may leads to suspension from PayPal and further more invitation to an interrogation with the F.B.I
So can you see we are very considerate about the safety of both buyer and seller.
Note: that the pick up cost has been included in the payment.
Thank you for using PayPal
I also, supposedly, received direct emails from Tracy, like this one:
Hi,I was tempted to respond with either a scathing email, trying to shame them, or some email that would string them along just for fun. However, I decided instead to just ignore their emails…they'll figure it out soon enough.
I wondered why I have not heard from you regarding the pick up cost. I will like you to update me if you have sent the pick up cost to the shipping company and schedule pick up date and time? and if you have not I need to understand what is still delaying you. Get back to me ASAP. Thanks.
The good news is that today I sold the wheelchair to a live human being who was clearly disabled and will make great use of the chair. She paid in cash. End of story.
Be careful out there.