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 Apartment Craigslist Scam

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:02 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Hi I am new to the site, stumbled on here by accident while googling a scam I noticed on Craigslist recently.

I was responding to an add for an apartment, and the responder told me they were out of the country (UK to be exact) and would send me the keys and contract via TNT through an escrow service. Basically I Moneygram them the money and once their "TNT Agent" received the funds would release the keys and contract for a 2 day delivery. Clearly a scam.

The emails are pretty robotic, like a cut and paste job...and they never answer any questions. The sad part is I have seen postings on Craigslist from people who fell for the scams and have been swindled from $500 - 2000.

Has anyone else seen this type of scam pop up? I noticed that it is predominately sent from Gmail accounts (there is no IP to track with Gmail) and I have seen them in the California and NYC housing market as well.

Is there anything we can do to combat this latest type of scam?
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sheboppe
The Sparkly Member


Joined: 10 Dec 2004
Posts: 5002
Location: United States


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:27 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Many members on here bait them. Wink

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:42 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Awesome. So part of my problem is I sent my initial response to them, with a REAL NAME and email address. Yes, yes, I know, I am an idiot, but honestly, when I started to look for a new apartment/condo I didn't think people were out to scam me on Craigslist. Call me naive. Worse yet, the person can easily google me in the US if they wanted to...so I need a way to extricate myself from the scam...I guess stop replying is the easiest?

In the interim, I have started to email them with fake accounts. I saw posts about tools for generating fake Moneygram receipts to send them if they request it. I searched everywhere but I couldn't find it.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I can tell by the tone of the email they are getting really eager, but they are also sending me loads of emails at my real email address as well...
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lotta
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Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 13613
Location: 2 Speckled Cct Springfield Lakes QLD 4300


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:54 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Ignore all the mails coming to your real address (or block them), then continue the bait from your baiting account.

Some great forms to use can be found here:

http://millionaires.6te.net/forms/baiterpage/index.html

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:14 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks Lotta!

On a side note, the email address for "verification" of payment to TNT on deliveryman.com has gone PERM_FAILURE: SMTP Error (state 13): 550: Account Deactivated

So I emailed the person who was the scammer to tell them that when I tried to send verification to the address it bounced back.

How come nobody has tried to shut down deliveryman.com? It is clearly being used as a mail relay for a lot of these advance fee scams...right?
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SlayerFaith
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Joined: 03 Mar 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:29 am Reply with quoteBack to top

IIRC deliveryman.com is not a domain, it's a subdomain of free email service mail.com, just like diplomats.com and consultant.com.

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:44 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Ooooohhhh, so how do you complain to have an account shut down or deactivated? I can't find a "abuse, complaint" address for the site and the site has no information on the www page.

Thanks!
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SlayerFaith
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Joined: 03 Mar 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:47 am Reply with quoteBack to top

You cannot bait an account if you get it shut down, Spook, and neither can the rest of us. The general consensus is that killing free email accounts owned by scammers is pointless, as it takes them only 5 minutes to set up a new one and go right on scamming. That said, "vanity" emails addys like [email protected] cost money and should be killed, as should phone lad addies (see the phone lads forum for more details) that are spammed all over the internet.

Welcome to the Eater!

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sheboppe
The Sparkly Member


Joined: 10 Dec 2004
Posts: 5002
Location: United States


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 3:25 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Spook, as SF pointed out, getting lad email accounts shut down doesn't stop them from scamming, but it does wreck a bait, or sabotage an LE investigation if the account is no longer accessible.

If you want to fight scammers, please join the rest of us and bait the lads. Baiting is a lot more satisfying and productive than fighting against something that you can't control, such as lad email accounts.

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lotta
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Joined: 08 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 4:13 am Reply with quoteBack to top

What you can do that certainly does help, is report them to Craig's list every time you see a scam posted.

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 9:21 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Good points, thanks. In reference to their fake TNT email account, that is not the primary scammer, but the account that sends out the Fake TNT Email for the MoneyOrder. The fake TNT email account is back up and running, so it must have been a temporary glitch.

I thought originally it would be funny if their fake TNT account was shut down, because then it is funny to see them scramble to set up another fake TNT account...but in this case you are right, just leave it alone and let them run their game.

I already reported the listing on Craigslist about a week ago to their abuse email address, but the listing is still up. So I guess they must be swamped or just not able to remove it for some reason.

I am assuming this type of baiting is pretty straight forward, and since it is for small potatoes ($1000) they are more likely to walk away versus a $20,000+ scam.
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OxygenDeprived
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:11 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

While it may not be the primary account, it could very well be the same lad, just using a 2nd account. Many of us bait using multiple email accounts & characters. They send you on because it makes it look legitimate.

Lads will try to scam you for any amount of money they think they can get. A lot of times they will try to get you for a small amount just to get you hooked and then try to get for more. But that said, it's the high dollar amount scams that they are more willing to do stupid stuff for you (i.e. - travel on a safari).

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:29 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Ok, I need some advice on this one. The main account that they were using for their "fake" TNT was disabled, so they set up 2 news ones and told me that there was a problem with their email server.

So let's say the email addresses are as follows (sorry for explaining):

Old Address blah-info-name1
New Addresses blah-info-name2 and blah-name1-info

SO, I went and discovered that blah-name2-info is available, and I am sure you'll think I am a dolt...but I signed up for the account.

Now here is where I am thinking I can have a little fun (italics to denote future actions). I can send an email to blah-name2-info giving them (really me) the information for my transaction.

Let the mugu know I have sent the details. They will rush to check their fake TNT account and they won't find it. I will then forward the confirmation email from my hijacked similar domain (which is clearly an easy mistake, following their STUPID naming convention). Of course this email is a confirmation of receipt of the funds.

Now the Mugu is really confused...he wonders, who is hijacking his scam...and I am sure I will get an email from him to MY fake TNT account...is this a good way to bait him into cutting into his action, telling him "let's work together, and not apart?"


Or am I being an idiot and should I just keep baiting as the payee?

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justjay
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Joined: 22 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 1:37 am Reply with quoteBack to top

You should probably consider asking for a mentor in the thread at Assistance to Newcomers (Aka...Mentor requests)

Then you get some one on one advice/assistance from experienced baiters, (and you can still ask general questions of all the masters and wannabe master baiters.) Laughing

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 3:26 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks. I did that already though, and haven't been PMed by anyone. I will pop back over, and see if anyone volunteered.
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sheboppe
The Sparkly Member


Joined: 10 Dec 2004
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Location: United States


PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 3:37 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Cherrie assigns mentors. Sometimes it takes a few days to be assigned to someone. Smile

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 3:56 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Ahh, well then I mistakenly PMed someone who said they would take on Mentees. Haha. DOH! I will wait until Cherrie assigns.

Hmm, I can't wait to see how desperate the Mugu gets. I will get everything set up to really throw the lad into a frenzy, but hold off on sending anything until later (pending my mentors suggestions).

Ooh, this could be fun...I may be able to really give the lad a mind fook if I play this one right.
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LaBrea
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 4:00 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Welcome, US_Spook!

Sounds like a reasonable approach, but it will probably take some insistence on your part to get the lad to go for it.

The first thing he'll tell your "victim" is "ignore the other account, they are liars", etc.

If you tell him you sent a down payment via WU/Moneygram, then you may leave the door open.
You can then insist that you have already paid for part of the rent to the other guy, and you don't want to get screwed, so you complain to him.
Now the dolla chopper can contact the lad and offer a deal, because you still need to come up with the 2nd half of the rent.

Plausible? Maybe.
Give it a try and see what happens... you're baiting from a safe account, so no harm in losing the bait.

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 5:22 am Reply with quoteBack to top

[Mod edit - quote of post above removed - see it^^ - SB]

That was absolutely what I was planning. Here is what I was thinking.

1) Send an email to the scammer, saying payment was taking care of, can't wait to get the keys and check out the place.
2) They will probably reply, "our TNT agent has not received payment"
3) Reply back, "yes he has, here is proof of receipt" *send a dummy confirmation email from the fake TNT email account that is almost an exact copy of their email*. The beauty of it is the email account I created is pretty much a logical variation of theirs. They gave me three types, and it is the fourth variation... Hehe.
4) Wait to see what chaos ensues.

I am anticipating the scammer will want to see a copy of the receipt, I will stall as long as possible...freaking out about the loss of all my money.

Any suggestions on where to take this?

I don't plan on contacting them on my fake TNT account, I suspect once he sees the address he'll reach out to me to try to threaten me to give him "his" money or try to cut a deal with me to get it from me somehow.

I'll delay this as long as possible until I get a mentor, that way I have someone to wingman(woman) me on this one.
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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 10:36 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

So, I went ahead and set up the account and pretended that I had sent the payment information. I forwarded the "confirmation" from my dummy TNT account to prove I had sent the money in. Hilarity ensued where the scammer insisted that I sent it to the wrong office. What makes it really funny is that the same typo to "R3play" the email to them, was sent both from both their Character and their Payment Fufillment Center. I would have slapped them for it, but I didn't want them to think I was on to them.

So I waited all night for them to email my dummy TNT account...but nothing. I thought they didn't bite, and were going to write me off as a loss.

But then this afternoon when I checked the dummy TNT account, I gotten an email from someone asking if I had received their payment. I googled the address and it was linked to a deleted Craigslist post for being flagged as scam/spam.

I replied of course using my dummy gmail account (to mask my IP). I will keep you posted with what happens next.
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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2008 12:49 am Reply with quoteBack to top

So the person who has been emailing my dummy TNT account has gotten really mad at me, because I keep telling them, that their transaction information is clearly fraudulent, and the MoneyOrder numbers are fakes.

They obviously didn't like being told that, because they have no switched to Romanian. Which I find odd...I will have some of my Romanian friends translate for me for authenticity.

Should I reply back to them in Romanian? Or should I choose a different language?

Do you guys get Romanian lads on here much?
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SlayerFaith
"Loves her joy stick"


Joined: 03 Mar 2005
Posts: 5778
Location: Vegas, baby!


PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2008 4:38 am Reply with quoteBack to top

US_Spook wrote:
they have no switched to Romanian.

Ahhh, you seem to have hooked a vlad rather than a lad. Vlads are Eastern European scammers, often Romanians. Word to the wise, your average vlad is much more intelligent and vastly more tech savvy than your average lad. They can still be baited, but do be sure that you are following the rules of safe baiting.

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2008 6:49 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks for the safe baiting tip. Their English was quite poor as well, so I was a bit surprised to see them type Romanian. Maybe I should reply in Nigerian? Smile

What I find interesting is that I have about 3 - 4 baits going on with 2 of their accounts (they have 2 different listings). They are doing mostly cut and paste jobs completely, but on a second scammer I noticed they left their script and personalized their response.

Is there any point in reporting any of their check mules to MoneyGram? Or is that acomplete waste of time?
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Breddan Butter
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2008 2:35 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

US_Spook wrote:
Maybe I should reply in Nigerian? Smile

That shouldn't be too difficult.
The official language of Nigeria is English.


However, there are 521 other languages spoken in that country.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Languages_of_Nigeria

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US_Spook
Master Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Ghost in the Shell


PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:54 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I replied in Russian. Hehe, let us say they haven't replied back nor have they attempted to contact my fake hijack account now. I am going to have the fake hijack account start to email their other accounts. Smile

That should really throw them off. I am hoping this Vlad will think he pissed someone off who is slowly going through their accounts announcing his presence.
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