Thousands of classifieds advertisers make use of Junk Mail’s services daily. Advertisers receive hundreds of responses on their adverts. The majority of responses are from genuine potential buyers, but there are also responses from spammers and scammers. Some Junk Mail users don’t always spot these responses and open up themselves to be victims of scams.
Since we don’t want our users to be caught by these criminals, we’re covering 3 questions that you should ask when you receive a Junk Mail advert response today. We’re pretty sure that you’ll appreciate these guidelines.
Is the advert response that I received Spam?
This applies to e-mail responses to Junk Mail Adverts. Spam responses on adverts are quite easy to spot. They’re usually send from addresses like “firstname.lastname@example.org”, “email@example.com”, “firstname.lastname@example.org”, “email@example.com” and various other variants. They love webmased e-mail services and their e-mails usually contain strange requests or content that is not relevant to being a potential buyer for the item that you’re advertising. They often contain broken English and sometimes contain links to data mining or other dodgy websites.
Spam is not a new internet phenomenon and has been around ever since the invention of e-mail. If you do receive a response from a spam e-mail address, ignore the response, report the e-mail address to our Customer Care department so we can investigate and follow up and delete the response. It’s our aim to keep the spam responses that our users receive to the minimum.
Is the advert response that I received from a Scammer?
This applies to e-mail, SMS and phone responses. So you get a call, receive an SMS or receive an e-mail from someone who is interested in the item that you’re advertising. They sound extremely eager to buy the item from you and are very adamant sending a driver to collect the item or asking you to ship the item to them (usually to a foreign country). They don’t even want to view your item, they just want your banking details so they can deposit the funds into your account.
All this sounds to good to be true, right? Well, whenever you get a response from someone who behaves in this way proceed carefully. Scammers send out fake confirmation SMSes, fax through fake deposit slips, e-mail through fake EFT confirmations, claim to have made payments into your account via Paypal, Western Union or other international financial services.
The golden rule when it comes to this is: Don’t hand over or ship the item unless you are 100% sure that the funds you received are available for your use in the Bank Account. Contact your bank directly and ask them whether the deposit you received is a genuine or a fake one. If the potential buyer has deposited a cheque, don’t hand over the item until the funds clear in your account. Remember: Be Smart, Be Savvy, Be Safe!
Am I selling my item on my terms?
Remember: sell your item on your terms. Don’t let someone who responded to your advert dictate the terms. If someone claims they can’t you call you back because they don’t have airtime or that they can’t collect the item because they need petrol money, don’t give it to them. If a potential buyer asks you drive the vehicle into a dodgy area, don’t do it.
Arrange to meet the potential buyer at your nearest police station if you don’t feel comfortable receiving them at your home. Try to have a friend with you when you meet a potential buyer and if you are meeting them at your house, try not to let them in an area where they’d see all your valuables and electronics.
Well, there you have it, 3 Questions to ask yourself when you receive an advert response. We trust that you find this information useful. Earlier in the week we covered 5 Questions to ask yourself when responding to a Junk Mail advert, so make sure that you check it out if you’re buying items on Junk Mail.
If you encounter any fraudulent activity while using Junk Mail, please report it our Customer Care Department via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephonically on 012-3423840 x2295 (during office hours).
Need more scam info? Feel free to check out the Junk Mail Safety & Security page for links to more scam warning blog posts on the Junk Mail blog.