Your Question: Is Craigslist Safe? Are There Any Scams I Should Be Alert To?
Professor Tate is here with an update on some NEW scams being used on Craigslist:
Craigslist can be an awesome tool. However, it can also be dangerous. There are so many scammers ready to pounce on Craigslist! Take note of 2 of the top new and growing Craigslist scams.
1. Moving Companies
Everyone wants to save a buck or two. So when you start calling around to different moving companies and discover how expensive they are, turning to Craigslist for a bargain seems like a good idea. But be careful. Some scammers are using these ads to find the right family to rip off.
One family from Douglas County, Georgia planned to follow the movers they hired off of Craigslist to their new home. The “movers” (two men with a U-Haul) separated from the family once they hit the freeway, and took all of their belongings with them.
Hours later, when it was clear to the family what had happened, they called the police, who later found the abandoned (and now empty) U-Haul. The family’s losses were estimated to be at around $75,000.
2. Rental or Home Listings
Not long after John Darr of New Albany, Indiana listed his home for sale, people started walking around his yard, even peering right through the windows on his porch.
John later found out that scammers had used his listing to create a rental listing of his house on Craigslist. The scammer posted his home on Craigslist as a cozy home for rent for just $600 per month. All you had to do was correspond and transfer a security deposit.
The Craigslist post made many false claims. One such claim was that the owners were moving out of the country for a few years and needed to lease it out in their absence. The scammer offered false contact information. During correspondence with interested “applicants”, the scammer was able to obtain personal information and even arrange money transfers
Some helpful hints if you’re a craigslist user: If it sounds too good to be true, be cautious! If you’re asked to wire money to someone whom you’ve never even met, and who makes up some elaborate story as to why you cannot meet face to face, you should be wary! Be careful and use common sense!
You asked, now you know!
-Professor Reel S. Tate