As far as Craigslist scams Go, Fort Wayne, Indiana seems to have fewer than most places. That certainly doesn't mean that they don't exist there, though. As a matter of fact, you can read about five of the more recent scams that have occurred in the area below. Most of them are the ones that you're familiar with. They involve real estate scams, concert tickets that aren't legitimate, and sending fake checks to pay for merchandise. If you read all the way through, you will find one that doesn't seem to show up in every city involving babysitting, of all things. If that doesn't make you sit up straight and pay attention, there isn't much that will. One thing that you should always remember is that when it comes to people who are willing to scam you out of your money, there's virtually nothing they won't do in order to get it. It's always good to remember that when something seems like it's too good to be a reality, it probably is. In addition, when someone is feeding you a sob story, like the guy in the babysitter story, it might be hard, but the best thing you can do is check your feelings at the door and let those little red flags going off in the back of your mind come straight to the front.
1. Don’t Buy Event Tickets on Craigslist
So many people in the Fort Wayne, Indiana area have been ripped off by the same guy using different aliases and contact information. That being said, the way he actually cons them out of their money is almost always the same. He usually claims that he has tickets to some coveted event, gives an arbitrary reason why he can't go, and then offers to sell the tickets for an amount far below market value. He has people send him the money and then they never get the tickets or what they do get is not valid.
2. Rental Issues
People that fell for the Craigslist ad that offered a three-bedroom, two-bath house for rent for $700 a month wish that they had looked into things a little bit more before they sent the money. As is usually the case, the scammer requested that the money be sent ahead of time. That should have been enough to ward most people off but instead, several people went ahead and sent the money in. This is like so many other cases. The person that posted the ad did not own the house. In fact, the house wasn't even for rent in the first place.
3. More Fake Checks
It's hard to understand why people are still willing to accept checks from anybody they try to do business with on Craigslist, but they do. More often than not, these are not legitimate transactions. It's far more common that the person in question is trying to scam you out of your merchandise and leave you high and dry. In addition, when the bank finds out the check isn’t good, they’re going to expect you to pay for it. The bank may or may not let you deposit that check, but when they discover that it won’t clear, they expect you to fork over the cash to make it right.
4. Will the Rental Scams Ever Stop
Here's another rental scam in the area. It runs in much the same way as all the others do, stating that there's property for rent at a price that's almost a steal, asking people to send in the money ahead of time. Plenty of people do exactly that and then when they try to move in, they find out that the property is not available for rent, nor does the actual owner know anything about it. When will people learn?
5. The Babysitter Scam
At least this guy was creative. Instead of doing the same old scams that have been done to death in virtually every place across the country, he came up with an advertisement on Craigslist asking for babysitters for his three-year-old daughter, one that he of course did not have. He then set up public places to meet with these people for interviews, asking them to fork over $20 so he could do a background check on them, saying that he simply couldn't afford to do a background check on everyone on his own dime. Most of them complied. He never did any background checks, nor did he have anyone to babysit, but he did take the money.
Written by Garrett Parker
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