For people that are old enough to remember what it was like before the internet came into existence, it actually took a little bit of effort to communicate with someone. You either had to find a telephone and call them, not to mention being lucky enough to catch them at home, or you had to go talk to them face-to-face. You couldn't leave voicemails or texts and there certainly wasn't any social media. Today, all of that has changed. Many people believe that it has changed the world for the better because it allows people to communicate much more readily. That being said, it also makes it easier to scam people out of their hard-earned cash. Below are five of the most interesting Craigslist scams involving Inland Empire and the surrounding area.
For some reason, people just can't get enough of these housing scams on Craigslist. Despite the fact that they happen all the time, in every large city and small town across the United States, people still turn to Craigslist in order to find houses for sale or rent. In this particular case, someone was looking for a house to rent. There's no doubt that you know the story by now. The individual in question found an ad on Craigslist, the price was too good to be true, they went ahead and sent the money anyway, and the rest is history.
2. Cars for Money…
In another fairly recent case, a person was interested in purchasing a car that had been advertised on the site. Thinking that it was a legitimate sale, the person went through what they thought were the proper channels and eventually handed over the asking price of $9,000. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a bogus sale for a car that didn't even exist. The worst part is that the buyer never did get their $9,000 back and they probably never will.
3. Employment Scams
This is another one that just continues to be a problem. It involves a person posting a fake ad for a job and then paying people with fake checks. Of course, they always want a certain portion of that money back so they want you to deposit the check in your bank account and then turn around and write them another one. It's hard to imagine why anyone still falls for this, but they do. The point is, when that fake check doesn't clear, you have to cover the entire thing plus the check that you've already written.
4. Selling a Car that Isn’t Actually for Sale
Here's another one that will leave you shaking your head. An ad came up on Craigslist for a 1967 Ford Mustang. Obviously, this is a car that a lot of people would love to get their hands on. Someone did respond to the ad and paid the price that was requested in order to get the car. The problem is, they didn't take a witness with them and they handed over the cash without getting a bill of sale. Now the car is being listed as stolen and they're on the hook for the money they spent, not to mention being without a car. In a worst-case scenario, you could also have a terrible time trying to prove that you're completely innocent and had nothing to do with knowingly driving a stolen car.
5. Crooks Can be Creative
Sometimes it's amazing how creative criminals can really be. It makes you wonder why they can't just put all that creativity to use and get a real job as opposed to finding new and innovative ways to scam others out of money they worked hard to earn. On Craigslist, people are coming up with all kinds of new twists on housing and employment scams that are designed to keep people guessing. The problem has gotten so bad in the Inland Empire area that local news stations have been doing stories about it in order to warn people. At some point, most people will probably cease to use the site because it's gotten so bad that it's almost impossible to place or respond to an ad without being scammed.
Written by Garrett Parker
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