Millions of people turn to Craigslist as a convenient online venue for advertising personal items they have for sale, home sales and rentals and job opportunities. While the majority of the ads are legitimate, scammers have figured out that it’s a place that they can find unsuspecting victims and swindle them out of their money. This is in no way a negative reflection upon Craigslist because scammers are out there everywhere, but it pays to be aware and cautious when dealing with strangers advertisements over the internet. Here are five scams to watch out for on Craigslist Modesto
1. Fake home rentals on Modesto Craigslist
An advertisement for a three bedroom house for rent in the Modesto area looked like the ideal situation for Angela Kilgore and her family. The ad asked just $700 per month which was low for a home in the Oakdale neighborhood. The ad featured online photos of the home interior and exterior and it gave details including the address. Kilgore was instructed by the contact to send an email answering a few questions and the supposed owners would contact her if she was approved. She was given a telephone number of a person who claimed to be out of the country at the time and could not be present to show her the home but promised to mail keys after payment was made. Kilgore smelled a rat and checked further into the situation. She discovered that it was, in fact, a scam. This was really a rental home but the real owners knew nothing about the ad, which was a fake. The information from a previous ad that they had posted was used in the phony rental scam.
2. Modesto scammer arrested for rip off scheme
A Fresno man followed up on an advertisement posted for the sale of a rare BMX bicycle. Brian Constantino agreed to meet with the seller in a specified location to preview and purchase the bike. When they arrived, the truck was parked in a position that hid the truck bed and this is where the bike was supposed to be. Constantino pulled the money out of his wallet in the amount of $175, but before the trade was made, the seller took the money out of his hands and ran off. Constantino called the police after he attempted to chase the truck down as it sped away. Police located the thief and called Constantino to make a positive identification and the scammer was arrested.
3. Modesto Craigslist car wrap scam
One of the latest scams to hit Craigslist Modesto is an advertisement for a car wrap that is totally phony. Car wrapping is becoming more popular for those who want an alternative to a new paint job or for those who would like to have specialty logos or murals added to their vehicles. The con artists who are running the operation send a check for several thousand dollar amounts and they ask the worker to deposit it in their accounts. You’re supposed to keep some of the funds, then send the rest of the money via wire to a “graphic designer” who will in turn come and wrap your car. Banks will honor a check that is deposited, or at least many of them will. Once the check bounces, and it will, you’re responsible for making up the amount that was fraudulently taken by you, even though you thought it was legitimate. You are the person responsible for paying the full amount back. If you don’t make good on the money owed the bank, you may be arrested. They offer to pay you $300 weekly for wrapping your car to advertise for the company. Don’t be taken in by them.
4. Free Puppy scam on Craigslist Modesto
A man from Gustine saw an ad for a free puppy, but as it turned out, the pup was far from free. The Craigslist ad was put on the marketplace and the sellers said that there was no charge for the animal, but the new owner would have to pay the shipping fees. The seller promised to reimburse him after the animal was received. The unidentified man wired the money. He didn’t receive the dog and ended up paying $2,700 to the scammer according to the police report that he filed.
5. Watch out for fake Disneyland tickets on Craigslist Modesto
Scammers are advertising tickets for Disneyland for sale at a discount price of $90 each. More than a dozen victims thought that they were getting a good deal until they tried to use them and found out that they were either fake or that they had previously been used. A family found out too late because they had already booked their room and traveled to their destination. When they got to the gates of the entrance, they were informed that the tickets would not get them into the park. The tickets were electronic and there was no way to trace who had sold them or to get any reparations for their loss.