Yet Another Craigslist Scam? (Vehicle Sale)

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by snorville, Jun 24, 2019.

  1. snorville

    snorville TDPRI Member

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    So classic story, I have a 2 year old with a daughter on the way, so I haven't ridden my motorcycle more than a handful of times in the last 2.5 years. I'm ready to let it go if I can find anyone who will take it off my hands. Besides safety concerns, I will be glad to see an end to insurance and registration fees.

    I put it on CL last week. I didn't even include very good photos with the original post because it's been sitting in the garage collecting dust, and I haven't had a chance to give it a good bath. I just wanted to gauge interest, and maybe it would be just what someone is looking for.

    I got someone emailing me who sounded genuinely interested, asking about the history, known issues, etc. I tell him what I can, but I did buy it used, so I point out that if he wants anything more we can pull a history with using the VIN number. I got an email from him this morning suggesting that I run the VIN search and send him the history. This is where it gets a little more interesting, he suggests a specific website he prefers to use, saying that he believes they provide the most accurate information. If the report is clear, he wants to proceed, and will reimburse me the cost of the VIN history along with my asking price for the bike. In the mean time, I can feel free to show the bike to any other interested buyers as he doesn't want to be a hindrance on my sale.

    I thought this sounded legitimate and fair. Just sounds like an honest person, and we've been emailing each other back and forth for a number of days. I click the link, and the website looks pretty legitimate. The fee to run a search is $25, not excessive and presumably this guy would pay me back. Just out of curiosity, I start doing some googling. Something seemed a little bit off, although I can't put my finger on it.

    After 5 minutes searching, I learned that VIN report scams are a thing. Apparently they are used to collect both fees and personal information from unsuspecting sellers. After you pay, the buyer evaporates into thin air and you never hear back fro them. It also turns out this website he suggested I use because he trusts it so much is only about 2 months old, not an NMVTIS-approved provider (I didn't know this was a thing), hosted overseas, and costs 2x-10x more than most approval providers. This is enough of a margin they could still buy a legitimate report, send it to you, and make money, so you couldn't blame the website for any wrongdoing.

    Anyway, on the off chance there was a legitimate misunderstanding, I offered to buy a report from NMVTIS-approved provider and send it to him, but not using an unapproved site like the one he proposed. I also pointed out that he hasn't yet seen or ridden the bike and only has my word to go on about condition, etc. He hasn't even asked for more pictures (remember, I just included some poor ones on the original post). I doubt I'll ever hear back from him.

    In retrospect, I think I had let the guy's honest sounding nature start to get the best of me and began to overlook things that would have been red flags if this had been requested of me in the first or second email he send.

    Dodging a $25 bullet might not be much in the long run, but it's something.

    BTW, the website he proposed was globalvin.com. I'm sure it will disappear and get cloned to another domain as soon as it stops working for them. Now that I am finally reading the language elsewhere on the website besides the front page, It's clear there might have been a bit of a language barrier by the author.
     
  2. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Scurvy dogs!
     
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  3. getbent

    getbent Telefied Ad Free Member

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    real buyers will be excited and COME OVER and look. People who can't are like those girlfriends (or would be girlfriends) who always have a reason for not getting together... when it is LOVE... nothing can keep you from it... same with buying stuff on CL... dawdlers and 'interrogators' are always tire kickers...

    When I see something I want, I MAYBE have one convo with them. Usually it is, I'll take it, send me your address can I come by at 2:30... or whatever...

    Good luck selling your bike... think about the guy who will 'reimburse you' BS. When I buy cars on CL and they are at a distance, I ask if they are willing to share the vin and I pull the carfax...
     
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  4. 8barlouie

    8barlouie Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Losing $25 would have been the least of your problems. You dodged a bullet. CL gives me the eebegeebies.
     
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  5. drf64

    drf64 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Listing a MC on CL is the WORST phish bait ever. I got all kinds of scam interest when I sold mine 2 years ago. The really funny thing is that I ended up selling it to my neighbor down the street! He just walked over with cash and rode it home. He gave me asking price too, so happy ending.
     
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  6. drf64

    drf64 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Here's my CL scam from last week. My son totalled his 2000 civic in a deer strike on the highway and needed another car immediately. He always filters out "dealer" when looking for a car because I've raised him right. He finds a nice looking 2005 Accord, 150k, lots of photos in a driveway with a neat, white picket fence background. So I text the seller and he sends me an address to meet. And so we drive off and......it's a used car lot. We pull in, double check the listing, yup, for sale by owner, get out and meet the guy, who says, no, absolutely, he's not a dealer. His friend is a dealer, but he is just an honest man selling a car. But the car in the picture is not really available right now and he wants us to look at ANOTHER Accord, nicer, leather seats, moon roof. I'm totally pissed at this point, but he insists we drive it, so he pulls a DEALER plate out of the trunk of HIS car and tells us to try it out. So this guy is making Baghdad Bob denials and pulling a bait and switch bs the likes of which would embarrass most anyone. I drove home and reported him.
     
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  7. Nightclub Dwight

    Nightclub Dwight Tele-Holic

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    I've never heard of the VIN scam before. Good that you listened to your instinct and sussed it out.

    I tend to agree with @getbent regarding behavior when one wants to buy something advertised for sale.

    If you do get a serious buyer who absolutely must have a VIN report, maybe offer to deduct the price they pay for the report that they get themselves from your overall sales price.
     
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  8. snorville

    snorville TDPRI Member

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    Agreed...if I think I've found something I want on CL, I'll be heading their way with with cash-in-hand as soon as they'll allow me.
     
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  9. 68tele

    68tele Friend of Leo's

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    CL is so very easy to use, even a Bad Dogger can do it: List your item, using your cell# as the only means of contact. Accept calls, ignore texters. Meet at neutral location (local PD or library). No muss/fuss. Don't overthink it.
     
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  10. drf64

    drf64 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Even texts don't bother me. If the texter starts to get all phishy I just block them. I can't pick up most of the day so texting works for me.
     
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  11. bcorig

    bcorig Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    My son in law sells and buys all sorts of things CL all the time. He knows how to judge buyers and sellers and is really skilled in figuring out who is serious.
    Took a month to sell my Infiniti for 33% higher than the trade in offer and just 2% under Bluebook. He pared down the “sort of” offers to one serious buyer who’d done his homework. I just wanted to unload it and he said “no”. I gave him 20% of the proceeds.
    For CL you have to do your homework, be very careful and patient and know the Market. These are characteristics worthy of any successful businessman.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2019
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  12. natec

    natec TDPRI Member

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    I've sold a Motorcycle, and a Jeep Wrangler on CL within the last 12 months and had multiple people attempting the scam you describe. After the second or third time, I ran a carfax myself and took a screenshot which I added to the photos in the ad. I used an eraser within 'ms paint' to cover any personal info that I didn't want to display. Subsequently when someone asked for a report - I directed them to those screenshots.
     
  13. davo8411

    davo8411 Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Someone tried to pull the VIN scam on me as well.
     
  14. Vibrolux59

    Vibrolux59 TDPRI Member

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    CL is a crapshoot. Always beware.
     
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  15. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I've sold a lot of things on CL, and I just don't get involved in any schemes. It has been the rare occasion that I have shipped anything sold there. When I have, it was only upon receipt of a US Postal Money Order for the entire amount including shipping. When I had CASHED the money order, I then shipped the item. I'm somewhat amazed that someone has wanted what I had for sale enough to trust me, since there was no way I would trust them. Hard way to be, but it's the only way for me.
     
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  16. Tuneup

    Tuneup Tele-Meister

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    Dang, I was only charging 15$.
     
  17. bcorig

    bcorig Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    I agree but this applies to any market.
     
  18. Dennyf

    Dennyf Tele-Afflicted

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    Most cl replies I get now are obviously either scams or phishing attempts. And are promptly sent to trash.
     
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  19. Pointmonger

    Pointmonger Tele-Holic

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    I got a dog off Craigslist. They didn't scam me for any personal info, but about two months after getting her, found out she had a congenital liver defect that ended up costing 5 figures to correct. Good dog, though.[​IMG]
     
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  20. Endless Mike

    Endless Mike Friend of Leo's

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    Everything is a thing.
     
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