Thursday, February 16, 2017

Recognizing scams

Most scams attempts involve one or more of the following:

  • Email or text from someone that is not local to your area.
  • Vague initial inquiry, e.g. asking about "the item." Poor grammar/spelling.
  • Western Union, Money Gram, cashier check, money order, paypal, shipping, escrow service, or a "guarantee."
  • Asking for a FEE in order for you to receive money is the most common scam.
  • Inability or refusal to meet face-to-face to complete the transaction.

Examples of Scams

1. Someone claims your transaction is guaranteed, that a buyer/seller is officially certified, OR that a third party of any kind will handle or provide protection for a payment:
  • These claims are fraudulent, as transactions are between users only.
  • The scammer will often send an official looking (but fake) email that appears to come from craigslist or another third party, offering a guarantee, certifying a seller, or pretending to handle payments.
2. Distant person offers a genuine-looking (but fake) cashier's check:
  • You receive an email or text (examples below) offering to buy your item, pay for your services in advance, or rent your apartment, sight unseen and without meeting you in person.
  • A cashier's check is offered for your sale item as a deposit for an apartment or for your services.
  • Value of cashier's check often far exceeds your item—scammer offers to "trust" you, and asks you to wire the balance via money transfer service.
  • Banks will cash fake checks AND THEN HOLD YOU RESPONSIBLE WHEN THE CHECK FAILS TO CLEAR, sometimes including criminal prosecution.
  • Scams often pretend to involve a 3rd party (shipping agent, business associate, etc.).
3. Someone requests wire service payment via Western Union or MoneyGram:
  • Deal often seems too good to be true, price is too low, or rent is below market, etc.
  • Scam "bait" items include apartments, laptops, TVs, cell phones, tickets, other high value items.
  • Scammer may (falsely) claim a confirmation code from you is needed before he can withdraw your money.
  • Common countries currently include: Nigeria, Romania, UK, Netherlands—but could be anywhere.
  • Rental may be local, but owner is "travelling" or "relocating" and needs you to wire money abroad.
  • Scammer may pretend to be unable to speak by phone (scammers prefer to operate by text/email).
4. Distant person offers to send you a cashier's check or money order and then have you wire money:
  • This is ALWAYS a scam in our experience—the cashier's check is FAKE.
  • Sometimes accompanies an offer of merchandise, sometimes not.
  • Scammer often asks for your name, address, etc. for printing on the fake check.
  • Deal often seems too good to be true.
5. Distant seller suggests use of an online escrow service:
  • Most online escrow sites are FRAUDULENT and operated by scammers.
  • For more info, do a google search on "fake escrow" or "escrow fraud."
6. Distant seller asks for a partial payment upfront, after which they will ship goods:
  • He says he trusts you with the partial payment.
  • He may say he has already shipped the goods.
  • Deal often sounds too good to be true.
7. Foreign company offers you a job receiving payments from customers, then wiring funds:

  • Foreign company may claim it is unable to receive payments from its customers directly.
  • You are typically offered a percentage of payments received.
  • This kind of "position" may be posted as a job, or offered to you via email.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Your New Year's Resolution: Become a Good Samaritan

What it Means to Be a Good Samaritan

  • A compassionate person who unselfishly helps others, especially strangers. 
  • A person who voluntarily gives help to those in distress or need. 
  • A person who helps other people and especially strangers when they have trouble.

At this time of year, it's hard not to think about making a long list of New Year's resolutions. Usually it's the same ol', same ol' on everyone's goal list: lose weight, eat healthier, exercise more often, spend more time with your kids, become more financially secure.

While many of these goals are important, and even life-changing, there's one goal we could all work on -- and fairly easily, too -- and that is simply becoming a better person. It doesn't necessarily take a lot of money or a lot of effort, but there are small ways to make a difference in someone's life.


In the news, we generally see articles and news segments about politics, disasters, deaths, and the biggest news stories are centered around violence, terror threats or general sense of fear.

We are trying to start a movement and raise awareness that there is still GOOD people in today's world. The news portray more bad than good making people depressed and have a negative outlook in life, so we want people to know that there is still hope and not everything is scary or bleak.

Since 2007, has been a cyber begging and crowdfunding website dedicated to helping those in need.The people who post on this website are not crowdfunding to fund their projects, not trying to make more money for their business....they are people who are in dire need of help!

Become a Good Samaritan by going to and making a contribution to any posting that pulls your heart strings or people who you feel truly need help.

Even if it is $1, every donation counts. Doing so will make you a better person, lift your spirits and give some hope to the person who you donated to.

Open your heart and show that there is still good in today's world. If you are in distress and need of help, please feel free to join our community and create a page on our site today!

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