At the moment there is a post over in the "Your Art" urging us to go to ***********.com and once there subscribe so as to receive postage (greeting cards and such) from Russia, Ukraine or Belarus.
I can't say I studied their website in detail; didn't load it, because I don't want even MORE malware on my machine and I'm not that el33t to surf with impunity in all corners of the web. Searched "around it" as it were, it's not a famous malware distribution center. But, my paranoid nature struck again, and for some reason, I suspect there's something not quite on the up and up with this.
Though to be honest, I can't say now what makes me think this or why.
So yeah, the purpose of this post is to describe a very peculiar kind of scam (it has NOTHING to do with ********.com which I AM NOT accusing of anything) and urge you to do the same. I trust the subject of surreal scams is interesting enough.
And the scam that I'm about to relate is so famous in my part of the world, that to fall to it now is synonymous with needing to win a Darwin award.
"We look to buy old german, Singer sewing machines. 40000EURO. We request seriousness" the announcement would go. Now, it's not unlikely actually that a Singer sewing machine may be lying in my attic somewhere. Though old- about pre-WW2 or so-, and not manufactured anymore (I think), they are not that rare yet. And certainly not worth 40000EUR. This is alarm bell one.
So the mark gives the call, wishing to sell the Singer. Excellent says the fella on the other side, can you check whether there's a serial number in such and such location? The mark checks and there is (these are industrial made machines, all alike). So what's the serial number the con asks, and whatever the mark responds, it's a-ok and worth buying. So the con says excellent, I'll be able to reach you in a week or so.
After a day or two, the con calls the mark again. Apparently there's some other person, who the con claims not to be able to contact directly for some reason, who also has a Singer machine. So could you check the serial number on that machine, and if it's so and so buy that as well for whatever that person asks- it won't be much; don't tell them the real value of the piece- and when I'll get to you I'll buy them both for 80000EUR?
The mark is supposed to say sure! And they contact this other person who's old or isolated or whatever might look like a plausible reason for not having a phone. And they are willing of course to part with the sewing machine, but for no less than say, ooh, 3000EUR (or whatever sum the mark is likely to be able to part with). Sure thing the mark would say! After all in a few days the fella on the phone will buy that machine for 40000EUR, which gives 36000EUR profit!
Do you think the fella on the phone shows up when the week is up?
Beats Nigerian princes for aesthetics, don't you think?
The whole point of this is lost if you keep it a secret.