There have been a number of reports of attempts by a scammer(s) to extract money from advertisers on SMEX. The location of the scammer 'appears' to be the UK, but more likely Nigeria. They use a fake English sounding name, reply to your ad and then string you along in an email exchange with a variety of excuses, then ask for some money or banking details one way or another. They also commonly ask for money transfer via Western Union (Note: While Western Union is a genuine and reputable company, if the scammer specifies this method, then be very alert to a possible scam).
The typical mode of operation is they say they just tried to pay the money but can't unless you pay the agent fee or costs beforehand and then say they will include this money when they pay the full amount to you. Or "I am at sea and cannot get to a bank or Post Office" or similar. The scammer typically says that they will have an agent either pay you, or to inspect/pick up the items. If the reply suggests using an agent it is highly likely it is a scam. They also misuse or mis-spell words common to items typically sold thru SMEX, making it obvious they do not know what they are talking about.
If you see this sort of activity THIS IS A SCAM
DO NOT send any money or give out any financial details.
The name(s) used by the scammer(s) vary, and may change quickly. Known scammers include:
- 'Sean Hankel' with email 'email@example.com'
If you have any suspicions, just Google their name or email address.
This notice is placed in the public interest. And, as stated in the SMEX standard T&Cs, it is the buyer that usually pays any delivery or shipment fees, not the seller (and especially in advance)!