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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Online Scam


Mudah.my is a useful website to buy and sell things in Malaysia. However, lately I noticed there are false purchasers using the website as well.
Usually this happens when you want to sell used mobile phones. Earlier I wanted to sell one, and I got 3 emails from overseas, purportedly from UK, wanting to buy the mobile phone from me. Of course I didn't entertain since I wanted to sell to Malaysians only, and I didn't think much about it. Then lately I wanted to sell a cooler bag, one that is used to keep cold drinks for picnics, and I got an email from someone supposedly named "Dr Sarah Smith", wanting to buy. I thought, maybe it's a foreigner in Malaysia who wanted to buy, so I responded to the email, naming a place to meet for COD (cash on delivery).
I got a reply email from her and she said she is from Scotland, but she would like to buy it for her son who is now in Nigeria. She asked me to ship to Nigeria by Poslaju. In the email, she also asked me to reply to her the price including shipping, my full name, my bank account number, handphone contact number so that she can transfer the money to me. I immediately reported the email as spam, and deleted it.
A few things made me very suspicious:
1. The "Dr" in the email. Usually if you want to buy something you wouldn't even tell the seller you are a doctor or whatever. This person uses a Dr title to improve her credibility.
2. She is supposedly from Scotland, but the English grammar is atrocious. She wrote: "I awaits your reply..." I remember the last time I also got an email from another guy wanting to buy my handphone, who is also from the UK with an English name, but the English was terrible.
3. Asking elaborate details of full name, bank account, handphone number- all these details are needed for bank verification when you call in to do banking transaction.
So, be very careful with all these personal details, especially when dealing with foreigners. For all you know these people are already in Malaysia, otherwise how would they know about Poslaju? And I am just thankful that I didn't fall into their trap.

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