BBB warns new Craigslist scam could cost you thousands

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - The better business bureau is warning folks of the latest Craigslist scam that can cost you thousands.

Crooks are advertising things like cars and boats on Craigslist, and telling people to go to a third party website and wire money for those items. Buyers would never see get their purchases, or their money back.

"What happens is you find an item that you like and you are to email the seller. When you email the seller they advise you to go to this website," said Gigi Turner, regional director for the BBB of Central Georgia and the CSRA.

Turner said that website looks legitimate, but its just a front.

"The seller will inform the consumer that the reason we need you to use the e-easy yard sale is for logistic purposes, they just want to go through that company for all of their sales," said Turner.

That's when the customer gets swindled.

"Of course the consumer sends their money and they don't get their boat or their car or whatever it is and they've lost that money," Turner said.

Turner said there are some things you can do to avoid getting scammed on Craigslist.

  • Make sure you meet the seller before making purchases
  • Avoid 3rd party transactions
  • Never give out your financial information to a seller
  • Never wire funds or use a pre-paid card to pay someone that you don't know

"Anytime you are asked to wire transfer money to someone you don't know, it is not good," Turner said. "It usually results in loss of funds."

Turner said it's very difficult to trace wire funds and pre-paid debit cards and those funds are usually never returned.  Buyers should always be careful when they're making purchases online.

"We're not asking you as a consumer to keep an eye out for easy yard sale," Turner said. "Keep an eye out for anything suspicious. that's what they're looking to do.

If you have questions, you can always call the local BBB office at (478) 742-7999 or go to their website.

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