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Subject: Warning about a shipping scam rss

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Keith Thomasson
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This warning is aimed primarily at retailers who deal internationally, although it could still apply to domestic sales.

If someone offers to buy games from you and offers to collect using their courier, this is not necessarily a problem.I have made such arrangements in the past and had no problems.

However, if they ask you to charge their card for the courier cost and then wire the charge to the shipping company (typically via Western Union) because they cannot pay them directly for some reason, beware. This could be someone using a stolen credit card to get you to process a payment and then send cash to a Western Union address that is going to end up in their pockets. You're basically being asked to help them launder stolen money.

I was made such an offer this morning and refused point blank to do it. It was made pretty obvious that it was a scam because they stated their shipping company wanted £650, and they were even willing to give me an additional £100 for the trouble of paying on their behalf. As I had told them shipping would be £130, this was clearly not sensible.

Unsurprisingly, they have not been back in touch. For the record, the contact name given was Richard Morris, which sounds English, but the written English was not good enough to be a native English speaker. The delivery address given was the Central Store of Cyprus in Nicosia.

You might think that this is such an obvious scam that nobody would fall for it, but if that was the case, they wouldn't keep trying. Sometimes the lure of the business may look too good to be true - which it clearly is in this case.

By a strange coincidence, my wife received a gift promotions magazine today, which included an article warning of this very scam taking place in the gift trade. If that had arrived a couple of hours after I had fallen for it, I would have been doubly embarrassed.

Keith Thomasson
Heron Games
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Boaty McBoatface
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But imagine the fun you have denied your wife.
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Keith Thomasson
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slatersteven wrote:
But imagine the fun you have denied your wife.

Oh yes, she could have been dining out of that for a long time!
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Dave Heberer
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Boy, that escalated quickly. I mean that really got out of hand fast.
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I'm amazed that Western Union still is doing business. It might as well be sending money into the ether. As far as I can tell, any business transaction that ends with "And then you send me money through western union" is a scam.
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Thomas Taylor
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i7dealer wrote:
I'm amazed that Western Union still is doing business. It might as well be sending money into the ether. As far as I can tell, any business transaction that ends with "And then you send me money through western union" is a scam.


Trust me dude, as a San Diegan, there are Western Unions EVERYWHERE for the illegals to wire money home (usually Mexico) to family. The 619 probably keeps them profitable by itself.

Also, thanks to Heron Games for the heads up. I ordered from you once overseas and it worked out great, outstanding service. Keep up the good work.
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Caleb
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How are you going to invest in Nigerian diamonds and Indonesian gold mines then?

ninja
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David
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Wise men say, forgiveness is divine, but never pay full price for late pizza.
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You mean I shouldn't wire money to help the prince of Nigeria save his crown and fight rebels, and get double my money back when his assets are unfrozen?

arrrh
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David
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Seriously, though. Thanks for the heads up from everyone here.
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Jonathan Warren
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Someone should warn
Richard Morris
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Someone is using his credit card! whistle
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James O'Donovan
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A serious LOL is due on that one :laugh::laugh:
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Green Knight Games
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Here's an email we received recently:

Dear Sir/Ma

We are Pinnacle Trading International, we deal on varieties of board games. we found your website and we would like to purchase some items from you ASAP. We selected some items from your online catalog, We would like you to make an invoice for payment and deliver the items to Dubai . Here is the list of items needed :


Nuns on the Run x 50 copies
Ilium x 50 copies
Empire Builder x 50 copies


It's a standard scam. Interesting choice of games, though.
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Will
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This is not just in board games. Basically, anytime anyone offers to pay or do anything with western union, red flags should go up.

A similar common scam (especially if you sell higher priced items), someone offers to give you extra beyond what you are offering for an item, if you just cash a check for them. This check is valued at higher than what your item is. The check is fraudulent, they need a go-between to cash it so they don't get in trouble themselves(and they are probably in another country anyway they need someone in USA to cash it). The check might clear at first, but a week or two later, the clearance will be revoked and the money taken back out of your account.

People falling for this scam lose both the item and the money.
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Aron F.
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sbilbey wrote:

Nuns on the Run x 50 copies
Ilium x 50 copies
Empire Builder x 50 copies
[/i]

It's a standard scam. Interesting choice of games, though.


If they pay you for these games, that has to be far more money than the shipping cost.

The original post seemed like a somewhat plausible scam, since they probably bought a single game, but then are trying to launder money through the shipping. But, I don't understand this one.
 
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Green Knight Games
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uigrad wrote:

The original post seemed like a somewhat plausible scam, since they probably bought a single game, but then are trying to launder money through the shipping.

With £130 shipping, I would guessing it wasn't a single game.

uigrad wrote:
sbilbey wrote:

Nuns on the Run x 50 copies
Ilium x 50 copies
Empire Builder x 50 copies
[/i]

It's a standard scam. Interesting choice of games, though.


If they pay you for these games, that has to be far more money than the shipping cost.

The original post seemed like a somewhat plausible scam, since they probably bought a single game, but then are trying to launder money through the shipping. But, I don't understand this one.


Either: They pay by credit card and then the money is recinded a few days after shipping (stolen card)
Or: They pay by bank transfer and the funds suddenly disappear (illegal funds)
Or: The payment seems ok, but just before shipping they suddenly reduce the order and require a refund, usually through a different payment channel (thus laundering their funds)

What was wrong with the order?
- large quantities of obscure products
- yahoo email with a different spelling to the 'business' name
- quick Google of 'Pinnacle Trading International' shows they are based in California and deal in food
- country of destination
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Keith Thomasson
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uigrad wrote:
The original post seemed like a somewhat plausible scam, since they probably bought a single game, but then are trying to launder money through the shipping. But, I don't understand this one.

It was actually 20 games, and they must have checked the site because they ordered A Few Acres of Snow, Catacombs, Pantheon and Steam Map Expansion #1. As those were all new, a few copies of each seemed reasonable and made it look like they knew what they asking for. They didn't make the order sound unreasonable.
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Tao Wong
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How come all your scammers take the time to make it sound reasonable. Mine don't. I feel hurt.

I want a better class of scammer damn it.

keiththomasson wrote:
uigrad wrote:
The original post seemed like a somewhat plausible scam, since they probably bought a single game, but then are trying to launder money through the shipping. But, I don't understand this one.

It was actually 20 games, and they must have checked the site because they ordered A Few Acres of Snow, Catacombs, Pantheon and Steam Map Expansion #1. As those were all new, a few copies of each seemed reasonable and made it look like they knew what they asking for. They didn't make the order sound unreasonable.
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Green Knight Games
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And if you're still reading this thread, here's a real-life story copied from another forum (I've removed any name information):

Quote:
I deal with Dubai a lot and over the last year had much interest in people wanting to become distributors of my product. I sell [product-removed] to dubai about 3-4 times a month, mainly to ex-pats.

It came as no surprise, when I received an enquiry for one of my [products] that cost £795. I was asked what the price was and I replied back.

A few days later I got an e-mail back saying they wanted 100, no requests for further discounts or anything. My business has been struggling as the banks have dried up most lending avenues so me and my business partner saw this as a lifeline. After all Dubai is a very rich country right?

I sent the invoice in the belief that I will only get excited when the money from this order hit my account and give us the lifeline we desperetly needed.

I spoke to a supplier about the order that told me it may be a scam, so I googled it only to find it was too good to be true. Basically they pay more than the invoice amount into the bank and then request the difference back to them by BACS. However they have been paying cheques in to the bank in the UK. Now obviously if the cheque did hit my account I would have let it bounce and thought nothing of his request for the repayment of the overpayment as the cheque would bounce anyway - right?

An e-mail a few days later confirmed my suspicions that it was a scam - the order was reduced to 40 units and he said 'please confirm receipt of £79,500'.

No cheque had hit my account and to be fair I forgot about it.

Then last thursday i tried to use my debit card online and it declined (my personal bank). I tried to go online and look at my account and could not access it so I called them up presuming the systems had gone down.

I was told then that they had suspended ALL my bank accounts and gave no explanation as to why. I had no cash, no means of paying for anything and no warning. I was told to go to my local branch which was going to be the next day - I had no cash, no petrol and no food in to feed my kids (everything I buy I pay for by card!).

I went into my bank and saw a customer services manager who told me a large cheque had been paid into my account and that it was flagged as a fraudulent cheque and they had suspended ALL my accounts until further investigations were completed. I explained the story to him and asked how a LIMITED business bank account that the cheque got paid into meant that my PERSONAL bank accounts with them also got investigated!!

Anyway after being treated like a criminal I finally withdrew some cash.

The next day i went in for more cash and they informed me that they were giving me 14 days notice that they intend to close my accounts on the 30th April!!! To be fair I wasn't bothered as the way they treated me why the hell would I use [them] again. Then on Monday I went to get a new bank account, I got declined at every bank bar [name-removed] and even then I only got a basic account. Then 3 days after I transferred all my payments and direct debits to the [new bank] they closed my account.

My business partner tried to open a new business account for us, all got refused because barclays have flagged us now with 'Fraud'.

I have no means of paying anything at the minute, my rent is now overdue and I have to try pay it out of my mums account. I can't pay my suppliers and I can't pay my basic bills!! I can't even now receive any money so I am so broke I am near to tears. The money from my Child maintenance won't pay into any other account other than one with my name .

Moral of the story - Don't let anyone have your bank details even for business, because it can effect you personally. I can't even feed my children at the minute as i have no money so I have had to send them to live with their dad and next week I will get evicted from my home as I have no where to pay my money into!

 
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