I'm trying to sell my car (shameless plug) and this suspicious e-mail comes through:
Hello, I am Mark Greene,sales manager for Businessdays consulting International England.We specialize in purchase of cars for our customers here in Europe and across the globle.please get back to me if your car is still available for sale.
This immediately raises my fraud alert, so I play this really close:
Me: It is still for sale.
"Mark": Jason Purdy, How are you? I just got your mail and i really appreciate your urgent response, please indicate your best price for the car and also give me a comprehensive detail about the present condition of the car.As soon as this is done we will arrange for the payment and pick up.please,don't fail to indicate the price of the car and hoping to hear from you soon.
Me: The best price & details are already on the AutoTrader Ad... what more do you need?
"Mark": Jason Purdy, What is your last asking price of your car.
"Mark": Jason Purdy, How are you doing?My client was much impressed and he hopes that the car is serviced and well kept too.He can't wait to see the car.However,my client made out a cashier's check of($23,000)before he travelled to japan on a business trip,for a previous car and its shipment charges etc,but it was unfortunately sold.The amount on the check he deposited for the car is bigger than what should be paid to you now,so the check is now meant for the total expenses which includes the purchase of your car,the pick up of the car from its present location and the shipping charges/other necessary shipping arrangements.However he has instructed us to carry on with this transaction. So you're required to deduct the cost of your car($15,400)and send the balance of ($7,600) to my client via money Gram transfer to enable him offsett shippingcharges/arrangements.once the transaction is concluded.My agent will be coming for the pick up of the car from its present location,on an open vehicle and then drive to a pre paid shipper for shipment while title papers and other necessary documets will be handed to the agent at the time of pick up. ATTENTION: MY CLIENT INSTRUCTED THAT THE PICKUP AGENT WILL BE COMING OVER TO YOUR AREA OF LOCATION WITH SOMEONE WHO IS GOING TO CHECK THE RECENT CONDITIONS OF THE CAR ON HIS BEHALF.THAT YOU ARE TO HELP THEM WHEN THEY ARRIVE.... Please Confirm this and provide name,address and phone number for check payment to be delivered to you via courier mail. Have a nice day.
Me: I am not proceeding with this type of transaction. This is a popular form of fraud. If you want to buy the car, you will need to send a US Money Order for the exact amount of the sale. http://www.minnesotacars.com/fraudalert/20040901a.cfm
Update: vsergu nailed it. Gotta love these advance-fee fraud scams.