This particular scam has been floating around the 'net for quite a while, (I was "baptized" over a year ago).
Here's how it goes:
Is this item still available for sale and in good condition? I will like to make an immediate purchase of the item if still available and will be making the payment by a Certified check, I am comfortable with the asking price for the item and will make the payment as soon as possible.
If you are willing to sell this item for me understand this condition, you should get back to me with your full name and address and also your phone so i can have the payment mailed to you. A pick up of the item will be schedule as soon as the payment process for item has been completed.
I await your response asap.
I await your reply. Hello,am can only pay via check at the moment. kindly get back if this is okay by you"
Please note that the words and grammar can possibly change, but the underlying message is always the same.
This is what this scam does:
"The problem with this scam is that the checks are fake or forged. They usually are for much more than the amount of the item purchased. They ask you to cash the check, take out what is owed (plus a little more for your trouble) then send them the balance. They don't care about the merchandise. It's a scam to get you to cash a counterfeit check or money order for them." (- dingo)
"The check will be made out in a much higher amount and the change will be asked for when they pick up the items. The check will take a few days to bounce, and then you'll owe the bank, and be out your item." (- naturallynatalies)
Whether you get this message on MySpace, Craigslist, Ebay, or elsewhere, REPORT IT.
DO NOT RESPOND WITH YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION.
Things to remember:
1) A legitimate buyer will never pay more than the cost of the item + shipping. (If they offer, or ask to, BEWARE).
2) You can always say that you do not take certified checks. (Please note that this scam has also hit money orders!).
3) Most legitimate buyers will go to your online store and not contact you directly about payment options. THEY CAN ALWAYS READ ABOUT YOUR POLICIES AT YOUR SHOP.
This warning inspired by an Etsy forum thread started by borneodiva. Click here to read it.