Sure signs of online auction scams - CBS46 News

Sure signs of online auction scams

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ATLANTA (CONSUMER ALERT) -

You can find nearly anything for sale on eBay or Craigslist.

Unfortunately, you're also likely to find scams; Most often, counterfeit check scams.

US Postal Inspector Kim Gordon explained how they work.

"They get a response via email by someone that says they are very interested in purchasing the item. They told them they are going to send them a check," she said.

When the seller receives the check, it is written for more than the price of the item being purchased - sometimes hundreds more.

"The suspect calls them again and says, 'I sent you hundreds of dollars more. Would you please deposit the money in your bank account," Gordon said.

Then victims are asked to wire the extra money to an address.

"They find out later from the bank that it was a bad check. It has bounced because it was a counterfeit check, and they are on the hook for all of that money," Gordon said.

Postal inspectors say consumers need to proceed with caution when using auction sites.

"There is a very large warning that appears on Craigslist the minute you submit ad placement. The word warning is there and it says be weary of foreign responders to your ad," Gordon said.

You should also be skeptical if someone sends extra money for an item after you've already agreed on the selling price.

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