Are People That Stupid?

| July 13, 2009 | 1 Comment

Weak Economy Scams Abound

Yesterday, The Capital ran a front page article about a West African rental scam. The gist is that someone in West Africa claims to have an apartment or home for rent in the area and since they can’t be there to show the property, they request money as a “security deposit” before sending you the keys to look at it yourself. Of course the rents are unbelievably low.   I applaud The Capital and any other source that exposes scams–it helps us all out.

But the question I need to ask is are there really that many gullible people out there that fall for something like this on Craigslist? After all, the people seeing these ads are likely computer literate–makes sense if they are surfing on Craigslist. And anyone with an email address has received those “I am the sole descendent of royalty in some unheard of country and I want to split my billions with you my random Internet friend” emails.

It is no surprise that scams are on the rise proportionately to the economy’s decline. But really, everyone needs to take a good hard look and think it through.

  • Send me money to see an apartment?  SCAMscams
  • Buy your own travel business for a $500 investment and make $30,000 a month? SCAM
  • I was working on your neighbor’s roof and noticed yours was bad? LIKELY A SCAM
  • I know I bought the gizmo for $50, but here’s a cashiers check for $1000, just cash it and send me the rest back? SCAM
  • I will sell you something valued at $1000 for $500?  SCAM
  • Long lost relative (or complete stranger) in a foreign land looking to split their fortune? SCAM

There are more, but people just need to be careful. The best advice is that if it sounds too good to be true…it probably is!

Category: Crime News, OPINION

About the Author ()

John is the publisher and editor of Eye On Annapolis. As a resident and business owner in Anne Arundel County for more than 15 years, he realized that there was something missing in terms of community news--and Eye On Annapolis was born in late spring 2009. John's background is in the travel industry as a business owner, industry speaker, and travel writer. In terms of blogging and social media, he cut his teeth with MSNBC.com.