June 23, 2008

BEWARE OF CRAIGSLIST PARIS APARTMENT & ROOM RENTAL ADS - MAJORITY ARE SCAMS!!

BEWARE OF CRAIGSLIST PARIS APARTMENT & ROOM RENTAL ADS - MAJORITY ARE SCAMS!!OMG!! I was looking to see how people came to my site... and found this article posted.. I was FLABBERGASTED!!!! It's a BRUTAL world out there, it seems . People trying to make a fast buck or 2 mille off of innocent victims.. If you have a chance, read this and you can also post it on your on blog, if you wish..

9 comments:

Lehners in France said...

I have recently posted ads on the internet, using my maiden name email. Since doing this four weeks ago I have received five dodgy emails asking for money/funding. Debs x

Brno girl said...

Hi Leesa...This is not to comment this post but I just wanted to say...I also very much enjoyed the book "Eat, pray and love"...It was so soothing and calming and hopeful...arrrghhhh:)

David said...

I think the person is a bit extreme whe they say that the majority of the ads are scams...
Unless there was a wave of scams (mail bombing style) at the moment they went to Craigslist...

Of course there are scams once in a while, but they're easy to spot if one uses their common sense...

If they ask you to wire money, if the rent is exceptionally cheap in a fancy area (sure, people might not know Paris before moving there, but doing some research is the least they can do before moving), if they tell you the apartment is yours before even visiting it, etc, etc... It has to be a scam...

I'm always puzzled by being falling for those (like the Nigerian scams too, people who believe them almost deserve to be scammed)...

Oh well...

But don't panic Leesa, Craigslist, even if it attracts evil people like any other popular thing (I'm dreading the first Facebook virus that's gonna come sooner or later through an application (just like FunWall and SuperWall are the most popular applications and that also happen to be spamming traps)...

Leesa said...

Hi Debs,


I can't stand Spammers-- I can't tell you how many penis spam emails I get... Oh.. it's annoying! All the other ones, as well!

Linda- Yes.. Loved the book! Check out the link I sent to you..

David- I understand.. but at least there is someone out there who went through a lot of effort to research other scammers!! Such a dishonest thing.. I blame the perpetrators, not the vicitims.. Yes, you should do some research and not think you can get an inexpensive place in Paris... but a lot of people who utilize Craig's List or the Expat site.. may feel that it is a good way to find a place.. There are risks everywhere.. A woman was murdered in the U.S. while answering a Craig's List ad for a babysitting job!! I fell for the arnaque de bague in Paris once.. but ONLY once.. The second time, I told the young gypsy woman straight out that I was aware of her scam!!! You have to be weary and not trust people but there are people who rely on the naivity of others.. The woman and husband looking for a place in Paris were journalists so I am guessing they knew how to ivestigate and were less naive than others..

Our Juicy Life said...

Do people really wire money to people in Nigeria? I have received many of these and I wouldn't think of falling for the scam, but i guess people are tempted by the $$$$. Crazy.

kikilili said...

hi leesa,
i was browsing for appartement in craiglist too and was rather confuse when i see some ads are 'too good to be true!!' lol. that's how i found out abt the scams. thanks for the warning tho :)

ParisBreakfasts said...

Where do you suggest we look then if they are all scams Leeza?
I need a place and I was told to look there..
Hmmm
Thanks
Carolg

Plink said...

Leesa, thanks again for posting my message. I'm glad the message is getting out there.

And David, I read your message and it made me felt like crap to be honest. Leesa is right, I am the victim remember. I'm the one that they stole $2,500 from and I'm trying my hardest to protect strangers all around the world, so maybe ease it with the finger pointing?

It seems I may have to clarify my situation. I did my research don't you worry! I liaised with this girl for 3 weeks, she sent photos when I requested them, she answered all my questions, she sent a contract which my solicitor approved, her passport, official documents verifying the address etc etc etc. She asked for a wire transfer as she said she was wary of sending bank account details due to the new "phishing scam" (where the person can take money out of your account, instead of depositing money into it).

And no the place was hugely impressive or located in the ritziest part of town. Just a standard room for a standard price. And I checked, a deposit and first month's rent is standard practice in France.

Due to conditions of a long-stay visa application, I have to present a signed and solicitor approved rental agreement when applying at the Consulate. Without which I'm automatically rejected. Hence my need to find a place before actually arriving in France and yes it's unfortunately the only way around it. Many people who have contacted me, and there have been 5000 people who have visited my blog, have said that there are now fake websites around claiming to be real estate agents in Paris. So now the "safest way" to do it also comes with risk.

Yes Craigslist is crawling with spammers. Yes, a lot of them are easy to identify...poor spelling and grammar, unrealistic prices, huge places, actual mentioning Nigeria or Africa and descriptions that don't at all describe a typical Parisian apartment. But then there are the ones, like mine, that are impossible to pick.

So ponder this...ever booked a holiday online? You see a resort/holiday house/hotel that you like the look of, the cost seems reasonable and you decide to proceed. You trust that the website is real and the property exists. So before you pipe up with "they deserve to be scammed" think about how many times you could've potentially been done.

I can tell from your lack of insight that you are not a regular user of Paris Craiglist. Or at least you don't know how to search someone's IP address to determine the country where the email originates. Because if you did, you'd see how many smart/deceitful/story weaving/perfect spellers there are based in the UK/Nigeria/USA etc. Maybe next time before attacking someone who is trying to do the right thing, you should do some research of your own!

David said...

I'm sorry shit happened to you, but you sent money for an apartment you hadn't even visited, and before getting the keys... You're asking for trouble... End of story.

The choice of adjectives to qualify that behavior is quite narrow...

Sorry...
(and also sorry you're taking things personally when we don't know each other, not a good way to start a discussion, exchange point of views and debate, so I won't try...)