Facebook Marketplace now packed with scammers

Originally published at: Facebook Marketplace now packed with scammers | Boing Boing


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I’ve never understood this sentiment. Is it backed by statistical fact, because it sure seems like accepted fact without any substance.

I don’t know anything about allbusiness, but it seems to be the only article with actual statistics and context (the only other ones I found are linked in the article).

The money quote:

“I also got a chuckle out of Oodle’s claim that it’s safer to use than Craigslist because Oodle requires users to create an account or to use a Facebook profile to identify themselves.

Facebook ? Really? Have these clowns ever used Facebook?”


Sorta like this?


It’s a more democratised version of how Faux News attracts mainly scammy advertisers. Crappy platforms supported by an audience with low critical-thinking skills attract crappy ads.


Fbook is as safe as InstaScam, oh wait…

@cannibalpeas Often I wonder who it is that has these bad experiences with purchases on Craigslist.
I have always looked on CL as the free eBay, or like when we had newspapers, the classifieds. The worst that ever happened to me with CL, is the item was already bought by the time I got there…


I use local BST groups for hobbies way more than I use general market place. But even in those cases, I only deal locally. I would consider shipping, but they require you to use their payment service, and I already have paypal, so no thanks.

Too many people scammed by using apps or FF on Paypal and cant get their money back when they run off with it.



Where I live, anyone selling bulk lots of laundry detergent, beauty products, meat or coffee is clearly selling stolen goods.

If anyone is selling anything for a price that is too good to be true, it probably is.


DH got taken in by a Fbook scam early this year: he was presented with an ad for a model that he thought would be a good gift for a friend. After having me buy the model (via PayPal), I was sent a tracking number within an hour, which didn’t exist when I tried to track it. Alarm bells now ringing, I tried to contact the seller, only to be told that the item was shipped and I needed to be patient, I should get it within a few weeks. PayPal was no help, and kept giving me the runaround when I asked them to check into the now-nonexistent company and its nonfunctional tracking. I ended up having to have my credit card do a chargeback. Paypal is rife with stories in its forums of FBook scams, mostly from companies overseas that put up items for sale they never intend to ship, and try to run out the clock on refunds.


Tracking numbers only going active the next business day happens every time I order things shipped from China. It was quite unnerving the first few times, but even the PineTime(open source smart watch) suffered from it, so it’s not proof of a scam


Not to mention the UX sucks, at least for this slightly geri-adjacent, social-media-hesitant user. Friends tell me “Yeah, just go to Marketplace. You can get da kine there” and then I’m wading through ads and suggested posts and I can’t figure out if the seller has written back to me or not and I hate all of the swiping. CL just seems so straight forward compared to it all.


I bought something locally from Facebook Marketplace and it made me quite worried. I actually put the seller’s information and details of our meet-up in a document on our computer desktop just in case something bad happened so my family would know. You never can tell if a person-to-person transaction is legit or not.


I play a game that gives rewards for watching ads. One kept coming up for jigsaw puzzles, which looked like a great gift for a relative. But I noticed the name(s) of the company/ies involved kept changing, and so did the prices… I did some internet sleuthing, and those company names involved kept coming up on scam complaint sites.

All of them were hosted on Facebook business pages.

I’m glad I checked first; I saved myself lost money and exasperation. That having been said, I know someone who’s sold art and other items there, and she’s totally legit. She uses FB Marketplace because it’s cheaper and easier for her than other platforms. So as always, it’s caveat emptor, but for the most part I’d avoid shopping FB as much as possible, unless I can verify whoever’s selling.


Whenever I do a Craigslist or Marketplace, unless it’s a very large item, we always meet in a very public spot. Most police stations have a designated area for people to meet. If that’s a problem I walk away and it’s always cash and never before the merchandise is in my eyesite.

The last two large purcases and sales for a boat and an RV were completed inside a bank with all funds verified.

Avoiding being scammed is easy unless you really really want that deal you know is too good to be true.

All that being said I almost fell for an email scam when I got an email from someone I knew asking for help with an Amazon purchase. It took 3 emails back and forth before the light clicked on.

I was so mad at myself because I’m the guy people call for help with that stuff.

My mom called the other day because she called a number in a text message. I thought I beat that horse to death but I had to repeat the lesson for the millionth time.

Scammers are running rampant because it works.


I don’t know if this will work when the original message is taken down as spam, I just love the sheer joyful chutzpah of this bit.


The thing I worry about with that is that doing so means they know you aren’t at home - it’s pretty easy to look up most people’s address on line for free if you know their name and city.

I don’t know if that is a risk I really need to worry about, but thieves do sometimes use knowledge like that to rob houses, such as robbing people during publicly listed memorial services/funerals and such.

One of the scams that seems to be really popular on FB Marketplace right now is the one where the scammer messages you asking for your phone number, to “prove you are real”. Then they claim they are going to send you a code to your phone number they want you to read back to them, but they are actually trying to activate a Google Voice number on your cell phone’s number (to use for other scams in your name, presumably), and trying to get you to read the Google authentication SMS code to them. Grrrrr…


You could remove the word “Marketplace” from the headline and it would be just as true.


It’s scammers all the way down…

Fish rots from the head…

(I’ve read that’s not actually true of fish, so maybe the aphorism should just be changed to “Companies rot from the CEO down…”?)


You are telling me an online marketplace is filled with obvious scams!

Say it ain’t so!

In seriousness, if you list things on such marketplaces the buyers who approach you are also often scammers. Most often, making an overly high offer, which you ship before getting payment. For higher priced items like cars, requesting a “shipping fee” for a car priced way under bluebook value.

I only deal with people who do the deal in person for these marketplaces. I try to use a designated online transaction spot where police usually are parked (where I used to live had a designated police squad parking spot in the parking lot of a McD’s). Or I bring my big scary friend with!

Most recently I bought a retro TV from a young lady. I am a middle aged guy, so I brought my wife with to her house, which I also alluded to in my communications. Her husband was home as well (no accident I am sure), and everyone felt comfortable with the deal.

The most important thing is to not give in to FOMO because the deal seems too good to be true.