Alert! 10 Common OfferUp Scams To Stay Safe From In 2024
by Shahnawaz Alam Finance 30 December 2023
Whether you want to sell old stuff to make money or buy old products to cut your budget, OfferUp is a go-to platform for many. With close to 44 million users, this Craiglist alternative is a place for different buyers and sellers to hang out. Simultaneously, it also harbors so many shady people scamming buyers and sellers.
Yes, there are many examples of OfferUp scams. But how do you spot early signs of an OfferUp scam?
Do not worry. Here is a list of different ways OfferUp scams happen to a user. Keep yourself alert by reading these signs.
1. Fake Offerup Website Scam
How they fool you: Scammers are pretty smart. They sometimes simulate genuine websites selling something a searcher wants to buy. These websites mirror the original websites, which is why they are fake OfferUp websites.
They create a lookalike of the real one and create a make-believe URL that seems like the original website. When the audiences click on these phishing links, they end up on a form that they fill out to complete a purchase. As an internet user, you must stay alert and do not fall for these fake offerup website scams.
How to stay safe: If you purchase from OfferUp, you should make all your purchases through the app itself. Do not click on any link that takes you out of the app interface, making you fill in shady forms.
Additionally, to stay on the safe side, you can check the links on the Google Transparency report.
2. Overly Interested Buyer Scam
How they fool you: Some OfferUP scams can come faking themselves as overly excited buyers. As soon as you post an ad, they are excited and eager to buy the product from you. They want to pick the product ASAP and even want to arrange a meeting soon. But they also want to move the conversation away from OfferUp.
How to stay safe: The best way to stay safe is to use OfferUp for all your sales-related conversations on that app. Even if someone asks for your mobile number, email, or any similar information, do not provide them.
3. Over Payment Scam
A scammer gets to you when you least expect it. You would not think that these scams would not involve sending money to a victim. Well, every little scenario you see as impossible is very much possible.
How they fool you: Sometimes, a buyer sends more than the purchase price to the seller after buying something from them. But, they reached out to the seller later, saying that they had made an honest mistake. So, now, as part of the process of honesty, they would ask the seller to return the money in full amount or only the extra amount so that they can initiate a new and correct payment afterward. When the seller returns the full amount, they are scammed.
How to stay safe: First thing – it is alright to develop to suspicion for these occurrences. Also, when you receive an overpayment, wait till it gets processed and is deposited in your account. Furthermore, when you are making purchases on the OfferUp app, do not drift away elsewhere, like Zelle or PayPal. The Scammer wants you to use those apps to return them the extra amount. These apps are fast, so they will collect the money faster.
4. Multiple posting scam
How they fool you: Multiple posting scams are one of the common scams you will know about. Here, a scammer posts the same listing on different listing platforms. But the items they post are not real. So, when you click on them, you are clicking on a phishing link, making them steal all of your important personal information.
How to stay safe: It is pretty simple to spot these OfferUp scams. These stupid scammers use the same photo on different listings. And they use the same photo on every listing. So, when you use that photo to run a reverse image search, you end up finding different results. Most of these search results have different unidentified sellers with no proper rating or stars.
5. “Need To Sale Quick” OfferUp Scams
How they fool you: One of the common offer scams includes the Scammer posting ads with headlines “ Need to sell fast” or “priced to sell,” They hope to sell the product to buyers who won’t ask many questions. These scammers claim to sell an exclusive item for a lower than market price. It is like getting the new iPhone 15 for $80.
How to stay safe: If someone offers deals that are too good to be true, you must not give in to them. When the price does not seem reasonable, it is a scam.
6. Code verification scam
How they fool you: A code verification scam, a fake buyer requests your phone number to send a “verification code.” Instead, they send a text with a malicious link aiming to steal your login, password, and financial details. Stay vigilant and verify such requests to protect against identity theft and unauthorized access to sensitive information.
How to stay safe: First and foremost, do not click on any verification links. You may see some shady verification codes that OfferUp never uses. Most of the time, these are devised by sellers and buyers to obtain your personal information. Stay on the OfferUp and complete your operations there instead of heading over to other platforms where your scammers want you to be.
7. Bad Check Scam
How they fool you: You list something for sale, and you get a call from a seller agreeing to meet you. They give you a check, which later turns out to be a fake one.
How to stay safe: If you want to stay safe during in-person purchases, always take cash transfers or direct cash. Avoid receiving personal checks. The checks can be doctored, which will eventually end up as a scam.
8. Shipping Scam
How they fool you: In an OfferUp shipping scam, a common scenario involves a buyer claiming a non-delivery and demanding a refund. This risk increases if transactions occur outside the app, as OfferUp manages the shipping process securely within the platform. Be cautious and conduct transactions exclusively through OfferUp to mitigate the risk of scams.
In another variation of the shipping scam, the seller sometimes asks to cover the shipping charges. Then they request you to send an invoice to cover the cost. They may also refer to using a different shipping service.
How to stay safe: To avoid shipping scams, use OfferUp’s in-app features, stay in-app for transactions, verify details, secure payments, and stay skeptical.
9. Empty box scam
How they fool you: Yes, people do strike a deal sometimes. But all of them are not what it feels like. An empty box scam means exactly what it literally sounds. Some scammer sends you an empty box.
How to stay safe: OfferUp scammers usually list boxes of expensive products like a Playstation 5. They put it out for sale. But when you buy them, you get an empty box. You can avoid it by not falling for products with only one image of the box. If they are not showing a picture of the product, do not order it. It is a potential scam. Also, stay on OfferUp and do not leave the platform if you are to avoid getting scammed.
10. Counterfeit Product Scam
How they fool you: Counterfeit scams are also the same as their literal meaning. As of now, many companies make counterfeit products. These could be anything from apparel to tech devices. Usually, people order an item, and they receive a counterfeit product. These products can also be pretty dangerous if they are for personal protection. Counterfeit products have been the reason for thousands of deaths.
How to avoid it: Spotting a counterfeit product online is difficult. But you can avoid these products by meeting the seller in person. Also, do not purchase products that only show stock photos of the product. You will also find loopholes like grammatical errors or similar mistakes in the listing.
Do not leave the OfferUp platform even if any of the buyers or sellers suggest you do so to complete a deal. Also, never share your personal information and data with anyone if you are to stay safe from OfferUp scams. Look out for all of these different signs of OfferUp signs to stay safe.