Nearing desperation in my search for a roommate since my present roommate, the wonderful Heather, will be moving out in August, I posted a simple listing on Craigslist on Sunday night.
What I didn’t know is that Craig (who is Craig, anyway?) attracts all kinds of scam artists to his list. Within 24 hours, I had received all kinds of emails all from girls with weird spelling in their names: “Jeniffer,” “Margarret,” etc. The emails I received from these “real life people” all read something like the following: (real example)
I am Tracey,i am much interested in the room you advertised on craigslist, i am female 26 years old from france,I just finished my degree course in oxford university and want to relocate to the states. for my postgraduate studies for a year in Georgia states university ….which will take me 9 to12 months….Am okay with the condition and price So i will like to pay for a month rent in advance .The form of payment will be by cashier check.So please let me know if that is okay by you cause i will need your full name,address and phone number so that the check can be issued out to you asap.. hope to hear from you soon.
warmest regards, Tracey
Hmm…”Tracey”….first of all, I find it very strange that you want to issue me a cashier’s check before you even move here. I find it even stranger that when I replied to you very kindly in French (I’m sure you weren’t expecting that — booyah!) you didn’t even take the time to write back. That’s probably because you’re some scam artist from Timbuktu who doesn’t know a lick of French, who barely knows English, and certainly can’t handle a white girl who knows both.
I have continued to receive about 25 emails like the one above over the last two days. Most of them have been from people who either claim to be students, model or humanitarian officers, and most ask for my address and phone number up front so they can send me a cashier check. I found more about this scam at this blog, and there’s more about it posted around the Internet if you’re interested.
No, I do not want to be your roommate, French model. And I do not want to give you my money, sleezy con artist from Timbuktu.