If it is too good to be true, it most likely is not true.
Scams targeting artists on mnartists.org have been making the rounds again. Most of the scams are of the advance fee fraud or 419 type scam. They will attempt what seems like a legitimate transaction, but then require you to send them money at some point.
The good thing is that the scammers do the same thing over and over, so doing a bit of research online usually will give you the information you need to recognize a scam and not fall for it.
How to keep yourself safe
Always do a google search or other research before making a transaction, a little time spent will save you from many headaches.
In any case, if they send you a check or money order exceeding the agreed upon amount, DROP IT. Do not cash the check/money order and do not respond to any of their emails. Some banks charge you if you attempt to cash a bad check/money order, so do not attempt to cash it if it is suspect.
If you receive one of the emails or an email that you aren't sure of please email us at email@example.com .
Block the user from reaching you repeatedly by updateing your email preferences/account setting to block their account.
Feel free to report the the email account to it's provider, i.g., gmail.com.
Overall the best thing you can do is to ignore senders like these, much as you would other incoming junkmail.
More information can be found here in our forums:
Web resources on scams:
2011 SCAM EXAMPLE
This sender has been contacting mnartists.org members during July 1 - present. Please note that we have contacted google to alert them of the misuse of his accounts:
From: "Henry Vosky" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: "henryvosky2" <email@example.com>
Sent: Friday, July 1, 2011 5:55:29 AM
Subject: Art Enquiry............
Hello and gooday
I just took a look at some of your works and i love them because
they are attractive,so i would be more pleased if you could email me
an online portfolio or catalogue where i could view some of your new
works,also please i would like to know if payment via a check or money
order drawn in USD funds is okay and fine by you.
Thanks so much and hope to hear from you soon
This scam is from Henry pablo vosky but they may use other names as well
my name is pablo i am really interested in the purchase of your works and i need it for my personal use because i just aquired a new apartment here and i am currently doing some decorations and also just to let you know i saw you online while i was looking for a digital artist in MN,so please let me know if i may make a purchase from you,so thanks so much and patiently await your response asap,also please do you have any new works if you do,pleease can you email me a link to it
Sender;” henry Vosky”
thanks so much for your email and quick response i really appreciate it,please i would so much interested in the work below
so please let me know how much they cost totally,also as regards shipping you dont have to worry your self about that because my daughter has a fedex account which she would use so as to effect the pick up of the works,so just let me have the price of the works,also payment would be remmited to you via a check,so in order for payment to to be remmited to you and for the works to be picked up from you i would be needing the following informations from you asap,i reside in newak NJ but i am currently out of the states on official assignment but would be back soon.
FULL MAILING ADRESS(NEEDED FOR SHIPPING AND PAYMENT)
PHONE NUMBERS INCLUSIVE OF MOBILE
So thanks a lot and look forward to hearing from you asap
Henry pablo vosky
33 vassa avenue
how do you do today fine i guess and i hope you are fine and alright. i am sorry for the late response its because I have been busy myself but i am doing great.and my mum is seriously ill and i have to make sure that she lives.Well there is something i think i must bring to your notice. After a reconciliation of my account lastnight, i discovered that some how my assistant that issued the payment must have over paid you. The payment that was meant for another transaction was sent to you and the one meant for you was sent to another, however i want to believe i wont have a problem with you.
Please once you have recieved the check, i will like you to take it to your bank and as soon as it has been cleared and funds have been made available to you i would like you to deduct your money for the art and then please help send the remainder of the funds via western union to my daughter so that she can help me reactivate my fedex account that i intend to use for the pick-up of the piece so please let me know as soon as you get this email and the most especially the payment
From: Eve Johnson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2007 15:41:35 +0000 (GMT)
To:your email here
Hope this message finds you well ,I came across your web page while searching for good artworks and I will like to buy some of these creative artworks directly from you,which are
A Vetreran Remembers September 11th
I will be happy to have these selected artworks in our new home.
What are their prices exclusive of shipping cost? My family are moving from our Alabama home to our new apartment in London, UK.
I will appreciate an earlier reply. Thanks.
This is a 419 style, or referred to as advanced fee fraud, scam, they send you a bad check of a huge amount & want you to mail them a check of what they 'overpaid.'
Below is an example of the 419 scam, including the initial email as well as the reply when you have replied:
I came across your work on the internet and i really like it alot and am intrested in buying it from you,Your work of ( title of work ) so i will want you to get back to me with the price and also with any other information such as the condition and other things,
Thanks i will be willing to read from you.....
Subsequent message(bold text added to emphasise what gives the scam away) :
Thanks alot for the response and am really happy to read from you,So regarding the payment am sending you the payment through check which am going to send to you in your name.So am sending you $4,000 for the payment of (title of work ) i will buy the 2 pieces which will be $950.
The reason why the payment is so high like that is due to, i have a shipping company who is going to come for the pick up at your location, and the shipper instructed me that they want their shippment fees to be send to them through the saler so there wont be any problem regarding the pickup thats why they bring out this policy and i do hope you understand it.After you would have recieve the check from me, I will want you to transfer the remaining funds back to the shipping company through WESTERN UNION MONEY TRANSFER. Meanwhile get back to me with
this below information in other for me to send the check to you.
Your Full name that will be written on the check:
Full Address ..........
Another scam from February 2007
I am Mr. Howard Cecil, President of Brit-works Art and Craft, located in London, united Kingdom. Britworks is an on line gallery and publisher specializing in the mythopoetic arts. The gallery features original paintings and sculpture along with prints, giclees,and collectibles from visionary artists with a flair for fantasy and fairy tale art.
We want to expand our business into Canada, United States, the Middle and Far East and the rest of the world. We are searching for reliable representatives who can help us establish a medium of getting to our customers in your respective country as well as making payments through you to us.
Please contact us for more information,Subject to your satisfaction you will be given the opportunity to negotiate your mode of which we will pay for your services as our representative.if you are interested,kindly get back to us for more details as we will be pleased to do business with you.
Thanks in advance.
President Britworks Art & Craft.
Scam from March 2007