Consumer Alert: If you’re selling items online look out for this overpayment scam

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HONOLULU (KHON2) – The Better Business Bureau has a scam alert for consumers selling used items online.

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The BBB says, beware of con artists offering more than the asking price. This is part of a overpayment scheme making its way around the internet.

The scammer will claim the overpayment was a mistake and ask for the difference back. Once the seller returns their money, they’ll find the initial payment was fraudulent.

“Once the money is sent back to the scammer, it’s gone,” said Roseann Freitas, The Better Business Bureau Hawaii Marketplace Manager. “There is nothing they can do to get that money back once they sent it. That person now disappears and the other scary part though, is they actually have some of your personal information.”

Scammers will overpay through digital wallets like Cash App or PayPal. In other cases, some will mail a check.

“What they’re using as an excuse is they’re saying, ‘this is to help cover the shipping costs or you’ve been so great to work with, I just want to go ahead and pay you extra money.'”

The BBB says, make sure payments from buyers are legitimate before shipping an item. Also, look out for fake emails that imitate payment services like PayPal and Venmo.

“Does it look real? Is there something really funny about it? How is the grammar? How is the spelling? Again, if it sounds too good to be true it is too good to be true. So all of a sudden, they’re offering you all of this for an item that really doesn’t have that type of value.”

Report a scam to the online marketplace or the BBB Scam Tracker.

For more information on overpayment scams, click here.

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