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Author Topic: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert  (Read 4140 times)

asf

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Started this at the LF forum but wanted to share my experiences here as well

If this is not appropriate here my apologies, mods move or delete as needed

And before anyone replies to inform me I'm an idiot, let it be known I am well aware of this but am very happy to hear any constructive thoughts or advice

My Linhof Technika V (SN 2122839) was scammed from me by a local NYC person (not from this forum or through these For Sale ads)

I listed the camera locally in NYC on Crxxxlist, the person emailed me asking if I could take SquareCash

I said no, paypal or cash only but looked into SquareCash to see what it was. The reviews I found said it was safe and trustworthy, part of Square, I set up an account and told the person we could try it, if it worked I would accept it.

A couple days later after some text messages and emails the polite young man sent me the funds through the app then came over to collect the camera, I went over the camera with him for 20-30 minutes (he seemed excited about his purchase, in hindsight it was probably nerves about his misdeed). I checked the SquareCash account several times in the hour after he sent the money and the app showed the money as being transferred to my bank account. No changes, no problems. Then the young gentleman left with the camera, asking if he could contact me with any questions as it was his first LF camera.

About an hour or so after he left I received an email from SquareCash saying his payment to me "failed" and the details of this were sent to him. I tried everything I could to reach SquareCash customer service and the person who now has my camera but no response. I called his phone, sent him emails and texts - nothing.

I went to the police, they said it's not a crime and I should hire a lawyer

SquareCash sent me a form letter saying if I wasn't in violation of their ToS and I asked them to look into the problem they would get back to me "shortly".

It's been a week and they haven't

After some more digging online I have now seen this has happened to others - they are sent money for something they are selling, the money shows being transferred to their bank, then several hours later they get an email saying the payment "failed"

It seems one doesn't need to have available funds to send money through SquareCash, they just say the funds are sent and then if they can't get them later they stop the transaction. No protection at all, no word of this on their website, no live customer service, no customer service at all

The pwhmc (person who has my camera) still has their SquareCash accounts running, still has the iPhone he used to iMessage with me, still lives in NY and will likely face no consequences

The NYC DA advised me to go to small claims court but without knowing his real name or address that is hard (He went by William B Davis, possibly from Queens or Brooklyn, using an iPhone 929-345-0527 but I've been unable to find anything through this info)

Lesson - DO NOT USE SquareCash, it is NOT SAFE

the same may be true of Venmo as the pwhmc offered to pay with that app as well
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Bart_van_der_Wolf

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2015, 06:58:22 am »

Thanks for the warning.

Hopefully it will still be resolved somehow, although the chances are slim. Maybe checking some auction sites may turn up with the camera for offer, and someone in your place can try to collect it for cash payment to find the 'pwhmc'.

Cheers,
Bart
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== If you do what you did, you'll get what you got. ==

Tony Jay

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2015, 07:05:14 am »

Very sad story.
Message received!

Tony Jay
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asf

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2015, 09:37:07 am »

Found these reviews too late, apparently SquareCash and Square in general has a lot problems it's not taking care of

https://www.cardpaymentoptions.com/credit-card-processors/square-review/
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Ken Doo

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2015, 07:42:50 pm »

It sounds like you should re-visit the police/law enforcement office and try to find a sympathetic ear (read: someone who isn't lazy and cares about their job). As described, this sounds like "theft by trick or device."

Bummer.

Justinr

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #5 on: December 20, 2015, 07:58:01 am »

Genuinely sorry to see anyone defrauded like this and I hope you do get some result but the other lesson to learn here is that be very wary of online reviews. I take them all with a pinch of salt nowadays, whether it be for a payment service, a camera or a car.
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asf

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #6 on: December 21, 2015, 05:18:47 am »

Thank you Ken and Justin

I've put in a ton of effort already and just gotten more stress, need to find a balance between pursuing and letting go

Somehow

The camera is gone, that's ok

The money likely won't come to me

I'll survive

Still it's not right the system is so easily and readily exploited

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Otto Phocus

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #7 on: December 21, 2015, 06:27:48 am »

Very sad story.  I hope you can get some resolution.

Yet another data point for the importance of getting ID information for anyone you are selling to or buying from.
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MattBurt

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2015, 01:21:56 pm »

It seems like this should be treated the same as writing a bad check which is crime last time I checked. I'd try again with the police, at least make them file a report in case you can use it for leverage at some point.
My sympathies! Good luck.
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-MattB

asf

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Re: Warning about New Online Payment App Scams/Fraud - Stolen Camera Alert
« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2015, 01:27:53 pm »

I'm trying to get some authority to help, so far no luck but will keep at it

eBay would have been smarter in hindsight, thank you
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