I posted a wanted listing in the Eham Classifieds for a Wilderness Sierra radio.
I received an email with a very "polished" description, looking like a copy of something posted elsewhere. So, I went looking. I found a listing with the exact language, font, and photos that were posted by Jay, WA4VRV, over at QRZ, several months ago. The radio was listed as being sold.
Since I figured that WK9K, Joe, could have bought the radio and three months later decided he didn't want it and relisted it, my reaction wasn't to be alarmed, since that could have happened.
My first alert was the response to my question to send me a photo with it turned on. So, I soon received a picture of a radio with the frequency on its display, but it had a feature that the other radio didn't, and the cabinet was painted. The other one wasn't.
I then contacted Jay, WA4VRV, to find out who he sold his radio to. It wasn't WK9K. Here's proof of the scam (and something I'll do when getting an offer for anything in the future). I then emailed Joe, WK9K, at his listed email. The bogus address was Josewk9k@gmail.com
, which was not his email.
Joe said that no, he wasn't selling a Wilderness Sierra and confirmed that a scammer was using his call. I gave Joe the bogus email to pursue.
So, obviously, had I taken the bait, I would be out quite a bit of money and no radio.
Watch out for scammers. Email the ham offering the gear and not at the email address listed on the email you received, but at their listed contact information to confirm that's who you are dealing with.