Is this a fake payment / request for money?
If a buyer says they’ve sent you too much money then asks for the surplus back, it’s probably a scam. Same with someone looking to rent a place off you, or even an employer wanting to pay you.
- A bank transfer or PayPal payment probably won’t go into your account
- A cheque will probably bounce or go in then come out later
If you get an email that makes you suspicious, check your bank account straightaway to see if any money’s gone in. If you pay the scammer, you’ll lose that money and won’t get the money you’re owed.
Ways to spot a scam
- Check emails are really from your bank or PayPal. If they are, you’ll see your bank’s name in the address, or PayPal’s name. And links will be to websites. Hover over them to check. If they look odd, don’t click.
Here are some examples we gathered to help you see what we mean:
It should be ‘@paypal.com’ instead of ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ or ‘@barclays.co.uk’ and not ‘@barclaysbank.com’
- Look out for bad grammar and spelling mistakes. If you spot sloppy English, the email is probably from a scammer.
- Check with your bank or PayPal that transfers have happened. Only send what you’re selling when you know the money’s going in. Logging in online is probably the easiest way to check, or ask your local bank branch.
Useful tip: Always go to the official website directly instead of using links from email.
Here's an example of a fraud attempt from beginning till end:
- I've had a bad experience on the site
- Am I safe if I used Paypal?
- When should I contact the police?
- I work with the police. How can I contact you?
- How do I post an ad?
- Which location should I post in?
- Which category should I post my ad in?
- How can I put photos on my ad?
- Are ads on Gumtree free?
- Do you have rules for posting ads?
- What can’t I buy or sell on Gumtree?
- Motors Posting Rules
- For Sale Posting Rules
- Pets Posting Rules
- Property Posting Rules
- Jobs Posting Rules
- Tickets Posting Rules
- Services Posting Rules
- Community Posting Rules
- Am I dealing with a good user?
- Do I have Payment Protection on Gumtree?
- Is the Payment Confirmation e-mail I've received real?
- Is this e-mail/sms from Gumtree?
- How can I recognise fake money?
- I want to update my ad
- Do I get a refund?
- How do I add features to my advert?
- How do 'Featured Ads' work?
- How does a 'Bump Up' work?
- How does 'Homepage Spotlight' work?
- How does the 'Urgent' feature work?
- I can't find my ad. What now?
- How do I search for ads?
- Can I save ads or searches for later?
- How does messaging on Gumtree work?
- How do I know how my ad is doing?
- I have an account but forgot my password
- Buying Pets Safely
- Buying & Selling Cars