Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Beware of DoneDeal Scams

A couple of years ago, ESET Ireland has already covered some of this scamming in Scammers looking for victims on This time around one of our own employees had a similar experience when selling his car online.

Contacted through the website by someone calling himself Tim, our colleague received an inquiry about the car he was selling. But as he replied the car has already been successfully sold, he received a more intriguing and longer email, purporting to come from a US Captain Tim Blair, serving in Afghanistan, who asked for his assistance in transferring nearly 20 million US dollars. Here is the full transcript:


Thanks for the mail concerning your offer. The offer is just a minor objective of my contacting you but am going to buy it at your selling price.

My name is Capt. Tim Blair; I am an American soldier, serving in the military with the 3rd marine division in Afghanistan with a very desperate need for assistance. I have summed up courage to contact you. I am seeking your kind assistance to move the sum of $19,700,000 (Nineteen Million Seven Hundred Thousand US Dollars) to you as far as I can be assured that my money will be safe in your care until I complete my service here come next month.

The above figure I saw in a cave while on patrol and to conceal this kind of money became a problem for me, so with the help of a British contact working here and his office enjoy some immunity I was able to get the package out to a safe location entirely out of trouble spot. He does not know the real contents of the package, and believes that it belongs to a British medical doctor who died in a raid here in Afghanistan, and before giving up, trusted me to hand over the package to his family. No compensation can make up for the risk we have taken with our lives in this hellhole, and I have been shot,wounded and survived two suicide bomb attacks by the special grace of God. This and other reasons has prompted me to reach out for help.

I want to promise you 30% of this money for the assistance you will give to me but one passionate appeal I will make to you is not to discuss this matter with anybody. Should you have reasons to reject this offer, please and please destroy this message as any leakage of this information will be too bad for me here in Afghanistan. In less than 4 days the box should be in your possession. I hope I have been fair to this deal. Get back to me if you are interested in this deal and we shall proceed,



The scam email is a typical example of an automated advance fee fraud, in which the victim is promised a share of a large amount of money, but has to pay a bunch of “expenses”, “fees”, “bribes” and other made up costs in advance, before they can receive their share. In the end they never do, but after possibly sending the scammers thousands already, many na├»ve victims refuse to believing they were scammed.

When we were last dealing with scams and fraud on DoneDeal, their administrators quickly contacted us with a list of good precautionary measures for keeping any transactions safe. Check out DoneDeal’s security advice for online buyers and sellers.