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Careful With That Craigslist Post, Eugene

(title is an obscure reference that I’m sure a lot of you will know!)

I was told an interesting story yesterday that I thought I’d share with my audience. This is just one of those cautionary tales about being too trusting of things posted on the Internet…

Friends of mine live in a nice split house off Monroe Avenue and that house was recently sold by the owners and former upstairs apartment residents. Shortly after the sale, a Craigslist posting appeared with the former owner’s name on it, looking to rent the apartment at a fairly ludicrously low price. No one could quite understand why she would do this, but the ad eventually disappeared.

Then just the other day, a girl came bounding up to the porch while my friends lounged outside, saying she just rented the place out and was hoping to get the key early.

You see where this is going, don’t you? The girl was so excited to get such a nice place (jacuzzi and all) for such a preposterously low price, she didn’t even bother to go look at it first. The owner of the newly-published Craigslist ad probably helped this unfortunate young girl to that decision, no doubt. Probably right before convincing her to send her $500 deposit Western Union directly to him.

Needless to say, the girl is out her $500 and the FBI is now involved. The person who pulled this off probably doesn’t even live in Rochester in the first place. But this is just a quick run-down on the silly things that can happen if you are too trusting with the Internet, which is an unfortunately common problem. If you think you’re a case-hardened soldier on the Internet, maybe you aught to share this story with a friend who isn’t.

By Tommy Belknap

Owner, developer, editor of DragonFlyEye.Net, Tom Belknap is also a freelance journalist for The 585 lifestyle magazine. He lives in the Rochester area with his wife and son.