Beware of “Phil Bloom”


A few days ago I placed an ad for a Simrad chart plotter in the “Gear” section of the classifieds. Within 24 hours I received an inquiry from “Phil Bloom” asking me about highest offer so far and for pictures. Note that there are photos of the plotter in the ad.

I responded with basically the same info that was already in the ad And asked where it would be shipped to.

He responded with another email asking me again, and I quote . . . “Will you tello me the last price you want to sold the simrad plotter. Ok, Hope to read from you soon.”

Hmmmmmm, very odd - seems to me that English is not his native language and he didn’t answer my question. Meanwhile, I am getting this “odor of very old fish”

I responded that as previously stated the price was $500.00 and PayPal was the only form of payment accepted. I also repeated the question of where it would be shipped to.

His next response. Again to quote “Thanks for the quick response about the item I am buying from you, any way the price is OK by me but I will like you to know that payment will be made by casher’s check. If this mode of payment is OK by you. Kindly send your information which you will like to receive the payment from the post man, so that i can instruct my secretary to issue it immediately.

Never mind about the pick up, it will be after you must have cleared the payment from your Bank Account. Await your Quick Response so that i can arrange for payment immediately.”

My response was a simple, one word reply, and I kept it civil.


Not a surprise but “Phil” has gone radio silent.

Amazing how many thieves that are out there.

Stay away from “Phil Bloom”!


Classic scam. They usually send a phony cashiers check for way too much and then ask you to send them the excess back... After which your bank comes back saying the check was fraudulent.


Super Anarchist
The Gorge
*yawn*. I've been liquidating my home and two businesses. I've gone through selling stuff (first month), trying to donate stuff (second month) and now just shoveling perfectly good inventory into the dumpster. I get a dozen "Phill's" every day.

Unless they offer a phone number up front, or lead with a very specific discussion of the item in question, just assume that everyone is a fake.

Next assumption, unless they have arrived at your location with cash and the appropriate means to transport the item in question, everyone is a flake who is just out to waste your time.


Super Anarchist
If you want to meet a very interesting class of characters, advertise something - nearly anything - FREE on Craigslist.

I gave up on this and just tried putting stuff on the street at the end of the driveway with a "FREE" sign on it. Sometimes took several days to get rid of it. Then I struck on the idea of putting a sign on it that said "$10". Things then disappear much faster.

Bull City

Bull City
North Carolina
There's a new to me scam going around.

It is an email including (a) an invoice for something you didn't buy, (b) notification that your credit card or bank account has been charged, and (c) a notice that you may cancel the purchase and have the refund credited to your account by calling this number, where I am sure there are operators ready to take down your account details.


New York, NY
Sooo... I should have picked up the $100 bill I spotted on the 5th floor of a building under construction a few days ago?
While not the same game as this, the $100 bill seemed just too large to have been lost by accident and then stories of stickers or something else left on the ground and laced with some drug popped in my head and I left the thing. Could have been a fat steak lunch if paranoia didn't intervene. For some odd psychological reason, I would probably have picked it up if it was $5 or $10.


Get off my lawn.
Chesapeake Bay/Vail
if they ask about the "item" I never reply. I hate craigslist and facebook market place. i wish I had created a new email address when I started clearing out of my last house...


Super Anarchist
if they ask about the "item" I never reply. I hate craigslist and facebook market place. i wish I had created a new email address when I started clearing out of my last house...
It sucks because Facebook marketplace had a nice run for about a year where it was mostly legit. Now it’s completely unusable.


I have found a relatively simple heuristic for dealing with both buying and selling on CL: insist on a live phone call.

For some reason, people who shy away from a live phone call tend to create problems.

Also, if you are selling and your price is firm, say that your selling price is negotiable but only upwards. If they suggest a lower price, you counter w a higher one …


Aspiring Anarchist
Santa Cruz
I just sold something on craigslist today. First text reply said is it still available? They asked me to reply to a gmail address (even though they contacted me by text). I replied by email asking if they wanted to meet. They said they are out of town but are willing to send a cashier's check for 100 bucks more than the current asking price. I marked the text and email as spam and moved on with my day.

The second person to reply was a real buyer and so I got the item sold anyway.


Super Anarchist
Phil Bloom goes by a lot of different names on SA classifieds but the MO is always the same. Asking for pictures, giving some weird account of how his "agent" will do the pickup, strange instructions about how he will pay, etc.