I received an e-mail from a potential customer yesterday:
I writes you because I would like to make the fuzzy bears because my daughter finds him(it) very beautiful. I wanted to buy you the model but regrettably I have not paypal. you would have another method of payment to give me. I can for example if you give me your banking coordinates to be made a transfer.
I replied back with my alternate payment options (cash, cheque, money order), and received this in response:
Thank you for your answer. To be able to make the payment on-line, I need your IBAN address, or your N of account as well as the coordinates of your bank.
Giving this person the benefit of the doubt (sounds like English isn’t their first language), I replied back again to reiterate that they may also send me payment by mail. I then received another reply:
I understands that it you frightened we never know what can arrive. But I promises you that my attentions are not bad. I ask you for that because I have a paypal nor credit card and the only means for me to pay your model which I wish enormously remain the on-line payment from my bank to your bank. I shall send you the proof of payment by email. I can so tried to make the payment if you give me only the IBAN.
Now, there is a chance that this person is genuine, but by this point I strongly suspect that this is a personalized phishing scam! This is a far cry from the standard random spam e-mails claiming the sender will give you a million dollars for helping them to move money into the country – someone has gone to some trouble to e-mail me directly, even using details of one of my patterns (fuzzy bear) to sound more genuine.
I just wanted to warn other people who sell online to beware this kind of scam. Never, ever, give out your bank account details!