The following is an excerpt from a real-live banker. We think it’s important that we share our stories, so they don’t become yours.

angus cattle in a pasture

Dear reader,

It’s the week before the county fair.  I am a frantic 4H mom looking to get a billon things done. One of those things is to locate a reasonably priced air blower for my son’s 4H steers.  You might ask what the heck is that?  Well, even steers get their hair dried before a big event. We had been borrowing a dryer from a friend and it was time to get one of our own. But, we were in luck. I had joined a “show cattle” social media page recently and saw one pop up for sale just weeks before the fair! I was excited to get in contact with them – knowing I could check a “to-do” off my list. After first contact I found out the lady was located in Hays, KS. Perfect! I could pick it up on my way out West where we planned to watch my nieces show their steers in their own 4H event. 

Mistake #1 – I was in a hurry

After we visited via Facebook messenger, and I determined it was what I wanted, she sent me a payment link to make the deposit. She said the link was in her daughter’s name because she doesn’t have an account.

Mistake #2the daughter’s name wasn’t even close to hers

After I made the deposit I wrote that I wanted to visit on the phone to get directions to her house and arrange a time for pick up. She kept demanding that I sent her “proof of the payment”. I started to feel really funny at this point. Why would I need to do that?  I wrote in the memo that it was for a cattle blow dryer and she had my name. All she had to do was call her daughter and tell her my name. In my mind, the proof was already there. 

Mistake #3She kept rudely pressing me

She told me that she was at work and would be off in an hour. I asked her over and over to call me when she got off work. After an hour had passed – I wrote again asking her to call me. She ended with “you are a scammer and did not pay me. I will not be calling you back, goodbye”.

This was a hard pill to swallow. I did the exact thing that I preach to my customers NOT to do! This scammer swindled $100 out of a banker… I am not proud – but thought this could be a lesson for you. Scammers are tricky. Scammers are evil. And they must have needed the $100 more than me.  I hope they give it to charity.

If anyone knows of a cattle blower that I can borrow – I am still in the hunt for one…

Signed, 4H Mom & Mortified Banker

How can you avoid getting scammed on social media like this busy, 4H Mom?

Tip 1: Take your time. Slow down and pay attention to the details.

Tip 2: Pay in person. If they won’t accept cash or a digital payment at the time of pickup, that might be a red flag. Bonus tip, if you’re meeting a stranger to purchase an item, make sure you’re doing so in a public place and have a friend or relative with you. Pay attention to your surroundings.

Tip 3: When the seller is pushing for a quicker transaction or trying to impress upon you a sense of urgency, it might be a good idea to take a deep breath and sit on it. Yes, you can miss a one-of-a-kind deal this way, but the odds are equally in your favor that it might save you a big loss.

Bankers Get Fooled Too – The Infamous Cattle Blow Dryer
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