This just happened:
A guy approached me in the parking lot just outside, and says, “Hey, listen. Sorry to bother you, but I just delivered several home entertainment centers to a retailer down the street, but they messed up the shipping invoice, which means my truck was loaded with more than the retailer ordered. This has happened before, and when I returned with the extra merchandise to the warehouse, my supervisor kept it for himself. I don’t want to see that happen again, and they will never know about the extra merchandise if I don’t say anything, so I thought I’d give it to you for a great price.”
The guy then opened the back of his truck, and insideÂ were his partner, half a dozen boxed, projection TVs, surround sound speakers, the works. He even had a legitimate looking invoiceÂ with a FedEx envelope.
At first, I just said that I couldn’t afford it, which caused him to assure me that he’d give me a great deal. Then I told him I had no need forÂ that kind ofÂ entertainment equipment (stolen), which prompted him to offer me one at an even cheaper price. I said no again, and pulled my cell phone out of my pocket, just to see his reaction. He and his partner packed up and quickly drove away.
I wondered how many people the two of them had encountered that actually believedÂ their story.
Have you ever used your skepticism to sniff out a scam like that? Hot merchandise? Have you ever perpetrated a scam like that? Have you ever been taken by a scam? If so, what were the particulars? How did you react?
The Afternoon Inquisition (or AI) is a question posed to you, the Skepchick community. Look for it to appear Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays at 3pm ET.