1. ninjamattic's Avatar
    Hey iMore,
    I just thought I would throw down some knowledge for those device enthusiasts who often find themselves looking to Craigslist to barter what they have for what they want.

    I've been using Craigslist to obtain my iPhone and other devices for years, and weird people and bad deals have taught me a great deal about how an exchange like this can be both awesome and dangerous. I have come out ahead, I've come out behind, but generally I've been pretty satisfied with my Craigslist experience. Nonetheless, I wasn't born yesterday, and last night my usual caution paid off.

    Recently I relinquished my beloved iPhone so I could dabble in HTC One territory. While I thoroughly enjoyed the experience, it wasn't long before I was homesick for my iPhone, so off to Craigslist I went. Finding trades scarce, I decided to sell my HTC and just buy an iPhone cash. I happened across an ad for a mint condition 32gb iPhone 5 for a great (yet still believable) price, and a very long text conversation ensued.

    Because I'm cautious, I NEVER do a trade or purchase without knowing the warranty status of what I'm getting. Per my usual, I finally convinced the seller to send me the serial number of the iPhone I had just set up an appointment to buy. Lo and behold, upon running the number on Apple's warranty page, I was presented with the following message:

    We're sorry, but this is a serial number for a product that has been replaced.

    A two second google sniffing yielded that this is a message presented to you when a device has been reported lost or stolen. I quickly told the seller his device was blacklisted (didn't want to throw out any accusations, so "blacklisted" sounded nice), and no thank you. I then traded my HTC for an iPhone 5 the next morning. No lost/stolen (more likely stolen) devices for me, thanks.

    And that young forum goer, is why you never buy/trade an iDevice without prior verification. Be safe out there.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    09-12-2013 02:48 PM
  2. GingerSnapsBack's Avatar
    And that young forum goer, is why you never buy/trade an iDevice without prior verification. Be safe out there.
    I don't buy anything off CL until I verify it's not stolen and it works. I dropped my Nextel phone and broke it and had to replace it. I found an ad on CL for a similar phone and actually met the seller at Nextel to swap everything over and verify the phone worked and wasn't hot. After I successfully activated it, I paid the seller.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    09-12-2013 03:46 PM
  3. xlipstickandbruisesx's Avatar
    I sell my old phones via CL all the time. I personally won't give the meid numbers over the phone because I am too afraid somebody will be able to activate the phone on their account and then I will be SOL. I always offer to let the seller call and verify before purchasing one we are face to face though and the most hilarious part is that other than with my 4s (and that was the biggest nightmare ever, anyone wanting to buy my 5 can verify it's clean and be on their merry way I will NOT wait until its activated) the only times somebody wanted to verify and activate was when I sold 2 simple flip phones for like $10 bucks. It's just funny to me with the 300-500 phones I have sold those are the people that ask to verify lol and somebody paying $400 to a stranger say oh it's cool I'm sure it's fine lol.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    09-12-2013 04:20 PM
  4. ninjamattic's Avatar
    I sell my old phones via CL all the time. I personally won't give the meid numbers over the phone because I am too afraid somebody will be able to activate the phone on their account and then I will be SOL. I always offer to let the seller call and verify before purchasing one we are face to face though and the most hilarious part is that other than with my 4s (and that was the biggest nightmare ever, anyone wanting to buy my 5 can verify it's clean and be on their merry way I will NOT wait until its activated) the only times somebody wanted to verify and activate was when I sold 2 simple flip phones for like $10 bucks. It's just funny to me with the 300-500 phones I have sold those are the people that ask to verify lol and somebody paying $400 to a stranger say oh it's cool I'm sure it's fine lol.
    I've never asked anyone got an IMEI or ESN, a simple hardware serial number usually suffices, particularly with an Apple device. It's amazing how many people blindly go out there and spend a lot of money without knowing what they're getting is legit. I've had friends almost spend hundreds of dollars on iPhone clones before I stopped them. It's ok to be trusting, just not too trusting lol.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    09-12-2013 04:34 PM
  5. ctt1wbw's Avatar
    Also it's easy to spot scammers and general annoying bitches on Craigslist. Whenever you get a response from a listed item you have on there, anytime they refer to your stuff as "is this item still for sale?" then they're the son of the Zambian Prince who wants to buy this thing for their wife who is in New York. I have fun with these people, sometimes for days.
    09-13-2013 06:47 AM
  6. c_elliott83's Avatar
    I never sell on craigslist. I stick my selling on ebay. I don't have to deal with the price haggling that way. I always sell at a "buy it now", with "Immediate pay required", no auctions for me. Lately there are too many ghost bidding on ebay. I sell a item, bidder goes M.I.A and then I'm stuck holding onto a item that is technically sold, only to relist it again and again. It got old quick.

    I buy ans sell phones daily. I do post my ads for buying on craigslist, and often receive text asking if I have any phones for sale or if I will trade. Most people want to trade something off the wall. I generally do not trade unless I feel the trade is of equal value or more. In most case I simply tell people asking if I have phones for sale or trade, No. I recently started putting in my postings "DO NOT TEXT ME" "PHONE CALLS ONLY". I do this to avoid the scamming. In most cases I still get text, but before I reply I check out the number. If it is local I will call them back, if no answer I leave a message stating to call me, I do not text until I hear a voice on the other end. I do ask for some info on the phone, as people on craigslist tend to ask outrageous prices on phones that simply aren't worth it. Condition, Carrier, Esn status, Whats included, are all factors that determine how much I'm willing to fork out over it. I am always honest to the people that contact me, and I am always meeting them at the carriers store, even though I don't activate them, I still have some kind of record that protects me from being scammed on the item.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    09-13-2013 08:00 AM
  7. Dennisgarcia's Avatar
    Also it's easy to spot scammers and general annoying bitches on Craigslist. Whenever you get a response from a listed item you have on there, anytime they refer to your stuff as "is this item still for sale?" then they're the son of the Zambian Prince who wants to buy this thing for their wife who is in New York. I have fun with these people, sometimes for days.
    oh man i hate this! it always has the exact same name of your title word for word when they text you from a google voice number asking " is Apple iPhone 5 32 Gig in great condition for sale still available?"

    or "what's the item condition?"

    I like to mess with them and say "what item?" "the item your selling" which ones that?"

    send me a forwarded copy word for word of my title post, city and price -_-...
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    09-13-2013 08:03 AM
  8. ninjamattic's Avatar
    Lol, I love these responses. Selling on Craigslist can be such an entertaining venture. Any item I sell for cash clearly states in all caps that it's CASH ONLY and PRICE FIRM or NO LOWBALLING. Within five to six minutes I will immediately get emails offering me $100 less than I listed, or asking if I want to trade my listed phone (which requested another phone in trade if trade is an option) for a brand new cross bow.
    c_elliott83 and Laura Knotek like this.
    09-13-2013 10:21 AM
  9. c_elliott83's Avatar
    The google voice scam has become outrageous on craigslist. People use to be able to spell out the phone number and not get the scamming ****. Now they do that too. It looks like if google gave a damn they would just do away with google voice since hell 75% of the people using it are scammers. Hell I had to use a android last week when my phone crashed. I used it on wifi with voice and groove ip. I had friends and family cussing me thinking I was a scammer. That should say something. Craigslist should also start blocking IP addresses for the many known scamming posting on craigslist. I feel anything even that would maybe help out craigslist even just a little.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    09-13-2013 11:30 AM
  10. Dennisgarcia's Avatar
    Lol, I love these responses. Selling on Craigslist can be such an entertaining venture. Any item I sell for cash clearly states in all caps that it's CASH ONLY and PRICE FIRM or NO LOWBALLING. Within five to six minutes I will immediately get emails offering me $100 less than I listed, or asking if I want to trade my listed phone (which requested another phone in trade if trade is an option) for a brand new cross bow.
    Trade you my magic beans and a cow for your iPhone 10?
    09-16-2013 06:58 AM
  11. GingerSnapsBack's Avatar
    Also it's easy to spot scammers and general annoying bitches on Craigslist. Whenever you get a response from a listed item you have on there, anytime they refer to your stuff as "is this item still for sale?" then they're the son of the Zambian Prince who wants to buy this thing for their wife who is in New York. I have fun with these people, sometimes for days.
    Especially if they use wording like "advert" or they say "item" but never specificially say what the item is that you're selling. I get them all the time and have a little fun with them.

    I actually got some scammer to send a bogus check to the FBI HQ in Denver that was addressed to Michelle Dessler Almeda.

    Michelle Dessler Almeda was a fictitious character on 24.

    I hope that guy is enjoying prison.
    ctt1wbw likes this.
    09-16-2013 10:16 AM
  12. Phillybobo's Avatar
    Best bet is to meet at the store and immediately activate the phone. There's another scam, where they report the phone lost or stolen AFTER the sale. ;(
    09-25-2013 11:47 AM
  13. neurodave's Avatar
    I've gotten burned on CL a time or two, but they were valuable lessons learned.
    09-27-2013 01:03 PM

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