I used to be nearly robbed in my own residence – beware the brand new rip-off concentrating on photographers

I was almost robbed in my own home - beware the new scam targeting photographers

There are quite a lot of scammers targetting photographers, it looks like. I’ve been fortunate sufficient to not have been affected by these, till just lately. There’s a new rip-off aimed toward photographers promoting their used gear, and I nearly fell for it. I wish to get the phrase out in order that you understand what to be careful for and don’t fall sufferer to those individuals.

I’ve been promoting a little bit of images gear on Fb Market, and to date, I’ve by no means had a difficulty. Nonetheless, a fellow photographer buddy of mine had a horrible expertise the place he had a digital camera stolen by way of a reasonably refined con. I didn’t consider he might have fallen for it, till it nearly occurred to me.

I was almost robbed in my own home - beware the new scam targeting photographers

The advert positioned for the lens I used to be promoting

Final month my buddy was promoting his Canon EOS R6 on Fb Market. The man got here spherical to his home and determined in a short time that he wished the digital camera. So he obtained his cellphone out, and he went by means of the cost course of by way of his cell banking app.

All the pieces seemed 100% authentic at this level, there have been no pink flags from my buddy’s viewpoint. The customer confirmed my buddy that the cash had left his account by way of the app and warranted him that the cost had been made. It ought to seem in his account anytime.

Now many financial institution transfers actually don’t all the time undergo instantly. Some banks can take as much as 24 hours to acknowledge the cost into your personal account. So once more, no speedy pink flags right here. The customer took the digital camera and began to stroll to his automobile, then drove off extraordinarily quickly. It was solely at this level that my buddy started to surprise if he’d been conned.


After all, the cash by no means arrived in his account, the person had successfully stolen his digital camera from underneath his nostril. The banking app seemed extraordinarily convincing, however it was utterly faux. Clearly, I felt very badly for him, and thankfully for me, had his story at the back of my thoughts for when somebody tried to tug the identical trick on me.

So now it was my flip to promote a few evenly used lenses that I don’t use a lot anymore. They had been in good situation, and I used to be asking a good value for them. I exchanged some temporary messages with a person who instructed me he wished to purchase one of many lenses for his father.

I was almost robbed in my own home - beware the new scam targeting photographers

The dialog with ‘Peter’ earlier than he tried to rob me

Often I examine the profile out of the individual first, and all of it appeared very regular. Nothing to trigger any alarm bells to ring anyway. I didn’t discover that the profile picture can be totally different to the one that really confirmed as much as purchase the lens. The person insisted on coming to my home to gather the lens after darkish. Once more, not so uncommon within the UK in winter, it’s darkish effectively earlier than the top of the working day. Fortunately my associate was additionally at house on the time.

He got here to the door, and he was a really huge man. It was once more, fairly a fast course of. We agreed to the worth, after which he obtained his cellphone out to pay by means of a banking app. I instructed him the story of my mate, and I might simply sense from his face that somebody was off.

I instructed him, “I’m not I’m not going to provide the lens until I’ve obtained notification on my facet”. After a couple of minute, I nonetheless haven’t acquired a notification, and my financial institution is normally speedy with notifications.

The customer began to get offended, saying that I ought to belief him. He even advised that I let him go outdoors to take a photograph of his automobile licence plate as collaterol.

I stood my floor, and the altercation obtained extra heated, with voices raised. It was fairly intimidating, given the person’s stature. Ultimately he simply grabbed the lens out of my palms and tried to make a run for it out of my residence. Fortuitously, I used to be capable of wrestle it from him once more whereas my associate shouted that she was calling the police. This was fortunately sufficient to scare the person, and he ran off, making an especially quick getaway. I can solely suspect that he had somebody in a automobile outdoors ready for him.

I had an in depth name, however think about these persons are pulling stunts like this three or 4 occasions a day. On-line safety and phishing is a large deal nowadays, however you don’t suppose that you could possibly fall prey to that by way of a neighborhood second hand gross sales market in individual.

My recommendation is to be extraordinarily cautious of anybody shopping for your used digital camera gear, particularly if it’s a excessive worth merchandise. You possibly can lookup their profile and examine in the event that they belong to any digital camera golf equipment or on-line teams. A non-photographer shopping for skilled stage gear is a little bit of a pink flag. Notably if they are saying it’s for another person they usually appear to know nothing about images.

Apart from that, you’ll be able to promote by means of trusted websites comparable to MPB and even Ebay, which may have some type of recourse if all the pieces goes incorrect. Or you’ll be able to insist on money. I’d additionally advise from assembly them at your house tackle after this expertise. Sadly he now is aware of the place I stay, leaving me extra susceptible to future break-ins. I’ve since taken steps to improve my house safety for this very cause.

Actually I really feel extraordinarily lucky that nobody was harm. As a marriage photographer, I’m typically out and about with hundreds of {dollars} price of apparatus and have heard some scary tales of photographers being robbed at gun level whereas out on shoots in London and San Francisco.

It’s a tragic state of affairs not to have the ability to belief individuals, however my hope is that by sharing this story it’ll forestall others from falling sufferer to the identical rip-off.

In regards to the Creator

Richard is a profitable wedding ceremony photographer within the South of England. He needs to maintain his identification secret for safety causes.