I was contacted by an individual via e-mail several days ago. She seemed to be interested in Avon products, as I am an Avon Representative. The grammar and spelling in the e-mail was terrible so I was skeptical from the beginning, but I gave it a go. This individual would not provide me with a full name, address, or any other identifying information. All I knew was that this person was looking for 12 bottles of fragrance, was going to send payment via Federal Express, and was visiting my area to pick up the products in person. The product total would be around $145.00. Never having been contacted for such a large order I was not about to place such an order on good faith. I e-mailed the individual back and said I would order product once payment had been received and verified. That's when things got even stranger. 'She' insisted that I place the order and payment would be received before the end of the week, but of course, I was not about to since I could tell this was shaping up to be an 'overpayment scam'. What do you know, I did receive payment from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in the amount of $2,500.00; obviously well over the $145.00 discussed. This person did send an e-mail explaining the 'goof' and was ready to provide me instruction on remitting the remaining funds to another account. At that point I destroyed the check (keeping a copy of course) and immediately filed complaints with the Federal Trade Commission and the Consumer Fraud Reporting Agency.
What really threw me for another loop was the discrepancy in all the addresses and company names surrounding the Federal Express package. I already mentioned that the check was issued by Mount Sinai School of Medicine out of New York, NY. But the FedEx label appeared to ship from a construction company out of Hackensack, NJ. However, when I tracked the package it actually shipped from Lakeworth, Florida. I have been in contact with the owner of the New Jersey construction company who notified me that their Federal Express account had been compromised and they had been dealing with this issue for several weeks, so I'm not about to throw dirt on the New Jersey company. But, since the check was issued by Mount Sinai School of Medicine it is very clear to me that they are running the scam! Steer way clear of this name and anyone contacting you for a large order promising to pay in advance. Luckily for me I gave this individual my business mailing address and spoke to other people who have been through this before. I did not fall victim this time and will now be better equipped to deal with this in the future, though I hope I do not have to.