I recently posted an ad for my car on Gumtree (Australia).
Within minutes I'd received a request via Gumtree's built in messaging system showing interest in the ad and requesting my email address.
To say I was surprised would be an understatement.
Could I really sell a car that quickly?
The answer is NO.
You see, scammers pounce on Gumtree car ads and the first thing they try to do is get you outside of Gumtree's protection and systems.
So I politely refused the person's query and just as quickly as they showed up they went away.
Maxwell went very silent very, very quickly. So I reported him to Gumtree.
The full and short conversation can be seen below.
Out of curiosity, and sense that maybe I had jumped to a false conclusion, I checked his Gumtree profile.
It was brand new and as vacant as his skull...
So yeah, Maxwell is a scammer...and probably/definitely not even called Maxwell.
The lesson here, stay within the systems designed to protect you.
Check user profiles before engaging. They need to have a record of legitimate activity and look like an actual person's account.
If a scammer wants you to change/bypass something it is probably because they don't want to be tracked, recorded or something built-in is protecting you from them.
So don't bypass your security when anybody asks you to.
You may not sell your car but you won't be ripped off either.