web design scam text correspondence

Recently, we’ve received a number of different requests for website redesign proposals that had some odd and striking similarities, enough to trigger alarm bells that something wasn’t right. What started as a simple text message turned into a call with the Secret Service (yeah, really). We all know how prevalent scams are online, so it’s no surprise that these extend to specifically crafted web design scams, SEO scams and other scams that directly target photographers, designers and other creative professionals. In the web design industry, we’re all targets. Be alert, trust your instincts and reach out to others in your professional community.

Here’s how the scams work

They’re called the Third Party Payout Scam, the Payment Reversal Scam, the Advanced Fee Scam or the Overpayment Scam. The Fraud Prevention department at credit card payment processor Stripe put it like this:

I can see that you work in web design. Designers such as yourself are common targets for a type of scam known as a Third Party Payout. Essentially, the scammer makes a payment (generally in the thousands) for a project, and pays more than they need so you can then transfer money direct to a third party (e.g. a consultant, graphic designer, etc). I imagine your correspondence with your ‘client’ has been along these line. As I’m sure you’ve figured out, the fix is that the card used is stolen and the third party is actually the scammer. So when the legitimate cardholder disputes the payment the business is left holding the bag on the money retrieved from their account and what they transferred to the scammer.

What’s amazing about these web design scams

  1. How involved they are – by the time any money were to actually make it back to the scammers, a lot of work and time is devoted to each scam
  2. How long they’ve been going on for – these scams have been going on for a while, and they don’t look to stop
  3. The exact scams aren’t changing much – a basic web search will turn up dozens of minor variations on the same web design scams that are being recrafted into seo scams, designer scams and other freelancer scams
  4. The scammers will email you, text you and sometimes even talk on the phone with you – it’s amazing just how easily a scammer can be totally anonymous hiding behind a throw away webmail account and a Google Voice phone number

Here’s how the web design scams went down

The first scam came through from Kent Walter <kentwaltersnr@gmail.com> and seemed strange because it mentioned a budget right off the bat (what clients reveal their budget in a blind outreach email) and asked “are you the owner” – strange. It also referenced another website to copy – pretty unusual. Here’s the full email:

From: Kent Walter <kentwaltersnr@gmail.com>

Good I just want to open a new Indian Restaurant i need a website for my business to grow the site should be up & running by ending of March i don’t want a shopping cart in my reservation page also i don’t have a domain name yet i prefer: DHARMAKENTRESTAURANT.COM My budget is $5000-10000 for the web design i need you to go through this example link site: http://www.indikausa.com, i want the same page as this site i want only English language you will be updating the site for me. I have a private project consultant, he has the text content with logo along with the image artwork get back to me with an estimate including hosting i will like to know if you are the owner or the manager?

Thank you

This person is the scammer: “I have a private project consultant, he has the text content with logo along with the image artwork”

web design scam fake website sitemap

“Kent” even sent through a sitemap drawing of the website he wanted to make – pretty funny in retrospect. And since this time, the website http://www.indikausa.com has been suspended by HostGator. I emailed with “Kent Walker” a few times until I realized the whole thing was going nowhere – he never responded to basic discovery questions. I didn’t suspect this was a web design scam. Until a few weeks went by.

The second web design scam came through a few weeks later – early in the morning as a text message from someone claiming to be Luis Lee at (732) 893-0731. The first text read “good day are you available for a website design.” Our business number accepts text messages and our Google My Business listing allows potential customers to text message us. Here’s where the alarm bells start going off:

From Luis Lee (732) 893-0731

am luis i would love to know if you can handle website design for a new company and also if you do accept credit cards ?? kindly get back to me with your email so i can send you the job details.

And it gets even more fishy when the email came through from luis lee <luislee23@yahoo.com>

From: luis lee <luislee23@yahoo.com>

I have small scale business which i want to turn into large scale business now it located in TX and the company is based on importing and exporting of Agriculture products such as Kola Nut, Gacillia Nut and Cocoa so i need a best of the best layout design for it. Can you handle that for me ?. so i need you to check out this site but i need something more perfect than this if its possible .http://www.agroamerica.com…. the site would only be informational, so i need you to give me an estimate based on the site i gave you to check out, the estimate should include hosting and i want the same page as the site i gave you to check out and i have a private project consultant, he has the text content and the logos for the site.

Note:
1. I want the same number of pages with the example site i gave you to check excluding videos and blogs.
2. I want only English language
3. I don’t have a domain yet but i want the domain name as leetopfarmproduce.com
4. you will be updating the site for me.
5. i will be provideing the images, logos and content for the site.
6. i want the site up and running before ending of next month.
7. My budget is $4000 to $6000

Kindly get back to me with:
(1) an estimate
(2) And will like to know if you are the owner ??

Regards

This person is the scammer: “i have a private project consultant, he has the text content and the logos for the site”

I immediately thought, “There is that same email we received from the Indian Restaurant a few weeks ago. What are the odds.” It became obvious pretty quick that both were web design scams.

But then my brain quickly went to “how do these web design scams work? – how do they play out – what kind of people are doing this?” I have no intentions in vigilante justice. Or intentions of repeating the amazing journey of phone scam discovery that took the producers of the Reply All podcast to India to meet the people behind those annoying junk calls from a phone number a few digits off from your own (episodes one and two – will blow your mind).

Curiosity got the best of this cat, so I played along with the web design scam to find out more.

Luis of course eagerly responded to my proposal

I emailed with “Luis Lee” a few times and even made up a quick proposal based on the sitemap of the Agro America website and sent it off to Luis. I even called him to see if he would pick up. I ended up talking to Luis on the phone, though the connection was terrible and neither of us could understand each other. He did, though, email me right back to accept my proposal.

From: luis lee <luislee23@yahoo.com>

Thanks for your response, I am okay with the estimate everything sound good and i’m ready to make payment now with my credit card, I understand the content for this site would be needed so work can start asap but i will need a Little favor from you and the favor is that I will send you my credit card to charge for the sum of $5850 plus 3% Cc company charges, You will deduct $2750 as deposit for the design of the website plus extra $100.00 as a tip for handling perfect work for me and you will send the remaining $3,000 to the project consultant that has the text content and the logo for my website so once he receive the $3,000 he would send the text content and logo needed for my website to you so work can start asap,Sending of funds would be after money clears into your account and You will be charging my card for remaining balance upon completion of work, Kindly get back to me so we can proceed with payment asap

Regards
Luis

Here’s the scam: “you will send the remaining $3,000 to the project consultant that has the text content and the logo for my website”

Pretty good location for a gacillia nut business

I asked for a name and address of the company, and was given the kind of uncreative name “Luis Lee LTD” and the address 5603 Peacock Ridge San Antonio, TX 78228. As if more evidence of this web design scam were needed, a quick search on that address showed that it had been listed for sale just 21 hours ago.

fake address used by web design scam attempt

I reached out to Stripe to see if they had any interest in at least tracking an IP address from these people. I can turn my credit card payment processor into testing mode so charges aren’t really processed. The great people at Stripe’s Fraud Prevention department told me to do absolutely nothing like that, to stop all communications and to reach out to the Secret Service with details of the web design scam.

It turns out this particular variant on the Third Party Payout Scam / Payment Reversal Scam / Advanced Fee ScamOverpayment Scam has its own name: the Agro America Scam and the Gacillia Nut Scam. Unlike the Indian Restaurant variant where the example website seems to have been suspended, it seems that Agro America is a legitimate business and doesn’t play a part in this scam. The website did send my computer’s CPUs through the roof, making me wonder about BitCoin / cryptocurrency mining. But enough about the scam.

What to do if you’ve been targeted

  1. Unless any money has been stolen from you, the best thing to do is nothing. Delete the emails / texts and never reply at all. It’s unlikely that the scammers are sitting in a room together and will put you on some kind of organized hey don’t contact this web designer again, she’s onto us type list. More likely is that the scammers are an unconnected group of people using the same scam, are totally disorganized and will probably contact you again. So just delete. We played along for a bit to find out more about the scam out of curiosity, but it’s probably not a good idea.
  2. If you want to report the scam, or have unfortunately lost any money, you can reach out to
    • The Secret Service – we were referred to them by Stripe even though no money had changed hands. The Secret Service is responsible for counterfeiting law violations as well as financial fraud including banking, access device, advance fee fraud and computer fraud, financial document counterfeiting, and money laundering. I had a pretty nice chat on the phone with a Secret Service agent who confirmed how widespread these web design scams are and told me that unless money had changed hands, they weren’t too interested in trying to track anyone down
    • FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) – complaints filed via this website are processed and may be referred to federal, state, local or international law enforcement or regulatory agencies for possible investigation
    • Federal Trade Commission Complaint Assistant

We’ve heard reports from others like fellow web designers Olive Group and Covington Creations about similar encounters. Have you been contacted? Have an update to report?

Updates

Looks like the scammers are moving to Yelp! Is anyone else getting these Yelp scam messages? Seem very similar to other general web design scam emails we’ve gotten dozens of times…

New Message: James H. is requesting a quote

Hi there, please respond with a price estimate. Here are my answers to Yelp’s questions regarding my project:

In which ZIP code are you looking for professionals?
78711

Describe your need:
Good day, am Hanson i would like to know if you can create and handle an informational website design for my new company ? Kindly get back to me as soon as possible with your email or cellphone number so i can send you the job details. Thanks

Thanks for the comments posting the details of all the variants on this same third party payout scam. Hopefully the scammers get tired of spending all this time trying to steal money and put their efforts into something more constructive. Keep up the comments so others can stay alerted!

This stuff never stops. Good thing is that it can be put online so others can find it hopefully before any money changes hands. Just got another of the same scammer emails from leon gregory <leongreg2006@hotmail.com>

From: leon gregory <leongreg2006@hotmail.com>

My name is Gregory Leon and I would like to get a quote for an e-commerce website for customers in Haiti, with the same functionality as Craigslist, but with distinct design. In addition, I want to integrate google translation because Haitians speaks French and Creole. Furthermore, the website will be for small businesses and individuals with goods and services they are interested in selling or advertising via this website. There are additional features I want integrate into the website as well:

Certify SSL, and all traffic to the website will be over HTTPS.
WordPress
Ensure current architecture adequately supports future systems upgrade
Enable electronics gift card payment.
Create ten additional staffs accounts.
Maintain complete ownership of the website and its content.
Mobile-responsive, fast-loading, and able to adapt properly to changing screen sizes
Maintain complete copyright protection of the website and its content
Please send me your quote to include the development, design and a reasonable monthly charge for hosting the website no later than June 1, 2018.

I can be reached at leongreg2006@hotmail.com and by phone at 786-473-4663. Thank you and look forward to hearing from you soon.

Unfortunately, we were in the middle of putting together two proposals and didn’t have the time to catfish more out of Leon. Next time…

This crap never stops. Just got the exact same scam sent it via email from james morgan <jm6994017@gmail.com>

From: james morgan <jm6994017@gmail.com>

Sound good …… I have small scale business which i want to turn into large scale business now it located in and the company is based on importing and exporting of Agriculture products such as Kola Nut, Gacillia Nut and Cocoa so i need a best of the best layout design for it. Can you handle that for me ?. so i need you to check out this site but i need something more perfect than this if its possible .http://www.agroamerica.com…. the site would only be informational, so i need you to give me an estimate based on the site i gave you to check out, the estimate should include hosting and i want the same page as the site i gave you to check out and i have a private project consultant, he has the text content and the logos for the site.

Note:
1. I want the same number of pages with the example site i gave you to check excluding videos and blogs.
2. I want only English language
3. I don’t have a domain yet but i want the domain name as yourtopproduce.co
4. you will be updating the site for me.
5. i will be proving the images, logos and content for the site.
6. My budget is $3000 to $8000

These scammers never stop. You’d think they’d start getting more creative. But everyone knows creativity is inversely related to profitability, or something like that.

Just got another of the same scammer emails from
julian johnson <julian4real147@yahoo.com>

From: julian johnson <julian4real147@yahoo.com>

Here is the job details

i have small scale business which i want to turn into large scale business now it located in USA and the company is based on importing and exporting of Agriculture products such as Kola Nut, Gacillia Nut and Cocoa so i need a best of the best layout design for it. Can you handle that for me ?. so i need you to check out this site but i need something more perfect than this if its possible .http://www.agroamerica.com…. the site would only be informational, so i need you to give me an estimate based on the site i gave you to check out, the estimate should include hosting and i want the same page as the site i gave you to check out and i have a private project consultant, he has the text content and the logos for the site.
Note:
1. I want the same number of pages with the example site i gave you to check excluding videos and blogs.
2. I want only English language
3. I don’t have a domain yet but i want the domain name as UlyateFarm.com 4. you will be updating the site for me.
5. i will be proving the images, logos and content for the site.
6. i want the site up and running before ending of next month.
7. My budget is $5,000 to $19,000

Kindly get back to me with:
(1) an estimate

Favorable Regards,
Julian Johnson.

Sent from my ipad

I asked for the name address and phone number of Julian’s business, and he said it was

JULLYFARM
USA
OFFICE 1754 Woodruff Road #153
Greenville, South Carolina
29607, USA
+1-785-428-2862

I called the number and spoke with someone I couldn’t really understand. It was a busy day in the office so I didn’t dig much deeper, but I did email Julian to get a life and stop stealing money from people.

blog post author avatar
Written with by Alex Wright

Runs a creative digital marketing, web design and SEO agency in Austin, Texas   |   Likes good looking, fast performing and high ranking websites   |   Doesn't want to understand Snapchat   |   Wants nothing to do with bananas   |   Wishes he were a BMX superstar

371 thoughts on “Avoid Web Design Scams

  1. Hello how are you doing today? I got a notification from FEDEX that the check will delivered to your friend mailbox address today or tomorrow here is tracking number 392344190604 once your friends received the check and go ahead and have the check deposited to his/her bank account immediately his /her received the payment.My private project consultant has the text content and the logos for the site with the image artwork but requested for the payment before releasing the information. I will like you to tell your relative to keep $1,000 for your upfront payment as a deposit and take $50 for gas and send the rest to the consultant just inform me once his /her receive the money i will get back to you with the consultant information to send the money to her okay thanks.Kindly respond to me with your whatsapp number for fast communication…..

    He forces me and my friend. He tell if my friend not deposit check money than he call FBI. I am afraid, what i do tell me any one

  2. Thank you for this! I’m sure you just saved me from wasted time and a headache!
    I just received a fishy text message from “Thomas”. (I do not give out my phone number.) The number was from (925) 718-9203. Here is the text I received, just in case someone else receives something similar:

    Hello, My name is Thomas. I would like to know if you’re available for web design and do you accept credit card for as Method of Payment?

    (I replied)

    Great hearing from you, Actually i would need you to check out this site but i need something more perfect than this if its possible. http://www.cinnabon.com. the site would only be informational, so i need you to give me an estimate based on the site i gave you to check out the estimate should include hosting and i want the same page as the site i gave you to check out and i have a private project consultant, she has the text content and the logos for the site.

    Also i want you to note this:
    (1) I want the same number of pages with the example site i gave you to check excluding videos and blogs.
    (2) I want only English language (3) I don’t have a domain yet but i want the domain name as http://www.bestfastmeal.org
    (4) You will be updating the site for me.
    (5) I will be proving the images, logos and content for the site. (6) I want the site up and running before ending of next month.
    (7) My budget is $5000 to $10,000

    And i want you to kindly get back to me with:
    (1)In full estimate plus tax fee.
    (2)What’s your full name please?
    (3)And will like to know if you are the owner.

    (I asked for his email to send an estimate)

    Here is my email address thomasongrahams555@gmail.com

    1. We were contacted by Thomas as well, same number 925-718-9203. We are photographers and he discussed us taking pictures at his family reunion. Odd thing, he contacted us July last year also, but with a different number of 862-243-2519. He insisted we start a 30 day trial of QuickBooks in order to take a payment, because that was the only one that would be able to process his credit card. All the others, PayPal, Wave, Zelle, etc would reject his payment because of some kind of problem with his card. He also said he was recuperating from a lung cancer diagnosis and would be having surgery in a couple of days. Another odd slip up, he said he wanted to have the photo shoot at a house he had just purchased for his mother, but the address was actually for a park in the area. Beware of this line of discussion also. This person didn’t talk about any of the scams yet, like overpaying or something, but we have had that in the past from others. So, watch out!

  3. Thought I would use my latest experience.

    Email 1 The person asked if I accept credit card payment for website creation. I said yes.
    Email 2 He then outlined the job and budget and asked for a quote. I replied with quote but also asked if I could speak on the phone regarding this quote.
    QUOTE
    ________________________________________________________
    1. I want the same number of pages with the example site I gave you to check excluding videos and blogs.
    2. I want only English language
    3. I don’t have a domain yet but i want the domain name as farmforgood.com
    4. You shall be updating the site for me.
    5. I will be proving the images, logos and content for the site.
    6. I want the site up and running before the end of next month.
    7. My budget is $3000 to $6000

    Kindly get back to me with an estimate
    Best Regards
    Michael Panettieri
    QUOTE
    ________________________________________________________
    Email 3 He stated he couldn’t talk to me as he was recovering from Covid-19 and had been on the Ruby Princess.
    Email 4 He asked if I could pay his consultant – he would supply me with credit card details to withdraw the money and I was to transfer half to consultant. I said I could only do this if I received an invoice from the consultant.
    Email 5 Agreement from him. He would forward invoice and credit card details.
    Email 6 Full credit card details plus invoice. Asking me to withdraw $4k on one card $4k on the other card and transfer $4k to the consultant from my business bank account when funds clear.

    Checked the ABN on the invoice – legit company in Australia. Contacted them regarding situation and reported this to ACCC.
    I have stopped all communication with this person as I thought “if it sounds to good to be true it usually is” and did my own investigation.

  4. Just wanted to thank you for the heads up. Looks like you saved me a lot of hassle, I’m sure, as I got a similar communication today. Thanks to my wife’s antenna we did a Google search and found your post.

    1. Can you build

      Need a perfect freelancer who is in hit me (davidjohn0705430 @ gmail dot com..) for more details

      Skills: Graphic Design | HTML | JavaScript | PHP | Website Design

      John David
      8:48 PM (2 hours ago)
      to me

      Thanks for the message,I just open a new Indian Restaurant which i run now and i need a website for my business to grow, So i need you to go through this example link site: http://carsonkitchen.com but i need something more perfect than this if possible, I will like you to get back to me with an estimate and the estimate should include hosting and i want you to understand i want the same page as the example site i gave you to check and I want only English language and i want you to know you will be updating the site for me. I want the site up and running before 3 weeks and i don’t want a shopping cart in my reservation page also i don’t have a domain name yet and i will prefer: http://carssarskitchen.com, My budget is $750/$1,500 for the web design, i have a private project consultant, she has the text content and the logos for the site with the image artwork,so please go ahead and check the example site and get back to me with an estimate also will like to know if you are the owner or the manager and do you accept bank cashier check as payment..
      THANK YOU FOR SAVING ME ALEX !!!!!!!!!!!

    2. Got one yesterday – I just hope others research and Alex thank you for this post because had it not been indexed I would not have seen this while researching the said industry and owner of collision repair specialists… Keep up the good work everyone!

  5. I received an email using the Agro America site as well. I found it odd how somebody could be so eager about getting web design from me, without requesting to see any websites we’ve designed (we don’t even include web design on our site). Then, of course, willing to fork over the $5,295 I quoted him without any questions. Not the most convincing scam.

    Nice article breaking it down.

  6. Similar Fraudlent Email:
    Thanks for your respond for the web design, i just open a Indian Restaurant and i need a website for my business to grow,I want the site up and running before 4weeks, So i need you to go through this example link site: bartaco.com My budget is $800/$1,300 but i need something more perfect than this, I will like you to get back to me with an estimate and the estimate should include HOSTING and DOMAIN and i want you to understand i want the same page as the example site i gave you to check and I want only English language and i want you to know you will be updating the site for me. And i don’t want a shopping cart in my reservation page also i don’t have a domain name yet and i will prefer: bartacorestu.com i have a private project consultant, she has the text content, logos and artwork,so please go ahead and check the example site and get back to me with an estimate also will like to know if you are the owner or the manager and do you accept bank cashier check as payment

    Number of email use by scammers:
    rukelvindile@gmail.com
    sandrapy570@gmail.com
    davidjohn0705430@gmail.com
    williamwilson21182@gmail.com

  7. Got a random text from “Jacob Trump” out of the blue. Seemed fishy but I went along with it to see what was going on. He was very pushy, sending an email and then texting me right after “waiting for my response”.

    His phone: 347-798-1164
    His email: trumpj125@gmail.com

    “I’m needing a Web Designer,this is Jacob and i will like to know if can you handle an informational website for my new company? stay safe always”

    (I asked him how he found me)
    “Actually i just did a google search of the best web design workers fortunately i got few people but i just wish you could be the best for me and i will be very happy if you could do me a perfect job.”

    “I have a small clothing business for both male and female, now am trying to expand the business and i want you to build an informational website for it for advertisement.”

    “I need you to checkout this site but I need something more perfect than this if possible, http://viviankateshop.com and Zaful.com.
    The site would only be informational, So i need you to get back to me with an estimate for the web design.”

    We switched to email then. He (only) wanted:
    1. A brand new custom made dynamic design.
    2. Flash banner, Hit counter and a Google map.
    3. Responsive feature.
    4. Google/SEO friendly.
    5. Tap to call/text/ Email feature.
    6. Unlimited Pages.
    7. Compatible to all the devices like i-phone, i-pad, tablet, android, etc
    8. Https secure.
    9. Submission to a major search engine like Google, Yahoo, Msn, etc.
    10. Social media marketing.
    11. Fresh content with keywords.
    12. Ecommerce platform
    13. User-friendly
    14. Multiple Payment Options. (Credit card , Debit card etc)
    15. An integrated blog or articles section
    16. Content management capabilities
    17. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section.

    I have a private project graphic designer, he has the text content, typography, images, product photo, Team Banners and the logos for the site just let me know how you will be build a domain, hosting, and SSL add up everything to the estimate and I will be need 8 pages for this project get back to me with the total estimate cost.

    i want you to know i will be making upfront deposit for my service now and the rest upon the work completion let me know if you are ready for the payment and send invoice to my email now for the deposit.

    And finally, this is when I knew it was a scam:
    My card doesn’t work with PayPal and some other merchant due to some bad experience of funds deducted but never get to my partners end and my account officer deactivated their payment gateway from working with my card let me know if you have other way to charge my card

  8. Looks like this scam is still continuing and they have moved to freelancer.com now. I found an email address hellenfoster896@gmail.com and contact them for more details on the project and below is the email i received:
    I just open a new Indian Restaurant which i run now and i need a
    website for my business to grow, So i need you to go through this
    example link site:http://www.indikausa.com but i need something more
    perfect than this if possible, I will like you to get back to me with
    an estimate and the estimate should include hosting and i want you to
    understand i want the same page as the example site i gave you to
    check and I want only English language and i want you to know you will
    be updating the site for me. I want the site up and running before
    ending of next month and i don’t want a shopping cart in my
    reservation page also i don’t have a domain name yet and i will
    prefer: kaitind-restaurant.com., My budget is $750/$1,500 for the web
    design, i have a private project consultant, she has the text content
    and the logos for the site with the image artwork,so please go ahead
    and check the example site and get back to me with an estimate also
    will like to know if you are the owner or the manager and do you
    accept credit card as payment.

    ——————————

    I even sent them a detailed website proposal based on this and all they want for sending the payment is the address and phone no. of a representative in USA. I suspected this was a scam and thats when I started looking for similar emails on google search and landed here.

    I still don’t understand how sending a check to an address would benefit them but I decided not to reply and just delete the emails.

  9. THANK YOU! I got this today and it smelled fishy. Glad I googled the details.
    FROM THEIR EMAIL:

    “I’ll like to know if I got the right contact to a graphic designer. I want you to design for me a logo and an e-brochure for my new company, based on production and sales of organic foods (plant based food and drinks).

    1. Company Name: AMERICAN ESSENTIAL NUTRIENT INC.
    2. My website is under constructions which would be registered soon.
    3. I Don’t have a logo yet but would need one to be made by you
    4. Full text content and all images for the e-brochure will be submitted to you by the project consultant. You just have to handle the layout.
    5. The e-brochure should be 24 in pages (Including from and back cover. I have lot of information already approved. The text and images have also been crosschecked)
    6. The size of the e-brochure should be 8.5 X 11.5
    7. I want you to add our core values, mission and vision (This information will be provided by the consultant)
    8. My budget is not more than $7000
    9. I want this delivered in 5-6 weeks to the latest.

    My Goals and about the project:

    AMERICAN ESSENTIAL NUTRIENT INC. is pet project and same time a business avenue for me. I will be 10 years a vegan in May and I hope to expand the business (and unveil the logo with e-brochure then)

    To my customers, AMERICAN ESSENTIAL NUTRIENT INC. should be able to provide over 500 plant-derived minerals that can improve the value of foods, liquids, nutritional formulations and cosmiceuticals. That way also improving value of life. Whoever purchase our products would have a guarantee of good living and relish.

    Our uniqueness will be privilege of our 5 locations around Texas and online store. Our products are also 100 percent plant based produce under strict standards from International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM). Our brand and style would also stand us out.

    Other project essentials:

    1. I want you to know that this is the first time I will be doing a Logo design so I can only give you little details then you can decide on designs but I want the color to consist of Green, Red and Brown (let me know what you think about that) with an image of a some mixed fruits. I want a very mature and presentable design and my budget for this project is not more than $6000.
    2. For logo inspirations you can look at logo from this samples site below:

    https://www.sprouts.com/

    Kindly get back to me with:

    (1) a price estimate/quote :
    (2) your cell phone number:
    (3) And will like to know if you are the owner ?

    Keep safe and protect yourself from the virus.

    Regards,

    1. Patrick – I too have received emails through my website from Stacy from AMERICAN ESSENTIAL NUTRIENT INC this time for video production.
      I provided quotes, but they insisted they paid by cheque – and I said our minimum terms were 50% cleared in our account and we do not accept cheques. Further I wasn’t ready to take payment as I wanted to finalise the brief and produce a production contract before we began – a fairly normal practice for high worth gigs.

      Everything seemed legit until I asked questions they appear to not have had a pre-written answer for – as the standard of english dropped significantly and they clearly made up a story about how their Paypal has been put on hold by Paypal (they dont do that – unless you’re dodgy). I actually never brought up Paypal but another company that takes US payments to pay worldwide accounts. There was mention of a project consultant which I felt was annoying not being part of he conversation when discussing the brief.

      I also used in our payment terms a very clear “We do not make payments to third parties.” I believe that rattled them. Responses included near begging to find someone in the US who could accept the cheque on my behalf…

      I ended the conversation by saying I decline the work. I am disappointed. It looked like a good project based on information provided – and with COVID19 effectively shutting down our business with all contracts postponed or cancelled, it would have been the life boat we need right now.

  10. I think that i am also victim of scam. Yesterday i was on “freelancer.com” to look for any job, and there peoples who left posts with their email address. So i contacted them. The two differents persons had the same message:
    “Thanks for the message,I just open a new Indian Restaurant which i run now and i need a website for my business to grow, So i need you to go through this example link site: http://carsonkitchen.com but i need something more perfect than this if possible, I will like you to get back to me with an estimate and the estimate should include hosting and i want you to understand i want the same page as the example site i gave you to check and I want only English language and i want you to know you will be updating the site for me. I want the site up and running before 3 weeks and i don’t want a shopping cart in my reservation page also i don’t have a domain name yet and i will prefer: http://carssarskitchen.com, My budget is $750/$1,500 for the web design, i have a private project consultant, she has the text content and the logos for the site with the image artwork,so please go ahead and check the example site and get back to me with an estimate also will like to know if you are the owner or the manager and do you accept bank cashier check as payment.”
    If anyone here has already received this kind of email please notify me.

  11. We just got one of these emails too, actually someone we know unknowingly referred them to us. We thought the email was strange and we usually do a quick search on prospective clients as a general precaution and found all these comments here.

    Here’s the email:

    Thank you very much for your email,i need an information website to promote my business,so i need you to check out this site but i need something more perfect than this if its possible  http://frontrangedents.com/. So i need you to get me an estimate based on the site i gave you to check out, the estimate should include hosting and i want the same page as the site i gave you to check out and i have a private project consultant,
    he has the text content and the logos for the site.

    Note:
    1. I want the same number of pages with the example site i gave you to check excluding blogs.
    2. I want only English language
    3. I don’t have a domain yet but i want the domain name as  www.Collisionrepairspecial.me
    4. i will be proving the images, logos and content for the site My budget is $3,500 to $6,500
    I will be waiting for your email for the estimate

    Here is my company name: HERBET REPAIR SPECIALISTS kindly get back to me with your cellphone number so that we can have suitable text on phone

    Best regards
    Herbert

  12. Similar scam, but for a furniture company’s logo design and catalog layout. My friend, a designer, had received the same request, word for word, but with a different name.

  13. Thank you for the alert and how to deal with scams of this nature.
    I don’t often receive emails from my website for work however, I believe this one I just received fits into that category.

    The IP address is Nigeria, so I am 99.9999% sure this is a scam. The phone number is a listed scam number so that puts my confidence that this is a scam at 100%.

    Here is that scam as sent to mail email:
    ________
    Someone filled out your form, and here’s what they said:

    Name: Linda McDaniel
    Company: Essential Nutrient Inc.
    Phone: 2010000000
    Email: l.mcdaniiiel24@gmail.com
    Comments: I’d love to have a logo and brochure created for my new business. Please let me know your interest and would send you more details. Thank you
    Submitted On: 2020-04-09 12:24:09
    IP Address: 41.242.71.7

    1. Same email from the same person. This is a SCAM!

      Message Details

      Name: Linda McDaniel

      Email: l.mcdaniiiel24@gmail.com

      Subject:

      Phone No.: 2010000000

      Message: I’d love to have a logo and brochure created for my new business. Please let me know your interest and would send you more details. Thank you

  14. Thank you for your post, it confirmed the suspicions I had all along!

    I was contacted last week via email by “Linda Crawford” Linda.crawford12@outlook.com, asking for “logo design and digital brochure”:

    I’ll like to know if I got the right contact to a graphic designer. I want you to design for me a logo and an e-brochure for my new company, based on production and sales of organic foods (plant based food and drinks).

    1. Company Name: LEENCROWN ESSENTIAL NUTRIENT INC.
    2. My website is under constructions which would be registered soon.
    3. I Don’t have a logo yet but would need one to be made by you
    4. Full text content and all images for the e-brochure will be submitted to you by the project consultant. You just have to handle the layout.
    5. The e-brochure should be 24 in pages (Including from and back cover. I have lot of information already approved. The text and images have also been crosschecked)
    6. The size of the e-brochure should be 8.5 X 11.5
    7. I want you to add our core values, mission and vision (This information will be provided by the consultant)
    8. My budget is not more than $7000
    9. I want this delivered in 5-6 weeks to the latest.

    Then they gave me an url and told me they wanted a logo similar to the one on that website, and then asked me to deliver:

    (1) a price estimate/quote :
    (2) your cell phone number:
    (3) And will like to know if you are the owner ?

    I answered back with an estimate, and within minutes (which never happens; another giveaway) they gave the green light, and asked me for my address and personal information, because they were going to pay 80% of the bill upfront, to get things going because they were on a tight timeline and needed things done fast:

    1. Full name on check:
    2. US Mailing address with Apt/Rm # if needed (No PO Box):
    3. Your direct cell phone number :
    4. 80% deposit amount due:

    I answered them because I was curious; I am not based in the US, so I told them payment had to be done via wire transfer, or PayPal.

    Their response; another confirmation that this was a scam:

    “I cannot do that. I will have problem with IRS if i do any other payment different from check. You have to understand that i will be putting my business on the line and would not want that. I hope you understand how things work in the states and how strictly they can be to close down your business when you do otherwise.”

    It all ended after that. But today, I got this:

    Name:
    Linda McDaniel

    Email Address:
    l.mcdaniiiel24@gmail.com

    Message:
    I’d love to have a logo and brochure created for my new business. Please let me know your interest and would send you more details. Thank you

    Once again thank you for your post, I rarely comment, but I wanted to have this email addresses and aliases out there so others don’t fall for their scams:

    “Linda Crawford” Linda.crawford12@outlook.com
    “Linda McDaniel” l.mcdaniiiel24@gmail.com

    1. I replied to an enquiry on my website and got this same reply but the company was AMERICAN ESSENTIAL NUTRIENT INC. The Grammer and that they wanted to pay me in dollars made me suspicious as I’m in the UK. I’m pleased I found this website, I’ve now deleted the email 🙂

  15. Well well well, Mr. Shayne Row at R. Shayne Biz is a scammer too. I had a pretty good idea when he first contacted me and said I want
    12 pages with 14 products
    . I want only English language
    . My budget is $10,000-$15,000
    . I want the site running up in 4-5 month
    . Are you the owner
    But I was sure of it when I sent him a questionnaire and he only answered a handful of the questions, and left the rest blank. One of the questions he did not answer was for his phone number, and I think he tried to trick me because it was question #3 – he deleted it and put the next one in it’s place! I see a few other people were victims of this same person right here on this comment board.

    This is not my the first time I was scammed either. The first time was the Gacilia Nut Job. Yep! I got that one too but a slightly different version. And there was a third one, but I forget the exact details.

    Along with the 3 attempted scams, I also had a client stiff me for over $1,000 last summer. All of this has made me SO untrustworthy. When a recent client didn’t make his final payment on time because he ended up in the emergency room, I thought for sure I was just being taken advantage again. This time I wasn’t, and thank goodness I kept my cool and only left him one nervous, but polite voicemail. The other thing that really makes me angry is these people are totally wasting our time and making us work for free. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

  16. Scammers are seraching Indeed now.
    Here is the new one: Phone: +1 919-762-6944
    Email: Row Shayne rsbusiness1987@gmail.com

    Same pattern:
    The company is based on importing and exporting of Office Equipment such as Printer , Scanners,Laminating Machines,Dictation,Computer,Adequate Light,Desk,Multipurpose Machine,Software,Fire-Safe Bix,Network Router,Telephone,Paper Shredder and Personal Server so i need a best of the best layout design for it. Can you handle that for me ?So i need you to check out this site but i need something more perfect than this

    if its possible (URL Removed – it was an example of a wordpress theme with no real connection to the supposedly industry). I have a content creator that has the text content and logo for the site
    .the site would only be informational, so i need you to give me an estimate.

    .I want 12pages with 14 products
    . I want only English language
    . My budget is $10,000-$15,000
    . I want the site running up in 4-5 month
    . Give me your personal cellphone number
    . Are you the owner

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