PERFORM YOUR DUE DILIGENCE!
Updated: May 31
It takes a lot to make me angry (said me never). Yesterday just so happened to be one of those days. In fact, it is currently just after 5:00 in the morning and I am still thinking about what transpired. As such, I thought I would stop working on my homework and do my civic duty by writing this article.
It all started the day before yesterday…
Here I was, going about my day, when all of a sudden my handy dandy cell phone made a blurpbleepblarp sound that was all too familiar to me. Oh yes, I had a private Facebook message. With that, I swiped up on my screen, tapped out my password (don’t ask me what it is as it’s a secret), and proceeded to click on the notification that promptly took me to my farm’s inbox. I read the message, then began to type out a response.
“Yes I do. I have four bucklings available,” I commented. I went on to explain what I had available, the fact that they are all registered, intact, etc. etc. I even sent pictures of the little darlings. You know, all the important stuff one conveys to a potential buyer when selling kids of the Caprine kind.
Our discussion continued on for a bit and ended with me thanking her for putting a deposit on two of the sweetest little boys that would eventually be her very first herd sires as she is just getting started raising goats. In fact, these were her very first goat purchases. Her next task at hand included searching far and wide for adorable, registered Nubian doelings.
As I was sitting on the back porch enjoying my morning cup of coffee the next morning, I heard the blurpbleepblarp sound coming from my phone once again. Swipe up, tap, and click. I had a notification from the young lady that had contacted me the day before letting me know that she has located some doelings. I could hear the excitement in her message. In fact, I was excited for her, until she sent me pictures of them.
Oh no! I started getting a very uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach. However, I did not want to assume that what I was seeing was really what I was seeing. But I knew based on experience that what she had put deposits on were not full-blooded registered Nubians. I questioned the young lady about it and she assured me that the seller told her they were full blooded and registered. I asked to see copies of the posts, told her that I was excited for her, and left it at that.
My stomach was in knots for the next several hours as I mulled over what I should do. Eventually, I did this thing. Yep. I located one of the sellers on Facebook and sent him a private message asking if he had any doelings available. It was just my luck (can you hear the sarcasm in my voice?) , he did!! He sent me a picture of a group of Pygmy goats (those were the ones I was hoping he would send me). I then asked if he had any Nubian doelings available. It was really my lucky day – he did! He sent me a few pictures. Looking at the images of adorable goat babies, I then asked if the Nubians were mixed with Pygmy, then quickly added on that if that were the case, that would be awesome (more of that lovely sarcasm)! I could not believe my good fortune when he stated that they were! But my heart, in reality, sank. He sent me the same pictures that he had sent my newly acquired friend, the ones that she had already paid deposits on.
Not only was he attempting to sell me does that were obviously not available, but he was selling them to her as full-blooded registered Nubians and to me as registerable (that’s not happening) Pygmy / Nubian mixed goats. With that, I told him I would love to get them but would have to check with my husband first. I would get back with him as soon as I talked to him.
The next thing I did was put on my Information Security hat (my real Monday through Friday daytime job) and got busy doing some additional checking up on this swindler. Then, once I had the facts in front of me, I contacted the young lady to let her know what I had discovered. That was one call I did not want to make but I felt it needed to be done. In the end, she was glad I did.
Now, this is where my article gets important to you…
Like so many of us, you (may) make purchases on the Internet time and time again. We can buy things posted on Facebook, Craigslist, general websites, or from wherever things are sold. But, have you performed your due diligence before doing so? If not, you might want to start before you are taken advantage of like this young lady.
Here are some things to watch out for that should make you go hhhmmmmm:
This guy has no real Facebook history.
There are no pictures of goats, other livestock, farm life, etc.
There’s no associated farm page with pictures of goats, other livestock, farm life, etc.
His name in his personal URL does not match his stated name (the name on his PayPal account didn’t match either).
He has very few, if any, friends.
No, I am not saying that just because someone doesn’t have very many friends that they are frauds. Nor am I saying that one can’t have a maiden name in their URL versus their married name. What I AM saying is be diligent. Look for the obvious, and even the not so obvious, signs that something might not be quite right. Check out all that you can before doing business on the Internet. Be as confident in your decision as you can be.
Yes, I know this was a long article just to tell you to BE CAREFUL! But, I wanted to get your attention and I wanted for it to hit home. Just me coming out and telling you to dig a little (or maybe a lot) before handing over your hard-earned cash is an important thing to do if you want to lower your risk of being taken advantage of may not hit hard enough home for you to pay attention.
LESSON: Whether you are buying goats, a TV, stacks of books, a dog or a cute little kitten, perform your due diligence!