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Saturday, April 13, 2013

Scam Email: Betty Hammond

Just goes to show you - scammers pretty much ignore what you say. They have their little steps to their scam and they will keep pushing you along, regardless of what you say, to see if you will go to the next level of the scam with them. In the below email, an artist has been approached by a scammer using the fake name of Betty Hammond. When the artist says the painting is no longer available, the scammer just proceeds along with what their standard second email says. Amazing. Obviously, it made no sense to the artist and the scammer blew their cover at that point.

Also, phrases like "I will be waiting to read from you." just really gives them away.

I remain grateful for the ignorance of scammers, that they continue to provide us such obvious clues to know they are not for real.

Just got this from "Betty Hammond", think it needs to be added to the list!

From: Betty Hammond []
Date: April 12, 2013 12:53:50 PM EDT
Subject: "Lady In Red" Oil, 18" x 20"

I'm Betty Hammond from California. I was going through your works and my eyes caught this particular piece,I want to purchase it as I am moving to a new apartment next month. Kindly let me know if you still have the piece available and also let me know it's final price and more information about it. I will be waiting to read from you.


On Apr 12, 2013, at 6:15 PM, Betty Hammond wrote:

Thanks for your prompt reply. You can reach me on (323) 835-1260.
Unfortunately, I'm on my way to France on an official trip(I'm a marketing Executive) and wont be back for another two weeks.
If you'd like to know, I'm relocating to South Africa soon and I'm trying to gather some good stuff for my new abode. I'm buying yours amongst others,quickly! before someone else grabs it.So, I'll arrange to send you payment ASAP.
However, I'll have to notify my shipper who's helping me move my stuff to get set for the pick up of the piece from your place as I MIGHT be delayed depending on how things goes.

PS: In the mean time, kindly get back to me with your contact address and phone# so I can get a check prepared and have it mailed out to you right away.


  1. Betty contacted me today about purchasing a painting. This is the 4th time I've been a target of art scammers. It always says something about moving to a new apartment. And usually the English is awkward like.... I'll be waiting to read from you.

    The scammer will actually send you a certified check (with an extra $1500 for the guy picking up the art)via Fed-EX, from another state. It looks authentic enough and your bank will deposit it. The two weeks later it's discovered to be a fraud and you are screwed.

  2. I get at least one of these a month and I always have to laugh when they mention a specific painting (or paintings) by name and then ask 1) the price, 2) if it's available, and 3)(only sometimes) the URL of my website so they can see more of my works. Hello? If you weren't already AT my website, how do you know the name of the painting and where did you get my e-mail address. Oh yes, a robot found it!

    They are ALWAYS moving to a new apartment or office, usually either in London or somewhere in Africa, although I have seen a few new ones that involve Oregon or Washington State. One recent one involved a woman moving from Colorado to WA because they had a newborn and her husband accepted a transfer to get a higher paying position in his company. Clever! They always have their own shipper and they always want to pay by Cashier's Check, but be wary of credit cards also. If and when I reply, I tell them that I only accept payments through Paypal and that I have my own shipper and I rarely get a follow-up e-mail. I did, happily, have a legitimate sale to a woman in Germany. Scared the heck out of me, but she was willing to use Paypal and nothing about the deal fit the scam patterns. It was real, deal done, happily!

  3. Hey, I just got one of these so I googled Betty. Nice to see this site with everything spelled out. Thanks

  4. I just got Betty's!
    I dont understand why they are doing does anyone benefit?
    so theyre sending fraudulent checks?
    whats the point?
    Nice to see this though, I was sort of going as far as i could with it...'

  5. There is a definitely cash payout for scammers who get victims all the way through the scam. They overpay with fraudulent money and ask the victim to forward the "extra" on to a third party (usually a fake shipping company), always via wire transfer (so it can't be traced) and if the victim does all this, it is only after their money is gone that they find out all of the original money was fake.

    So glad you did not fall for it.

  6. Thank you for sharing this! I am so glad I googled "Betty Hammond" and this post came up! I appreciate this info!

  7. Wow. Thanks for this.

    The first time they tried this it made it all the way to my gallery and they sent a bad check. Luckily the gallery refused to send the work until the check cleared which, of course, it did not.

    Heard from 'Betty Hammond' this morning and when I googled her this blog came up.

  8. This person is still trying to use this scam. They just tried to run on me, 5-14-13

  9. Thanks so much for this website! I have replied "Betty" they have been reported! Below is the Original email received, I have deleted the To email for privacy considerations.

    From: Betty Hammond []
    Sent: May-14-13 12:36 AM
    Subject: V Platter Glaze: Silky White on Porcelain Dimensions: 14" x 14" x 3"


    I'm Betty Hammond from California. I was going through your works and my eyes caught this particular piece,I want to purchase it as I am moving to a new apartment next month. Kindly let me know if you still have the piece available and also let me know it's final price and more information about it. I will be waiting to read from you.


  10. Well at least they paid the compliment of attempting to swindle me. Got the same email on Sunday... what a pain.

  11. thank you for the info. I discovered this before I sent my address. I deleted her emails and blocked the sender

  12. Thanks. I got my first today. Yes, it felt "scam-ish" but thanks to you, I don't have to wonder. Word for word. Amazing.

  13. She just tried it with me too. Was commissioning me to make a piece because the one she wanted was sold. So glad I saw this!

  14. Thanks for posting! they tried me too. Something seemed phishy about the process of needing a shipper to come get it when I clearly ship worldwide.

  15. Just received an e-mail from "Betty Hammond". I'd like to ignore the e-mail, but I'm gonna mess with this one.

    This isn't the first time this has happened to me.

  16. Just received a Betty Hammond email today - May 23, 2013. I couldn't believe when I googled her name that Betty Hammond California came right up in the search!
    Thanks to all for the info!

  17. Me too - all of the above. I shall inform her that I'd be delighted to sell her my work, once her PayPal payment is received!

  18. I just got one from the same person, and she said she is moving to South Africa,
    My son googled and found this post, can't believe she keeps using the same name.
    So creepy But very thankful for the post

  19. From Sofia Brown.

    Hi _______,

    Good to hear back from you. Yes,i will like to proceed with the
    purchase of the piece. I think it is a lovely work and i hope to
    give it a good home.

    I am presently traveling for my Sister's wedding even though it comes
    at a time when i am preparing for a big move to Saratoga Springs, NY
    but it means so much to her and i should be back in few days.

    Meanwhile, i will like you to forward your mailing address and phone
    number so i can inform my husband on where to forward the payment . He
    can have one of his PA handle the payment asap. I can also forward
    your contact info to the local cartage company that will be moving all
    our house decors so they can get in touch with you to arrange shipping
    details. They can arrange FedEx or UPS pick up of the artwork from
    your studio.

    I will look forward to hearing from you so i can know how best to
    proceed. Cheers.

  20. Wow! Betty asked if I would pay the shipper. I said sure although it struck a sour note with me. I never stopped to think of what those logistics would look like. Then I received a check that was 5 times the cost of the artwork. I immediately reported her to the fraud unit at our local police station and didn't respond to any communication she sent afterwards.
    Thinking the incident was over I was shocked when I received a second check and subsequent texts and emails from Betty chastising me for not responding to her. Again I turned both check and emails to the cops.

    Today I received an email titled "Local Authorities" from Betty in which she threatens to call the police and report me for attempting to scam her! I forwarded it to the police immediately and sent Betty an email stating that it was too late to report me because I had already reported her (police advised me to do this).

    I hope this will be the last of it.

    I share all of this just to let unsuspecting artists like myself of how tenacious these scammers can be.

    Thanks for sharing your experiences with me as well. My website is fairly new and I don't have much experience with on line sales and will certainly use PayPal only and do my own shipping.

  21. I found your site by googling 323-835-1260, the contact number my scammer finally sent me. My scammer's name is Bill Curry. Add that one to your basket of rotten apples.

    I corresponded with him several times until he gave me an address in Santa Barbara and a telephone number. I was so relieved when I saw your blog pop up. Thank you. I have posted your site on my FB page. I'm spreading the word!

  22. My wife was contacted and indeed harassed by a very insistent Betty Hammond for nearly a couple of months. Yes her husband was moving to South Africa. I searched the web at the last minute and thankfully came to your blog. My wife sent a note to Betty telling her that the deal was off and there was no reply.

    Betty or someone else might use the shippers name and address that was sent

    Name: Ebieritei Jerry
    Address: 98, sunset hill,
    langeveldt street.
    Vorna valley, Midrand
    South Africa.

    Thank you for your invaluable site. This experience has revealed the best and the worst, in terms of both, the potential of the web and human nature.

  23. Got the very same email today from "Heidi Schreiber." The "it's" and the period after the person's name are dead giveaways that it is the same scam that's been circulating around the Internet for MANY years.

    If you respond, they'll OVER-pay you with a phony cashier's check and ask that the excess amount be returned to them. By the time your bank lets you know the check is fraudulent, you'll be out whatever OVERPAYMENT you sent.

  24. Hello, just received very same email but Betty has changed her name to Heidi Shreiber, Marketing Exec from California and leaving for France but moving to South Africa. So very glad to see this information before being scammed!

  25. I hope you don't mind that I share your web address with my artist friends on Facebook along with the Betty letter I received - though mine was signed by Heidi.

  26. From: Heidi Schreiber []
    Date: August 23, 2013 4:22:01 PM CDT
    Subject: "A River Runs Through" Watercolor 14"x10 3/4"
    Reply-To: Heidi Schreiber []


    I'm Heidi Schreiber from California. I was going through your works and my eyes caught this particular piece,I want to purchase it as I am moving to a new apartment next month. Kindly let me know if you still have the piece available and also let me know it's final price and more information about it. I will be waiting to read from you.




    this email is a hacker and i want someone help me delete it