Middleman Traiding Scam(Steam)
Estimated time to read: 2 Minutes
Since Steam gave its users the possibility to trade items that have actual monetary value – a whole new field of scammers emerged.
The middleman scam itself is not new, but it has taken many new forms.
The basic principle of a middleman scam is that the scammer uses/needs a third party in order to scam the victim.
1. The scammer will add you randomly as a friend and will ask you if you want to trade an item.
2. He will ask you to choose a middleman – a trusted Steam friend of yours – and he wants you to trade the item in question to them, for one or more of the following reasons:
- He does not trust you alone
- He wants to check that the item is not duped(trading does not show a duped item and duped items are not worth less)
- He wants to check that it is not “glitched”(such things don’t exist)
3. Once you have chosen a friend, they will add him so that everyone is in “contact”.
4. Now one of two things will happen:
a. The scammer will use a second account. He will mimic the account of your friend – the same name, the same profile picture. Now he will send you a trade offer disguised as your “friend”. If you accept, he will take the item and block you on both profiles.
b. The scammer will, again, use a second account. This time he will mimic your Steam Profile- your name, your profile picture. He will wait until you have send the item to your friend and then he will write your friend, aksing him to give the item “back”.
The signs of a scammer
Not everyone that wants to trade with you is a scammer, otherwise no one would trade. However, there are signs to spot one.
- He adds you randomly and instantly ask you to trade
- The profile is private
- If the profile is not private – he has a low Steam level, little friends and only some hours in-game.
- Be aware: Good profiles can be bought. If he writes more than once that you should “check his reps” and his profile in general- you should be alarmed.
- His texts seem generated or out of context
- If he needs to talk “out of script”, his English could seem broken or at least worse( a lot of scammers are not from English speaking countries)
- If he addresses you with “Sir” or says something like “kindly” he is with a high probability a scammer.
- Scammers also love to use “buddy”,”dude”,”mate”,”bro”
- Scammers become aggressive really quickly
How to avoid getting scammed
Always check the trading box! Ask yourself questions. Is this my real friend? Are this the correct items? Do I feel under pressure? Do i even want to trade?
If you don’t want to trade -> you don’t have to. You can cancel your trade at any moment that you want. It’s your item, your decision.