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Would you send money to a stranger on the internet?

(76 Posts)
TBHno Sun 23-Aug-20 23:19:34

Just that really.

I'm a big believer in charity. I occasionally give cash to the homeless. All of my unwanted clothes, books etc. go to charity shops. I have 2 monthly direct debits to charities that I trust.

However, I would never give money to a stranger on the internet. The only exception I can think of is Gofundmes of Crowdjustices.

A lot of threads on here seem to get deleted because people are being scammed into sending money. I just don't get this? In 99% of cases, it would be a scam?

Anyway, I'm interested in hearing if anyone has actually done this, and what happened after?

OP’s posts: |
BrieAndChilli Sun 23-Aug-20 23:23:56

I wouldn’t do it. I can see some people would think ‘it’s only a couple of £ I can afford it’ which is probably true but the scammer will be getting a few ££ from lots of people and then it just encourages them to keep doing it/other people to do it.

I remember posting a few years ago about affording new school shoes or something, think car had needed a large repair and had PMs offering me old shoes etc which was very kind of the posters but I was mortified as I was just having a rant and wasn’t asking for stuff at all.

Notcontent Sun 23-Aug-20 23:33:51

No, I wouldn’t, because ultimately you really don’t know who the recipient is.

selflove Sun 23-Aug-20 23:38:02

Yeah I have. A poster on Mumsnet. I figured if it was a scam, it was £20 I was happy to "waste" - just skipping a takeaway for me that week, and if it was genuine, then I was really making a difference to someone who needed to leave a dangerous situation ASAP.

MondeoFan Sun 23-Aug-20 23:39:00

I did and I believe it was a scammer.
Met on a dating site,
Moment of madness.

Pipandmum Sun 23-Aug-20 23:42:25

Nope. I give to registered charities and food banks. I'm not giving money to someone just because they ask for it, though I do occasionally give the odd fiver to homeless people - though I realise they may not all actually be homeless either.

DifficultPifcultLemonDifficult Sun 23-Aug-20 23:43:31

I have offered money to one person on here. A very long term poster who was going through a really tough time, a small thing (in the grand scheme of things) of theirs got ruined, and I offered to replace it. She declined.

I have also had money offered on here a couple of years back, under a different username, and I also declined.

Very occasionally I would take the risk of sending £20 to someone who i believe was genuine, and struggling. Not very often though.

PurpleDaisies Sun 23-Aug-20 23:43:42

No. It encourages scammers.

I donate to charities offering support to vulnerable people instead.

Namechange30000000 Sun 23-Aug-20 23:53:46

I gave someone £5 on FB universal credit group. They hadn’t asked for money, just posted about the food bank not having milk. He sent me a picture of 12 pints of milk, a receipt and offered to pay me back.

OnceUponALorry Mon 24-Aug-20 00:13:57

I sent a (relatively) large sum to someone I've known on line for about 2 years (it was a loan). He has met someone I know irl. It was something I wanted to do and the amount of money was okay for me to lose.

Not had the money back to date.

TBHno Mon 24-Aug-20 13:24:20

That is heartbreaking @Namechange30000000 sad

I think you did the right thing there, even if it was a scam.

OP’s posts: |
TheQueef Mon 24-Aug-20 13:27:01

Not mnet a different forum.
Benefit delay and new job caused big problems.
I did an Asda shop delivered to them.

Nothing went wrong but I wouldn't do it again. Too many chancers.

Hepcat75 Mon 24-Aug-20 13:28:21

I sent twenty quid about every three or four months for a few years, to an 'Eye Need' bloke in the 'Private Eye' classifieds. I absolutely thought he was genuine for several reasons. The bank account details disappeared from my payees one day about a year ago. If I was being scammed, so be it. I don't think I was and I hope he's ok. I've had my own financial ups and downs so it was very irregular, especially lately.

DontBeShelfish Mon 24-Aug-20 13:37:06

No, never. Mainly cos I can't afford it, but also because of scammers.

I did offer to pay for a food shop for someone on FB at the start of lockdown but that was someone I'd known a while ago, who'd lost their job.

It does make me feel a bit shitty sometimes, as if I'm deciding who's worthy of my charity, but equally I can't afford to be ripped off.

Hoppinggreen Mon 24-Aug-20 13:40:41

I sent a lady on here money for a Brownie Uniform for her daughter on here a couple of years ago. It seemed genuine and she refused at first and I could afford to lose it if it was a scam.
She sent me photos of her DD wearing it and photos of the receipt along with an offer to pay me back gradually so I am pretty confident it was real.

BlastedMolluscum Mon 24-Aug-20 13:43:42

I have, via a facebook antenatal group that actually originated on MN. We all shared stories and info etc and obviously could see each other's FB profile's but to all intents and purposes they were strangers. It was a collection for a lady who had had a hard time and needed a smile.

Noneformethanks Mon 24-Aug-20 13:43:43

No. Because it encourages scammers.

TheSunIsStillShining Mon 24-Aug-20 13:58:57

Gofundme can be easily used for scams as well. They do no checking at all.

AdelaideK Mon 24-Aug-20 14:03:16

No. I read someone on here sent £100 to a troll so I don't believe most of the sob stories now.

WellTidy Mon 24-Aug-20 14:07:03

Back when MN used to do a Christmas gift thing, where you could volunteer to buy a gift for a poster nominated by another poster, I sent gifts each year. Some years they were acknowledged, one year the £30 of John Lewis vouchers that I sent weren't. I have no idea if they were received by the intended recipient, or the circumstances or anything. And nobody owed me a thank you in any event. But I haven't sent money to a stranger since.

vanillandhoney Mon 24-Aug-20 14:16:32

No. I don't even support GoFundMe's or anything - anyone can set one up and there are no checks made to make sure they're genuine.

Floralnomad Mon 24-Aug-20 14:20:00

Definitely not .

Cocothefirst Mon 24-Aug-20 14:20:43

Yes, a few years ago. Both times it was money I could afford to lose.

Myself and a few other Mumsnetters were conned into giving money by a scammer playing the long game. Some people even met her but we started comparing notes when things became very dramatic.

Another time I met a woman who was going through a very specific terrible situation. Her plight was widely publicised in the mainstream media and I sent her something. I wouldn't have helped except I'd got to know her via another site and liked her.

I wouldn't do it again.

Erictheavocado Mon 24-Aug-20 14:27:16

Like @WellTidy, I used to give via the MN Secret Santa. I started it when my dad died and used the money I would have spent on his birthday and Christmas gifts (he was an almost Christmas birthday). I would buy and wrap a gift for each person in the house and if I could, I would also enclose something like a M&S voucher for some foodie treats. It felt more personal. I was very sad when MN stopped it, though I understand why. I don't like giving to big charities as too much of my money goes on admin. These days I donate several bags of goodies to our Christmas collection at work as some goes to some of our most vulnerable families and the rest to a foodbank. But no, I would never give cash over the internet.

CharityDingle Mon 24-Aug-20 14:55:39

No, absolutely not.

There are plenty of ways to help people down on their luck, for whatever reason. Sending money to an anonymous person who more than likely has invented a sob story, is not one of them.

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