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Signs of an Art Scam

Since we at FASO have no control over the sales of your art, which are between you, your buyer, and Paypal, we do not have any way to intervene on your behalf if indeed a bogus purchaser used a stolen credit card.

We encourage our artists to make sure that the money paid has indeed cleared all hurdles before shipping any art. The responsibility for this rests solely on the shoulders of the artist.

We believe that insurance companies that handle art and artists have policies that cover situations like this.

Having said that, the safeguards we have in place have most certainly helped artists avoid costly and potential problems with scammers.

Our Advice 

If you have any inkling that a contact or potential buyer might not be legit, listen to your gut. It's probably right.

  • Always require payment through PayPal or credit card. 
  • Never accept a cashier's check or money order
  • Always ask your bank to verify the authenticity of any check you deposit from someone you don't know. 
  • Wait until funds have actually cleared the account that PayPal sends it to before shipping art. Clever hackers can even make it look like the credit has hit your PayPal account when it'll fail later.

Scam Art Guard

We have a system to protect our artists called Scam Art Guard.

If one person emails/contacts three or more of our artists via their Contact the Artist page, we're notified. We then view the email; if it's a scam, we blacklist the email and IP address.

Typical Signs of a Scam

  • asking to buy paintings and wanting to use their own shipping company 
  • buying a new house in the US or overseas
  • poor use of English

How it works:

They send a bogus check for more than the amount (for the shipping) and ask you to return the difference (with a real check) to them.

Then you find out that their check is no good. 

You're out all that money plus your paintings. We know of artists who were taken for thousands of dollars this way; don't be one of them. 

If you suspect a scam, you copy and paste the body (message) of the email into a search engine, like Google. When a search is run, the message will show up as a scam (or not) on numerous websites.

Check the website addresses in the search before clicking on them.

Legitimate websites will be familiar with the scam and offer ample information on how it works, who scammers target, etc.

Scammers are usually lazy and will frequently use the same scam, or the same email language repeatedly. This is why searching the BODY of the email, not just the email address (easily changed) can reveal a scam.

More Resources

Click Here to review all the FineArtViews Articles on Art Scams


Another resource regarding scammers: 

Email Posted on Website

If you have your email address posted on your site, you are allowing scammers access to your email address.

Please see this FAQ:
Can I display my email address on my site?


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