Social media platforms like Instagram are a way for 420 enthusiasts to connect with each other. Unfortunately, the platform is now being used by some to target smokers in need and scam them out of money. Accounts like the one that scammed me will follow smokers in the DMV who follow legal galleries and shops like Gifted Curators in DC. After following someone they believe to be a frequent cannabis customer, they send a direct message saying what is on their menu, asking where the user lives, and then saying they do delivery in that area. They also often claim to offer unbelievable deals, like a free preroll, cartridge, and top shelf gram with every order over $50. After convincing you to order, these scam accounts will try to get you to send money before you receive any product.
I Got Scammed
I hate to admit it, but I had to find out the hard way about these scammers by losing $140 to one of them. The specific account that scammed me was @marijauaguru2080 and had the name Runnerdcnowasap. The photos on the IG grid were generic posts of flowers and some well-known edible products. After I was scammed, the account changed to target New York cannabis users. In 2018, High Times published an article titled “Weed Scams are Trending on Instagram—and People are Falling for Them” about a cannabis photographer and “chronisseur” who often have their photos repurposed to scam people.
How to Spot a Scammer
If an account has only three likes on each of their photos without any comments or positive feedback on any posts, that's a red flag. Also keep in mind that legit shops and brands do not need to harass customers into buy things. Unfortunately, there are accounts stealing logos and photos from real shops claiming to be delivery services for them. This happened to Gifted Curators a few months ago. An account was created using the GC name and logo, then the account followed users and tried to solicit them for money claiming to deliver Gifted Curators products. Luckily after enough people reported the account it was deleted. The only legit accounts for the Gifted Curators gallery are their main Instagram account as well as Gifted Flowers.Smokers in the DMV looking for places to get cannabis flower or edibles, especially as it becomes legalized, should make sure to head to the dispensaries sections of our website for recommendations. Don't let yourself fall for an account like @marijuanaguru2080!