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Beware the Free-Loader! This Fake Washing Machine Scam Is Going Viral on Social Media . . . Again

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Jae Rew/Getty

The hunky laundry machine con man is back! Luckily, he’s still a hoax.

Last May, a post started popping up in Facebook news feeds warning people about a scam involving a man who pretends he wants to buy the washing machine of unsuspecting homeowners, but once in the house, turns out to have slightly more duplicitous intensions.

The viral posts, which featured photos of various attractive young guys, warned that the gentleman pictured was running a scam. The play: fresh laundry for free. He would pretend to be interested in buying a washing machine, but when he arrived to pick up the appliance, he would ask to do a load of laundry to make sure it was in working order. After the spin cycle, the man would say he’s going to get the money from his car and drive off with his clean clothes.

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Fortunately for those wishing to unload their washing machine, the original post, shared to a Facebook group called Vic Deals, according to Buzzfeed, has never been confirmed to be genuine. And the man pictured was likely not a con man with an elaborate way of doing laundry for free, but a guy a Facebook user wanted to embarrass by distributing his photo and name across the scam-weary web.

Now, the viral post is popping up once again with a new man’s photo, and it seems there are still plenty of gullible homeowners who are sharing the warning, this time, on Twitter.

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The new outbreak can be traced back to a photo posted by U.K.-based Twitter user @LukeDonkin11. His tweet, posted on May 14, has garnered more than 20,000 retweets in just two days.

Twitter appears to be a little savvier this time around, however, with commenters either calling out the scam as fake or commending the creative “bandit” on a bit of, ahem, good, clean fun.