I presume it's much the same in other breeds, but we who own Gypsy Horses have been alarmed by the increasing numbers of scam ads.
These ads are appearing on Craigs list and many very popular equine sales websites.
Many of these ads give a different (false) name of the owner from ad to ad, and often different telephone numbers. They most often, show pictures of a horse belonging to someone else. Many times they show a stallion, but advertise it as a mare. Most of the time, it's a picture of a well known horse in the breed.
The ad often looks to be "too good to be true", but newcomers can easily be fooled. Many times the horse is advertised as an "adoption" with a small fee.
We really do need to keep an eye on our own breed and what is being advertised for sale on these sites. The site owners are very good about deleting an ad, once it has been brought to their attention that it's fraud.
A lady in our own breed, (thankfully) wrote to me recently, to ask what I thought of a horse she was buying. I immediately knew the horse was a stallion whom actually belonged to a friend of mine. Luckily, she had not sent money, but I'll bet there were others who did. It's going on a lot more than we might know and I imagine in many breeds.
I know we all don't have lots of time to spare, but do, if you have a little time, look through ads on equine for sale sites in your own breed. You might be surprised at what's going on and even find your own horse pictured.