I received an e-mail from an individual in Africa who states that he wants to buy my classic car and is willing to pay for the car and the shipping to Africa through my established PayPal account. He just needs to know my PayPal account number. Is this a scam, or legit if he in fact pays through PayPal?
You are welcome to conduct business with whomever you choose, but I'd proceed with caution. I don't know if you are selling your car on eBay Motors or through an online classified site, but a quick search of this forum will turn up several instances of people being approached to ship to countries in Africa where that country does not have the ability to use PayPal. They are approached to receive funds from a PayPal account in an approved country and then asked to ship it elsewhere.
I would also become familiar with the PayPal Seller Protection Policy that protects you in the event that unauthorized use of a credit card was reported for the transaction. If all of the appropriate criteria are met, you'll be covered; if not, you will be out your car and be expected to reimburse the funds that PayPal will have to reimburse to the credit card company as the business of record on the transaction. To be covered by PayPal Seller Protection, you have to ship to the address on record from the account where payment is received, and also have the transaction show as eligible for protection.
I certainly do not want to disparage legitimate transactions within the PayPal system, but the link below will take you to a guide in our Security Center that explains some of the best practices for avoiding chargebacks. I'd point out that two of our red flags are shipping costs being no object and being asked to send a location other than the transaction address.
You can find out more about Seller Protection in Section 11 of our User Agreement.