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Thread: Ebay Scam/Fraud

  1. #1
    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Ebay Scam/Fraud



    Mongo has been a member of ebay for about 5 or 6 years now. Has not sold anything and only purchased about 8 small items in all that time. All care free.


    In the space of about a week and a half now, he has found and reported 2 very large scams involving some high end good quality lenses Mongo has been looking to buy. The dummy listings were very professionally done and would be difficult to pick. It was only in the language used and approach that made them at all detectable. That, and the fact Mongo is extremely untrusting , suspicious and a pain in the **** with the sort of short questions intended to catch people out.


    Its clear these scammers do not trouble themselves with lower priced lenses. They will only get involved if there are many thousands of dollars to be made with the one transaction/buyer.


    Mongo only writes this to remind and warn others that this sort of stuff seems to be alive and well and living on ebay and, no doubt, similar places. Whilst ebay was very grateful for bring this to its attention, Mongo has some real doubts about what is being done about it or can be successfully done about it. Also, one would think Paypal (which Mongo uses) would have a very big interest in this sort of thing as it could potentially cost then a fortune otherwise.


    Beware ! ask questions and scrutinise the answers. Do not fall sucker to these guys - they are not that smart - they only succeed if buyers are not smart enough. call ebay if you are suspicious before you part with any money. Ebay only took less than a minute and a half to verify the fraud/scam in both the above cases Mongo mentioned.
    Nikon and Pentax user



  2. #2
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    Thanks for the warning Mongo. Would you care to share whether these were International sites or the Australian site? cheers Deb

  3. #3
    Ausphotography Regular MissionMan's Avatar
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    I think there are always a couple of rules when it comes to buying on eBay:

    1. Use paypal if you can. Paypal offers protection against fraudulent buyers, even if the account has been stolen
    2. Only use established sellers with good feedback
    3. Ignore threats from the buyer. I've had people threaten to have my eBay account shut for using Paypal. i.e. they try to force you to use a direct deposit after the purchase. Paypal has to be offered as a purchasing option and the seller can't have you blacklisted for using it.
    4. Ignore offers to purchase outside of eBay. Often they will try second chance the bid to someone else, even though it's been won. They second chance it to increase the number of people they can negotiate with and try get a payment using a normal bank account and not paypal.
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  4. #4
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    So, be aware of the wares on offer. No! Be aware of the offers on the wares...
    No! Be aware of both.
    Mongo, any chance of a listing, or would that be unsuitable?
    Am.
    Last edited by ameerat42; 16-04-2013 at 7:41am.
    CC, Image editing OK.

  5. #5
    Account Closed Wayne's Avatar
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    Always use a credit card to pay, even via Paypal. Paypal make the recovery very long and drawn out, going to and from when the seller is long gone, probably in an attempt to earn some interest on the money they hold that goes towards paying for the scams.
    Your bank via the credit card systems in place can draw on Paypal's bank for amounts that are disputed where the merchant (who is Paypal even though you purchased from a 3rd party) doesn't provide proof of purchase after 7 days of being notified of the dispute, and Paypal in my experience will always refund your money on the 7th day so as not to have a record of a dispute on their bank statements when you claim via your card provider. I have made almost $15000 worth of chargebacks on Paypal and it is always the 7th day.

    I agree with Mongo that I feel little is being done to thwart the scammers, and given the enormous sums of money each and every hour that is being processed via Paypal worldwide even just through eBay transactions, they probably are happy to factor in certain losses and put it down to maintaining the strategic advantage of providing Paypal protection. Just think of the fees they charge for receiving money when you sell an expensive item, they make a killing, now think of how many of those high value transactions in every eBay category around the world take place everyday and it is easy to consider why they may not be too troubled about paying back those who have been shafted.

  6. #6
    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant
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    to try and quickly answers a few of the questions asked above:-

    Mongo thinks they were international sites - not Australian. Mongo tries to use the Australian ebay and Australian sites as much as possible because he is sick of seeing stuff he might want to buy in the USA only to see "shipping to USA only" - waste of time. Although, Mongo will pick some select places to deal with overseas e.g the Matsuiyastore of Japan.

    AM - no point in naming specifically because the scammers actually use someone else's legitimate site to "piggy- back" onto for their scam. For example, one of the scams Mongo reported purported to be from Henrys of Canada which is one of the world's best known international photographic stores !!!

    Agree with Wayne - Mongo has his Paypal account liked to a visa debit card which he keeps only for these sort of transactions and only tops up that card with small amounts to cover the transaction - it is not a "credit card", so what can be drawn against it is limited to how much it has been topped-up. This feature is not overly relevant to a Paypal transaction but it does help when Mongo uses the card to purchase stuff generally and not just through ebay.
    Last edited by mongo; 16-04-2013 at 8:19am.

  7. #7
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    This sounds like the same scam I reported a few months ago.

    These crooks hijack a legitimate sellers website, hijack another sellers legitimate listing, it all looks kosher, but the give-away is that the unbelievably cheap 'Buy it Now Price' is only available if you pay by wire transfer.

    It all starts with a phishing email, and someone who is silly enough to click on an unknown link.
    Cheers
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  8. #8
    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cage View Post
    This sounds like the same scam I reported a few months ago.

    These crooks hijack a legitimate sellers website, hijack another sellers legitimate listing, it all looks kosher, but the give-away is that the unbelievably cheap 'Buy it Now Price' is only available if you pay by wire transfer.

    It all starts with a phishing email, and someone who is silly enough to click on an unknown link.
    this is exactly what happened in the second scam Mongo found. The first one was an offer of a "second chance" to buy the item at the amount Mongo had bid (but just missed out with). They were even willing to let Mongo make a "lesser offer" when he pressed them for answers.

  9. #9
    Ausphotography Regular MissionMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mongo View Post
    this is exactly what happened in the second scam Mongo found. The first one was an offer of a "second chance" to buy the item at the amount Mongo had bid (but just missed out with). They were even willing to let Mongo make a "lesser offer" when he pressed them for answers.
    Yup. Most are aware that Paypal locks the funds for a defined period (which is usually long enough for the buyer to verify that he hasn't actually received the goods) so they push for a direct deposit which isn't traceable.

    Most of the more recent ones I've seen seem to come out of China or Indonesia. We used to get them regularly for kitesurfing gear with $2000 kites going for less than a $1000. When we knew they were scams (they are normally obvious), we used to buy out all their eBay stock and then report them when they insisted on using a non-Paypal method. This prevented some of the less knowledgable eBay members from being caught in the scam and if you continued long enough, they eventually gave up.

    The scammers used to get very annoyed with us, threatening to have our eBay accounts closed and trying to give us bad feedback (and sometimes they did), but the moment they listed bad feedback, we'd send proof of the insistence of a non-Paypal based payment onto eBay and the fact and eBay would remove the bad feedback after a week or two. Realistically, if you buy out all their stock, they can't do anything about it because they can't report you to eBay. I don't purchase often on eBay so having something on my account for a week or two didn't bother me and if it stopped the scammers, it was a small sacrifice to pay.

  10. #10
    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    A couple of things I have done in the past:

    Google their ebay username and see what comes up
    Email them with a 'genuine' question. When they reply, google the email address.

    Both of these things can sometimes prove fruitful with information about the seller.

    Also if they do email back, you can lookup the 'header' information embedded within the email and it will provide the IP address of the computer they sent the email from. You can then use the IP address to do an IP location look-up and find where they are. Often it will come up with Nigeria, India, China, Russia etc, not the location given on the ebay account. Big warning signs are there, if people look for them.

    http://www.ausphotography.net.au/for...t=email+header
    Last edited by ricktas; 16-04-2013 at 12:28pm.
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  11. #11
    D750 Shines cupic's Avatar
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    A timely warning Thanks Mongo.I too have been recently scammed ( But unsuccessfully) in regards to my Nikkor 300mm f/4 thats for sale(And now pending on funds to another) that this so called individual wanted me to pay for the postage to CHINA and then in a fake Paypal email the funds are pending and will be released on proof from a western wire funds being email to Paypal then the full asking price +the postage will be paid to me.
    Well I email the scam to paypal and deleted all email received.
    Last edited by cupic; 17-04-2013 at 7:46pm.




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  12. #12
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cupic View Post
    A timely warning Thanks Mongo.I too have been recently scammed ( But unsuccessfully) in regards to my Nikkor 300mm f/4 thats for sale(And now pending on funds to another) that this so called individual wanted me to pay for the postage to CHINA and then in a fake Paypal email the funds are pending and will be released on proof from a western wire funds being email to Paypal then the full asking price +the postage will be paid to me.
    Well I email the scam to paypal and deleted all email received.
    There's that big alarm signal again.

    WIRE TRANSFER !!!

    All these scammers request funds to be wire transfers.

  13. #13
    D750 Shines cupic's Avatar
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    As of interest I did google map the address only to confirm that it was a industrial site in CHINA and an ugly one at that

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