Archive for Auction Scam

How To Avoid eBay Scams And Fraud: For Ebay Sellers & Buyers

Countless people have been scammed and defrauded on eBay. eBay is a fun place to bid on items and to sell items – but you must know how to recognize a scam, and how to avoid them, them or you quickly join the ranks of those who have lost their money to eBay scams. Of course, if you are scammed, there are some actions you can take the correct the situation – but in many cases, the scammer does indeed get away! The best option is to avoid being scammed.

You can easily avoid many scams with the payment method that you use – whether you are a buyer or a seller. eBay owns Paypal, and in most cases, Paypal is the payment method you should use. First, as a buyer, if you are scammed or less than satisfied with the item when it arrives, you can dispute the charge easily, and demand a refund. The seller must reply and show proof that the item was shipped, and that it arrived in the condition that you expected, or Paypal will return your funds to your account.

As a seller, you can protect yourself by only accepting Paypal. This will eliminate the chances of receiving a bad check or having the buyer dispute a credit card charge. Instead, they must dispute the charge through paypal, and you of course will be able to prove that you shipped the product. You cannot, however, prove that the product arrived in the condition that was expected. In this case, you should demand that the product be returned to you before the refund is issued.

Another common scam that buyers use is the bidding scam. This type of scam is run either with two separate eBay accounts – with one person in control of both of them, or with two friends with separate eBay accounts. A very small bid is placed on your item, using one account. This is followed by a very high bid, from the other eBay account. Right before the bidding ends, the high bid is cancelled or withdrawn, leaving the low bid as the winning bid. This bid can only be avoided by setting a reserve price – the lowest bid that can be placed is the same as the reserve price that you set.

If you are an eBay seller, you can further protect your auctions by placing a notice on your auctions page, declaring that you have the right to back out of the sale if you suspect potential fraud. As both a buyer and a seller, also beware of spoofed emails. These emails appear to be from eBay. The email may claim that you need to verify your information, and ask you to login to your eBay account, using the link provided. If you follow that link, the site looks exactly like eBay, but it is actually a scam to get your eBay login details, as well as your credit card details! eBay will never ask you to do this. If you suspect a spoofed email, report it to eBay immediately!

Don’t let scammers ruin your eBay fun! Just use good common sense, and a reasonable amount of caution, and everything should run smoothly. Report suspicious activity to eBay, and if a deal doesn’t feel right, simply back away from it and move on to the next auction.


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How to Avoid Being a Victim of eBay Buyer’s Fraud

From everything you’ve heard about the risk of fraud on eBay, you might think it’s only buyers getting scammed – but you couldn’t be more wrong. Here are a few common scams that sellers fall for every day.

The Rubber Cheque.

This one obviously isn’t limited to eBay – it’s been going on for years in all kinds of business. It works like this: a buyer sends you a cheque that they don’t have the funds to cover and you pay it in your bank. You then send the goods right away, only to find out a few days later that the cheque bounced.

The solution to this is simple: don’t send anything to a buyer until their payment has cleared, no matter how quickly they might say they need it. Advise them to pay electronically if they don’t want to wait so long for their items. Then again, if your items are quite small, you could just take the loss from an occasional bounced cheque. Think of it as a small price to pay for faster and better customer service.

‘I Never Bought Anything!’

This is one of the riskiest scams to fall victim to. In this case, the credit card’s real owner still has control over it – no-one has stolen their details. They have realised, however, that they can phone up the bank who issued their card to say that it’s being used fraudulently and they never bought any such thing, and the bank will often reverse the transaction without even investigating. The only way to beat this scam is to make all your sales through eBay, as they keep a record of transactions.

The Unconfirmed Address.

It is quite easy to steal PayPal accounts from inexperienced users: all you need, after all, is their email address and password. PayPal tries to protect against credit cards registered on stolen accounts being used to buy things by listing a ‘confirmed address’ for each buyer – an address that matches what is registered with their credit card issuer.

What many scammers will do is ask you to ship to a different address – unless you’re very sure of them, this is a bad idea, as they could be trying to commit credit card fraud. Be especially suspicious of anyone who wants to pay a higher price and get overnight shipping, especially if not even to the same country as the confirmed address. The fraudster is trying to make sure the item reaches them before they are discovered.

It’s up to you to take responsibility for fraud on PayPal, as eBay’s favourite way to refund fraudulent payments to their rightful owner is to just reverse it from you! This is considered an occupational risk of PayPal usage, and sellers who get burned severely sometimes go as far as moving to a rival electronic payment service. See for more.

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Tips To Prevent Identity Theft

Identity theft cannot be 100% fully prevented. To do so would require a policy of never sharing financial information with anyone, anywhere, anytime. You would not be able to conduct financial transactions in society with that policy. And even if you were able to, your information is already in the records of your physician, bank, the IRS, department of motor vehicles, etc. There is no way to remove this information. Therefore you could become victim to identity theft. However, there are steps you can take to reduce those chances. Internet mail is one of the main sources that perpetrators of identity theft are using to gain access to your personal information. The perpetrator may send threatening emails, or emails that seem appealing. Emails requesting personal financial information are linked to identity theft and arrive in millions of mailboxes worldwide each and every day.

In most cases, no one person is being specifically singled out to become the next victim. It is just not worth the effort involved. Identity thieves are not interested from whom they are stealing the identity from. Instead they focus on targeting as many people as possible as it is a numbers game. The more people they target the higher are the chances that someone will be tricked into volunteering personal financial information.

The senders of these emails are challenging the receiver by using deception, hoping the receiver will give out personal information, such as bank numbers, PIN and passwords, Social Security numbers and other precious information that the thief can use to gain control over your identity. Often these emails state that a bank account or Paypal account has been frozen until information is verified. The victim, being worried that pending transactions will not clear properly, will follow the demand of the email that account information be “updated”. The criminal who sent the email will always include a handy link to click on for updating the requested information. Never click on those links.

If you want to avoid identity theft, there are several emails that you may want to bear in mind are SPAM, and you should completely ignore them. One is the forzen account along with a request to update your personal financial information. Another is a claim that you have won x amount of cash, and to act now to receive your prize. If you have not joined a contest, then chances are you have not actually won a prize. A third is an email claiming that you could receive scholarships or grants to attend such and such a college; to earn your degree act now by providing your personal information. These are all fake and designed by criminals to steal your personal financial information. Delete them without a second thought!

Companies that already have your personal information, such as your bank have no reason to ask for this again in an email. In fact, most banks clearly state in their Terms & Conditions that they will never send electronic mail requesting information from the customer at any time. Giving your personal information to someone that sent an email that has your bank name listed in the header is only asking for trouble.

Identity thieves are extremely creative when it comes to stealing identities, including sending emails in respected names. The prestigious FDIC was targeted by thieves; the sender sent emails to recipients of the bank requesting that they provide personal information to avoid closure of their accounts. Microsoft was also targeted by thieves when emails were sent to various inboxes requesting the receiver to download patches to protect their computers. Once the receiver downloaded the attachment, a dangerous virus took control of their computer, leaving a backdoor entry that would give the hacker access to the information stored on the computer.

EBay is also a target for thieves. EBay scams abound. False Paypal payments are common, as well as false or counterfeit checks. Be very wary of anything purported to be from EBay that seems fishy. If you have to think twice about the legitimacy, it is likely a scam. Beware. Here are some helpful tips for you to avoid identity theft as much as possible: 1) Do not open emails if you do not trust the sender.

2) Never give out your personal information over the internet, unless you know that the company can be trusted and is using encryption to secure the web page(s). If Paypal or EBay request your information, which they never have done to this author. go directly to their home page, log into your account there, and see if the request is associated with your account. Never click the link in an email requesting information.

3) Do a background check on any site you are thinking of giving your information to or you are considering buying from. This includes calling the state attorney general’s office. 4) Change your PIN numbers and passwords regularly, at as minimum every 6 months. 5) Do not post even general financial information on forums, bulletin boards or discussion boards online.

6) Conceal your personal information at all times, including at home. 7) Never give your personal information over the phone line. 8) When using ATM or other machines to make deposits, withdrawals, or purchases make sure no one sees you type in your PIN number.

9) Do not just throw personal information, such as bank statements or letters containing your postal address, account numbers or any sensitive information in the trash. This is a favorite place for criminals to search. Put it through a shredder first. 10) Never mail your tax return by putting it in your mailbox with the flag up. Criminals will drive neighborhoods during tax season searching for tax returns. These are the ultimate sources of information for identity theft.

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