What with eBay being the largest online auction site on the planet, it was inevitable that eBay Scammers would soon appear on this massive global marketplace.
The eBay modus operandi is a simple one; it provides an auction site that links Sellers with Buyers. Its preferred and recommended payment option is PayPal, the world’s biggest online bank and by no coincidence owned by eBay. eBay scammers use this auction site to scam you.
So, how does an eBay Scammer operate? Well, it would be impossible to list every way, as these are limited only by the ingenuity of the eBay Scammers. So, here are a few tips and pointers to help you trade safely on eBay:
Some Anti eBay scammer guidelines.
1. Check Out Your Seller. Look at their Feedback Rating and Comments.
2. Check Out the Item on Sale. Look at the pics of the Item. Do these look as if they have been taken at home, or are they lifted from a website? Many Sellers are too lazy to take their own pics and they steal them from others. This means it is impossible for you to see what you may be buying. It is worth asking such Sellers to upload some pics. If they refuse, walk away.
3. All eBay Sellers have to include PayPal as one of their accepted payment options. PayPal offers both Buyers and Sellers its Payment Protection, where in case of a Dispute it will arbitrate and has the authority to refund payments where deemed appropriate. If you are selling on eBay, be wary of Buyers who want to collect your Item in person. If you do permit this, or if your Item is too heavy/large to post, then you should NOT accept payment by PayPal. There are 2 reasons:
a. The eBay Scammer may pay via PayPal using a dodgy bank card. The payment will clear into your PayPal account for a short time (perhaps 24 hrs) before it bounces (PayPal calls this a ‘charge back’). Meanwhile, the eBay Scammer has collected the Item from you and once the payment becomes a charge back, you will be left out of pocket.
b. In event of an ‘Item Not Received’ (INR) Dispute being opened, PayPal insists that the Seller provides it with an online Tracking Number, confirming delivery. If the eBay Scammer has collected the Item in person, you will not have a Tracking Number. The eBay Scammer may then raise an INR and ultimately, PayPal will refund the Buyer in full. The Seller has then lost both the Item and the payment.
Visit the eBay Security Center where they provide resources to keep your eBay computing experience a safe one.