Second Chance Offers Second Chance Offers are the play ground of scammers. They look over high ticket sold items and send a fake second chance offer email to the under bidders. The fact they dont have the item doesnt bother the scammer. Best to check your MY Messages in your MY eBay before getting excited or do what many buyers do and dont accept a second chance offer. We have even received emails from buyers who we did send SCO to verified we did indeed send the offer. To accept a REAL Second Chance Offer purchase the item directly from eBay site. Log-in and go to your My eBay or to the listing itself. Your second chance offer will have a different number than the original listing. Learn more on how to tell if your Second Chance Offer is real or fake
Phishing, Email Scam This is the most common scam. The scammer will send an email that looks like an official eBay or PayPal email. In the early eBay days these could be humorous as they often times where sent with very poor English or lots of misspelled words. Nothing humorous about these today. They look and read like the real thing. The attempt of the scammer is to get you to click on a link in the email. Once you have clicked on the link, you are taken to a fake eBay or PayPal page, where you sign in. You have now just given your ID and Password to a scammer. In a matter of minutes your account may have expensive items listed. If this happens go into your "My eBay" look down the left side and click on "Personal" from there you can change your password. Also click "Live Help" on the mail page (top right corner) and get some assistance from an eBay employee in removing items from your account.
A new version of this scam. The scammer will create a fake eBay page making it look like an auction listing. Then the scammer will send real email through eBay asking the seller if the item he has for sale is similar to "this one". The seller is directed to the fake page where he has to sign in. When he signs into the fake eBay auction, the scammer will have the sellers ID and password. Answering buyers questions will increase sales but you have to be very careful and question all emails.
Hijacked accounts Once a member has given their ID and password to a scammer, the account becomes "hijacked". Scammers will use this account to list items they dont have. Typically they will only take payment through a money transfer (Western Union). Buyers need to check the sellers past history. If the seller was selling Beanie Babies and suddenly starts listing lot of high end electronics, it would be a seller worth reporting and having eBay take a look. Do Not bid. A highjack account can also be used for mischievous bidding or for harvesting names and email address of those the member has done business with recently.
If your account has been hijacked, contact eBay ASAP. http://pages.ebay.com/help/confidence/isgw-account-theft-reporting.html#contact
Paid to much This scam the buyer will over pay (with a fake money order) and request you send the refund to someone else. Lets say you sold a $200.00 cel phone. The buyer wants to send you $2,000.00 and you are to return the $1,800.00 to a relative. After doing the kind thing, you learn from your bank the payment was fake. Now you are out the cel phone and $1,800.00. These scammers can be rather pushy. Since they dont really want the item they purchased from you, and the fake money order is worthless, they have little to loose tby sending payment even after you have told themyou would not fall for this scam.
No item This is not a very popular scam but I have heard members being taken by it. You've made your purchase and paid via a money order or check. The package arrived but either the box is filled with junk or has nothing in it. The seller used Delivery Confirmation so they has proof of delivery that PayPal will accept. In this case, you need to take the package to your post master. You might also get advice from others on the message boards. It is safer to pay via PayPal but even safer to pay with a credit card through PayPal. If you cannot get the help you need from PayPal, you can turn to your credit card company.
Partial Refund This seems to be a scam that is on the raise. Buyer will claim the item is not what they expected and they are not happy with it, yet they want to keep the item and request a partial refund. There are times when a buyer collects the type of item and knows more about than the seller, and there are times when the buyer makes these claims knowing the seller is an honest person who wants to make the customer happy and will likely refund part of their payment. We get a few of these and request the buyer send the item back for a full refund.
Shill Bidding Another common scam. This is where a seller will place an item up for auction. If they are not happy with the current bid, through another account (a family member, friend or a second account) will place a bid on their own item. This will raise the price or will insure the item doesnt sell for less they want. Not only is this against eBay rules, in most states this is illegal. It is hard to catch and when reporting it, you have to lay it out so eBay can follow the bread crumbs follow the clues without doing much work. When caught the seller is removed from eBay and hopefully arrested.
Report shill bidding here: http://pages.ebay.com/help/policies/seller-shill-bidding.html
Bid Shielding This scam was been pretty much removed by eBay. This is when a bidder places fake bids on an item to keep others from bidding. Lets say a scammer has his eye on a Superhero Batman figure. They seller started it out at .99¢ but the scammer knows the figure should sell for about $50.00. The scammer doesnt want to pay that much so he places a $7.00 bid. Then with two other accounts places a $100.00 and a $150.00 bid. Now, eBay shows the high bid at $105.00 and much more than it is worth. It is unlikely anyone else will bid on the over priced figure. With only minutes left in the listing, the scammer cancels the $100.00 and $150.00 bids lowering the currently high bid down to $7.00. eBay implemented a 12 hour rule. You usually cannot cancel a bid in the final 12 hours of the listing.
Fakes Lots of fakes on eBay. Bootlegs DVDs and CD. Counterfeit designer items and bogus signatures to name a few. Check your seller out thoroughly both on and off eBay before bidding and pay with PayPal.
Hidden Shipping and Handling This is a scam I surprised still works. The seller lists an item at a low cost without mentioning the cost of shipping, handling and insurance. After you win the item you find out that shipping is huge, and they require inflated insurance fees. Do Not Bid if you dont know the cost of shipping. Another thing to be careful of is manditory insurance or inflated shipping costs. This may not fall into the fraud category but something all buyers need to be mindful of. Most sellers will be up-front about the high shipping cost but keep the item low in order to either save on eBay fees or to attract more attention with the lower starting price. Factor in all the cost before bidding.
Switch-aroo We hear of this one once and a while. This is when someone purchases the item. Once they receive it, they are not happy with it and wish to return it for a refund. Once the seller has the item back, they realize the item was switched. Lesser condition item was substituted and returned. Some seller place a mark that can be seen under a black light (or just say they did) and once the item has been confirmed, the refund will be issued. In most cases, this will end the attempt to scam the buyer.
Fake Money Orders and Bad Checks
This is known to happen once and a while. Most bad check are honest mistakes and the buyer will make good on it if approached professionally. Fake money orders are another story. There is no chance at getting your money back. We have had approx 25,000 transactions and only have received one fake money order (a fake Walmart money order). If it is a payment that gives you that uneasy feeling, you can wait for it to clear the bank before sending the item.
eBay's guide format can not handle all the different kinds of fraud so we had to use two pages.