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Old November 4th, 2004, 06:31 AM   #1
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Watch out for eBay scams!

I don't know if this is the appropriate forum to put this in or even if this type of info belongs in a DVInfo forum but this is definitelly of public interest and if anything, is one more reason to buy from DVInfo's sponsors and other reputable stores.

This is a heads up and nothing more.

There's lots of scams going on on eBay, but I've identified one in particular and it concerns every shopper out there looking to buy expensive lenses.

I bidded on a 16X manual lens for my XL2 (a while back, I now own the 14x lens) and more recently, the 3X lens. In both cases, I did not win the lens and ended up being the second highest bidder.

In both cases, a guy contacted me after auction closing stating the winning bidder was no longer interested and he offered me the lens for my highest bidding price.

The first time was pretty bogus from the get go, the guy wanted me to Western Union the money to his sick brother in Europe (yeah right). After contacting both the real seller and winning bidder, I of course learned the sale was going through normally and nothing had been canceled.

It also happened with the second lens I bidded on, except this time, it was a bit more elaborated, with Paypal and eBay logos, like if it came through their site directly, with a more plausible explanation. Contacted the real seller one more time to make sure, and, surprise surprise, it confirmed this was also a scam.

So be very careful if you're shopping for lenses and using eBay as a potential market place. There's definitelly a guy out there that does repeated scams on those after auction closing, and he might even be posting bogus ads on eBay too for all we know.

If you don't really know what to look for or what you're doing when shopping on eBay, then definitelly avoid it for expensive buys and use reputable sellers like the ones affiliated here.
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Old November 14th, 2004, 05:04 AM   #2
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E-bay awareness


I too bid and turned out to be bidder number 2 and lost. A few days later I got a notice saying I could have the article for the bid I sent. I did some careful checking of the message and it was definitely from Ebay.I also contacted the seller. I went through with the deal and have a very nice PD150.
Over the next few days I got similar messages but some were so bogus... Some were pretty clever, but NEVER, was i directed back to ebay and the orinal seller.
All bogus messages i reported to ebay and got acknoledgement and some questions to help them.

Ebay can work but keep a wary eye.
Actually the seller I bought from is a member of this forum and had moved the item to ebay when it did not sell here. He was a great guy to deal with.

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Old November 14th, 2004, 09:39 AM   #3
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Yes, those frauds usually count on the fact that there's now a 2nd chance offer feature on eBay for second bidders when the winning bidder does not go through with the sale.

This is a nice addition but it makes it easier for thiefs to make up a bogus 2nd chance offer for an expensive item and have you beleive you're securely buying from eBay when in fact you are getting robbed.

Usually in those instances the "seller" will ask for a Money Order or Western Union transfer. Never will they accept to use Paypal or an Escrow service.
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Old November 15th, 2004, 08:48 PM   #4
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I too have been sent "second chance" messages after an item closed. They have always been legit and transact through ebay as the original sale would.

Scams are usually pretty easy to detect. Stay on your toes!
John Hartney
Elgin, Illinois USA
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Old December 20th, 2004, 01:25 AM   #5
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The big things to check for on Ebay when buying are...

1) Make sure the seller has a lot of positive feedback (obviously this won't help in the "2nd chance" scam)

2) Make sure the seller is selling the same kind of stuff they always have. For example do not bid on low priced DV equipment if this seller has only been selling hand knit scarves for the last 6 months.

You know how many times I m about to bid on equipment from what sesm to be a reputable seller and then make myself first check their other sales and see that they've only been selling said scarves, or are actually just have high feedback from buying, and then all of the sudden they have 100 auctions up for only the most buzz worthy equipment.

Ebay does all it can to make the sight/system great. Lazy people who let their accounts get hijacked (and not all account hijckings are the hijackee's fault), and people who support the off-site auction sales are the ones that detract from the site's usefullness and add to its propensity for scams.
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Old February 16th, 2005, 06:22 AM   #6
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Don't forget the SCAM where they try to pass themselves off as reps from Ebay or Paypal, and claim that they need to up date your credit card and billing info. I always forward these to "spoof at ebay" and they are always bogus.
It's mostly rusiian and east european scammers ( some Nigerian also). The funny one the other day came with the pirated ebay logo, but asked for my "informations". I answered back and told igor to bone up on his English grammar if he wants to be an effective thief.
Bruce yarock
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Old April 3rd, 2005, 08:17 AM   #7
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The very reason I stay away from Sbay (Scam-Bay). I might buy a battery or something small in price, but never a large amount of hard earned money. I tried to buy a GL2 off Ebay but wasted alot of time checking out the scams and reporting them to Ebay and I really did not get the feeling that they even gave a flip as long as they make their BUCK.
Good luck Steve
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Old May 6th, 2005, 10:48 PM   #8
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The truth is Steve, eBay can also hide golden deals if you know what to look for. I consider it a high risk high reward market place, but being an experienced and regular eBay buyer/seller, I know I can usually get a great deal on quality used gear.

As an example, I just found myself a very nice, almost new Vinten Vision 3 complete system (aluminum 2 stage legs, floor spreader and fluid head) for $900. It's about half the price of that system bought brand new (and it is not likely to brake, not now, not ever, this is Vinten).

I was also able to get a brand new Mark V viewfinder for $400.

Those are my most recent deals, but I got all kinds of great deals over the years on lenses, stabilizers, mics (got a mint MKH-416 P48 for about $600 a few months back).

Plus, since you're buying used, you can resell for almost the same price you paid, meaning virtually no loss.

It's all about being smart on your bidding. High end and pro stuff is where you find the best deals because not a whole lot of eBayers bid on very expensive items.

Brand new models of consumer level products (like headphones, cameras, etc.) are the worst because everyone wants the cool new and improved product, so you've got lots of bidders there.

I also never bid on items sold by powersellers with feedback rating bellow 99%, I always try to contact private sellers and exchange a few Emails prior to bidding. This gives a feel of his personality, his professionalism and his likeliness to help you in case something goes wrong. It is very easy to spot trouble sellers. The ones for example that take 2-3 days to reply to you and when they finally do, they write one or two very short incomplete sentences that barelly cover your original question. Those are the ones that will not cooperate with you in any way and by extention, those that might not lie about their products, but don't care either, so they don't double check and their quality standards are very low. Good luck to try to get refunded by those guys if your package gets lost or damaged in the mail.

On principle, I never bid on auctions from members with 0 feedback and I don't bid on ads that are overselling their bellow average level home brand products (absolutelly fantastic... it's the best... You can't ask for better...etc.)

Last advice I could give is be weary of sellers that only accept untraceable money transfers, like Western Union or Money Orders. I usually only deal through Paypal. Lots of complaints against them, but you can be sure it's a good way to weed out the fraudulent sellers because they do not use Paypal since it is directly linked to them (you need to confirm address to become a verified member). Plus Paypal offers a buyer/seller protection. I've never had a problem with Paypal and I've been using them for hundreds of transactions.

Can't say the same for Bidpay however. I've used them once. Never again. I sent the seller a money order through them, it got lost in the mail and they never ever got to send an other one after weeks of back and forth Emailing. Plus they don't have a phone number to be reached and their incompetent employees answer you with pre-written automated Email forms. It can drive a man crazy. Fortunatelly for me, I've only lost $50 in this ordeal. But I urge you all not to deal with them. You might not get a problem for a while, until the day the MO gets lost. Then good luck trying to get things sorted out by them.

eBay is a gold mine if you know what you're doing. I've made some mistakes in the past, but I don't do them twice, and I haven't been burned for a very long time.

Last edited by David Lach; May 7th, 2005 at 12:21 AM.
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