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MMD > Archives > February 2005 > 2005.02.25 > 06Prev  Next

Internet Auction Fraud
By Doug Anderson

I'd like to start by saying I really like eBay.  That being said,
I know I have to be very careful.

I won an item last year and attempted to contact the seller to arrange
for payment.  I must admit the item went quite cheap but that's one of
the draws of eBay.  I was anxious to make payment for the item for two
reasons.  First, that's the way I do business on eBay.  Second, I
needed the item for an upcoming project, which had an approaching deadline.

I sent emails through eBay's "contact the seller" option several times
a week over the next several weeks.  I received no reply.  After four
weeks I got an email from the seller stating something to the affect
that they had not received payment and were going to file a complaint
against me and relist the item.

I've purchased over 100 items through eBay and have _never_ had a
complaint.  I typically pay within two to twelve hours of the sales
completion.  I replied to the seller's email stating that I _had_
attempted to contact them many times with no success and if they would
only give me an address to send the money I would happily send payment.

Again no response, no acknowledgment of receipt of my email.  So after
a week I contacted eBay and ultimately sent copies of my correspondence.
eBay could have helped less, but I am not sure how.  I got several auto
responses, but no help whatsoever.

The would-be seller did file a complaint which eBay later removed but
still left the negative comment in my feedback, which calls me a whiner
because I lost out on an item and didn't pay.  Because of this I no
longer bid on items that do not list PayPal as an option.

A few months ago I got the "I want to buy the item you had listed"
email, and later, "Oops, I sent you $3000.00 too much, please go ahead
and cash the check and send me back the balance".  The check never

Doug Anderson

(Message sent Fri 25 Feb 2005, 04:17:20 GMT, from time zone GMT-0800.)

Key Words in Subject:  Auction, Fraud, Internet

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