This story was updated on Friday 26th October 2007 16:59 GMT to add comment from eBay public relations. The trial of a UK man suspected of defrauding eBay users was scuttled after an employee for the online auction house abruptly left the island before offering key testimony. According to the Herald Express, eBay employee …
eBay fraud is more the rule than the exception
I purchased a small computer part on 20 September. With shipping, the amount was about US$13. I paid by bank money order and the seller marked it "paid" on 22 September.
I have not received the item. The seller claims it was "shipped and returned." eBay has not addressed the dispute which I opened on 22 October.
If I have not received satisfaction by 22 November, I shall file a claim against the money order (with the bank) for fraud, and report eBay to the State Attorney General for conspiracy to commit postal fraud. they can out the seller, or not; I don't care.
Last time I looked, both Exeter and Belfast were in the UK...
EBay really don't seem to care that much about fraud
eBay could do a lot more to stop fraud.
An example I'm personally familiar with is memory stick cards. I bought a 4Gb card which turned out to be a fake. The seller had a good reputation but the card was a phony. I found out when I tried to copy 4Gb of stuff to it and it broke at 256Mb. The sad thing is that people don't bother with this simple test and so these conmen build up a good reputation. It takes a good while until the complaints catch up. Then eBay belatedly shut them down but not before they've opened another store.
I expect fraud is so rampant in certain types of item such as memory sticks that eBay should really tack a big warning notice to every sale informing bidders how to tell bogus items, how to report frauds etc. Winning bidders should be reminded of this info a week or two afterwards as well. Anything to force these stores to be shut down sooner than they've been able to get away with so far.
Some kinds of auctions should be banned entirely. Search for "wholesale list" and witness the utterly deceptive practices used. You will see hundreds of items that at first glance appear to be selling TVs, laptops, trampolines etc. for cents. But they're not, they're tagging their wholesale list with a picture of those items but your buying a worthless email. eBay could effectively snuff out this scam by banning pictures and confining wholesale lists to a text only section with strict rules on the sale.
Do they do this? Nope. And that's just two examples. I'm sure there are many more. eBay could be doing a lot more to stamp on fraud and the fact they don't gives the appearance that they really don't care that much unless it's reported to the police.
Typical... nothing turns up via ebay!
Marvelous isn't it... ebay blah.. blah about fraud protection and we look after you and they can't be bothered to turn up at the trail. Like alot of things on eBay... you order it and it doesn't bloody turn up.
I lost 560.00 to fraud, ebay, gave me 75.00 to ease my pain.
They don't help what-so-ever, they did not call the police, issue warrents, or anything, though they knew the names and addresses of the sellers.
Don't use eBay
I've not used eBay for a year now and highly recommend nobody else does. You might get a couple of bargains on there, but then you WILL be defrauded, no matter how careful you are.
Me - I lost £300 when selling a phone, and eBay/PayPal had the audacity to assume that *I* was the fraudster when I made the complaint, as I was the seller. £300 out of pocket, eBay/PayPal accounts terminated, and the worst customer service I have EVER experienced bar none.
I'm surprised eBay and PayPal are even legal, frankly, the problem with fraud has reached epic proportions. I'd trust an email from a Nigerian asking if I can transfer a million pounds more than I trust eBay.
Time someone taught these half wits a lesson
No, I'm talking about the lawyers and judges - not Ebay.
If this guy came in on Sunday it was because he was told he would be required on Monday. I can totally understand him getting annoyed and deciding to piss off after two days waiting.
I work with a guy that had to give evidence in a trial like this, the idiots that run the legal system expect you to sit around on your ass until they are ready to ask you stupid questions.
typical ebay business practice
As long as they get their listing fee and final value fee they are not interested in doing anything about fraud. Tens of 1000s of fraudulent, fake, misrepresented items are on sale now. Hurry, go and bid so you can make a scammer and eBay shareholders richer.
I've been an avid ebay-er since 2004-ish. I havent bought any expensive electronics or gadgets etc. Most expensive thing I've bought is a refurbished iPod so that I could break its insides and see how it worked etc. A side project for a class of mine. Apart from that, all other transactions have gone on hitchless.
Hence, it comes to me as a surprise that so many people have been frauded on that site. I've been tempted to buy electronics though, especially memory sticks/flash drives but then I thought "If i happen to get a wrong amount of memory, I have no way of proving my case that I havent switched it out with a smaller memory size and am now complaining to make a profit.". This point alone has kept me from bidding on stuff like that.
Maybe Im being cautious but the last thing I want to do in an age such as ours is send money to someone who I know off the internet.
Amazon are not much better
The Amazon 'marketplace' seems to be as full of fake memory stick/flash cards and who knows what else as ebay, and Amazon seem to have just as little interest in cleaning it up as ebay. If you do buy a card from these clowns, find the serial number and stick it into google, chances are if its a fake it'll appear on a forum post.
Right well it's ebay
The only people I ever met that sell on ebay got busted for stealing phones and ipods from major retailers to sell there they got caught in the act but as far as I know never got any grief from ebay slimy light fingered teenagers and more con men than you can shake a mouse at. I wouldn't buy anything off the site.
A bit more skeptical
My gut tells me there's more to it than just impatience. If he was there to testify, I'm sure he was on the line with eBay legal at least once a day, and wouldn't leave without their say so. Plus I'd bet money that all ticketing is done through the eBay travel department.
Approval would be needed, if not direct instructions to hop a plane.
Did someone worry that if he was to testify it may set a precedent that would require representatives hopping all over the globe to get sworn in. Or maybe someone decided that they didn't want "on the record" testimony that could come back and bite them in the ass someday.
Given that he's still in the UK...
...it probably wouldn't be that difficult to put in a call to the nice chaps at the PSNI, get them to pay him a friendly visit, arrest the bugger and send him back to court to give his testimony, would it?
I was shafted out of $2500.00 by a scammer in Britain and e-Bay was absolutely no help whatsoever. They even restored the theif's account to him until I complained he was running the same racket again!
If eBay were a P2P network they would be shut down ?
Strange, on one side the Record industry are trying to shut down P2P networks as some users choose to do illegal things on it.
If the same was to follow, should eBay be closed down as some users choose to be be bad boys and girls.
What next, close the road network as this would stop people speeding.
To even consider diverting a full plane load of passengers for a witness who turned on a voluntary basis is complete stupidity.
Nah, the PSNI wouldn't pick him up. They are too busy harrassing teachers who talk in the "leprachaun language".
@ Graeme Hart
Well said, i agree with you to the extent that the guy did right to piss off. Maybe a lot more should until the Courts get their act together.
The Courts in this cuntry ( spelling correct!!!) are a disgrace.
But half wits? idiots? Lawyers sat on their arse for a full day for a £k a day? Lying b*stards when they get there.
Just who are the half wits? The taxpayers.
If e-bay pulled half the frauds the Courts do then i would get worrried.
Arrest a voluntary witness?
It's bad enough being arrested as an involuntary witness.
The Judge's thoughts on turning the plane around remind me of Doctors.
"last month we had 213 people didn't turn up for an appointment".
What they didnt say was that "we, the Dr's didnt turn up on time for the other 1637 appointments that month either "
Which is odd considering the 213 vacant appointments.
Courts are no better.
It depends. Of course you're likely to get defraued, especially on tech items, but look carefully at the auctions and the sellers. If you don't try to buy 16GB flash drives and stick to other, stuff you'll be fine. I've been on eBay since 2004, I have 100% feedback for over 150 transactions, and recently I bought a nice pair of 1957 sixpence cufflinks for somebody who just turned 50, as well as a book from the same year (in as-described condition) and I've also bought spare hinges and some memory for a laptop. Yes, I've had very small defraudings most times (usually on mis-described items), and in those cases, about 75% have been genuine sellers willing to do an exchange or return.
Yes, the world is full of fraudsters, but please don't make it easier for them by being a brainless twat. Use a little common sense (and staying away from the .com and .co.uk sites helps, although try getting a .de seller to post outside of Germany... ouch).
For D.A. - NI NOT in UK
Actually you are incorrect. The UK is England, Scotland and Wales. If you look at your passport and look at the correct manner of saying it we are the "UK and Northern Island".
There is some ridiculous tosh in the comments here...
The vast majority of them seem to be "I was scammed, so eBay is crap". Has no-one ever explained that anectodal evidence proves absolutely nothing at all? The worst is the person who claimed that "eBay fraud is more the rule than the exception". Funny that - I have a feedback rating of 300+ with no negs or neutrals, and I have only had reason to give out a neutral rating twice (and no negatives). Doesn't sound like the rule rather than the exception to me. And I tell you what, the proportion of good experiences I've had is significantly BETTER than my experience in most retail shops.
You've got to remember where you're shopping. If you go down the local market, you don't expect the same sort of experience as you get at Harrods.
@Jason Togneri - how true. Don't blame eBay for the fraudsters, blame society and their brainless victims with their something-for-nothing attitude.
I'm fed up of hearing people bleating on about how they've been scammed - well, don't be so bloody stupid then.
A credit card is your friend
If you want to stop getting defrauded then just use your credit card via the paypal service. It is what I do. Any problems and the money is not returned, speak to your credit card company. Paypal would then have to fight with the seller to get their money back and you can be guaranteed it will be the only time they will try - when they, not you, are out of pocket.
To Neil Weller,
No, you are wrong. England Scotland and Wales is Great Britain (or after successive useless governments, Britain). Add Northern Ireland into the mix and you get the United Kingdom (or UK). Ignore the passport - it is wrong.
"You've got to remember where you're shopping. If you go down the local market, you don't expect the same sort of experience as you get at Harrods."
Never a truer word said. Ever since Fayed took over Harrods has turned into an Egyptian bazzar selling mainly overpriced tat for tourists, maybe he's a bit homesick. Local markets offer much better service and quality.
For Neil Weller
Follow your own advice and look at your passport. You clearly didn't. Of course Northern Ireland is the United Kingdom.
It's the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Great Britain being England, Scotland and Wales
@ Neil Weller
Actually, that's the wrong way round. The full title is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Great Britain = England, Scotland and Wales.
D.A. is correct. My passport says 'United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland'.
The UK's full title is "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland". Great Britain is Scotland, England and Wales. The UK is Great Britain AND Northern Ireland.
BTW, why does your passport say "Northern Island" ?
@ Neil Weller
Neil, did you get your passport off a Kiwi on eBay???
My passport is United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.... not Northern Island...
Its been generally a good experience for me bar one thing when i bought a stereo for 150quid, didn't receive it, opened a dispute thing in pay pal and got 50quid back. Ebay is going to have to pull its socks up before the general public decides that it is too much of a risk and goes elsewhere (unlike the brilliant minds who read elReg who already know this...se above).
Can I just say to the twat who came out with "Nah, the PSNI wouldn't pick him up. They are too busy harrassing teachers who talk in the "leprachaun language"." You are an idiot. You and your type deserve to be on the wrong end of a baton round for such biggotry.
Ebay have stupid practices
Someone purchased an item from me on ebay, I was suspicious of the purchase (looked like a stolen credit card), unconfimed address (deliberate spellling mistake?). I refunded the purchaser and relisted. Ebay warned me for doing this?
Basically you have to sell to anyone no matter how dodgy they look, you can't refuse or you may get suspended. No online retailer would send you an item if they thought you were using a stolen card, so why is it different on ebay?
For Neil - look again
Your passport actually says: The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Before independence of the Republic it would have said United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Go and read it before replying.
Go read your passport again:
The United Kingdom of Great Britain AND Northern Ireland
GB is England, Scotland and Wales
UK is GB and NI
The Union referred to in the United Kingdom is the Union between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Re-read your passport, Neil Weller.
Great Britain is England, Scotland and Wales.
The UK is the United Kindom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
re: Amazon are not much better
"The Amazon 'marketplace' seems to be as full of fake memory stick/flash cards and who knows what else as ebay..."
Believe me if anything Amazon is a lot worse. I check Amazon for games for the kids and if there is a limited edition AND special edition you see LOTS of the cheaper one advertised as the more expensive one in the marketplace.
What makes me laugh is the fact that if you go to the proper amazon site you can buy the more expensive one for about half the cost of marketplace.
What is the country coming to?
"If you look at your passport and look at the correct manner of saying it we are the "UK and Northern Island"."
Er, you're thinking of Great Britain. The UK is the larger body. But I have to wonder where this witness thinks he is living? Despite the pretty shoddy experience, if it had been me I would at least have informed the court of my intention to leave. The implication of the report is that he just bunked off.
That's just impolite, and we don't behave that way in Blighty. I'm shocked. I think the rozzers should nip round to his place one dark night and extract an apology.
@Neil Weller : NI *is* in UK
but not in Great Britain...
It's "the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" (not Island...)
Just thought I'd add my name to the list of people who have been defrauded on eBay, and I would encourage everyone with a similar experience to do the same to help reveal the true scope of the problem.
In my case, the seller never shipped and was soon delisted, but neither eBay nor PayPal responded (beyond the initial acknowledgement) to my repeated requests for an update of the status/resolution of my claim. Fortunately the amount was small.
@Neil: Actually, if you check your passport, you will find that Northern Ireland is indeed part of the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland". So UK yes, GB no.
Er, no - a UK passport says "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Great Britain = England Wales and Scotland
United Kingdom = England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
British Isles = England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and The Republic of Ireland
It's amazing how many British people don't know the distinctions. I blame the education system, when I were a lad etc etc.
FAO Neil Weller
Actually the UK is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. NI is in the UK, but it is not in GB (GB is England, Scotland and Wales).
Wrong. It's the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
To Neil - NI is in UK
Neil, Northern Ireland is in the United Kingdom; the unity you described is known as Great Britain. Look are the passport again (if you have UK one), it is "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
I love Ebay, Can't really fault it
I've been on ebay since Jan 2002, I have bought & sold, all over the world.
I have only 1 neg feedback against me and that was in retaliation so I don't
think it counts.
The American buyers make things interesting as they don't understand I'm
not living next door to them and can't figure out what "£" means.
Selling to Americans' is usually entertaining
My Buying Tips
1> Always check out the feedback of the person you are buying from,
2> Always compare with others selling the same thing
3> Always wait, never buy on impulse
4> Always read the description FULLY
I'm currently toying with the idea of selling a 42" Rear Projection TV
I don't consider it a risk to sell or buy high value items from Ebay
AS LONG AS YOU ARE CAREFUL !!!
For Neil Weller.... NI Most Definitely IN UK
Actually, you are not right.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is what you can read on a Passport.
It just seems to bring out the worst (in) people
I'm sure that a lot of folks use Ebay very honestly. We do so ourselves. But I was saddened to hear some time ago of an individual in a large IT support company who pulls all of the trashed, changed-out, hardware out of their skip and advertises it as being in perfect working order. Personally I would be very wary of any hardware sold there.
Sorry, Neil, you're wrong. It's "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland", England, Scotland and Wales being on the larger of the 2 islands that make up the British Isles.
@NI not in the UK
Er yes it is, even if some people wish it wasn't. Our passports say "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland". England+Scotland+Wales = Great Britain. Great Britain+Northern Ireland = UK
No real problems
I've had one bad experience where a deadbeat seller was uncontactable, sold a part I'd won to another eBayer and was generally an arse. I'd paid by PayPal and the dispute was found in my favour (I'd kept all emails, along with communications with the other eBayer who got what I'd actually bid for).
So long as you switch your brain on and don't do totally dumb-ass things like use money orders, then you should be OK. I also back PayPal with a credit card rather than a back account as that gives me even more protection.
I normally buy motorcycle parts, DVDs and classic PC parts, so maybe I'm just lucky in that the people I trade with tend to be enthusiasts.
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