Sunday, 5 June 2011

Keeping Scammers Busy

I'm a little ashamed to say that I, am a eBay scam victim. About 8 years ago I was fooled by a very poor scam attempt due just plain poor judgment on my part. Everything about it screamed SCAM but I went ahead anyway and lost a fairly expensive item.

Oh well... I told myself. I was new to eBay at the time and I made sure that next time a scam appeared, I'd be ready.

I recently put a mobile phone up for auction on eBay and wouldn't you know it I've suddenly got someone offering to pay me easily 3 times what the phone it worth to end the auction early.

Great Device! i can afford to Pay you a fairly reasonable Price of £150 for the cost of the item and £15 for Postage. Immediate Payment will be sent via PayPal . Kindly get back
to me now with your PayPal email so that Payment can be sent

I'll admit they had me for a minute there. But experience told me to tread carefully so I replied with this. Just in case they really wanted to pay that much money for a very cheap phone.

No problem. Just to confirm, that's £150 UK sterling plus £15 for shipping. As soon as the payment is received I'll ship the item airmail tracked.
A few minutes later I got this and my suspicions were confirmed. The english isn't quite there, and there's suddenly the pressure to get the item shipped. Also they're encouraging me to check my email instead of my paypal account.
Payment sent! pls check your email for the confirmation email from PayPal and end the item on eBay right away. i also provided you Postage details there.Thanks and Please let me know when you Post it Today


I also received this,

How real does that look, at first glance anyway? In fact I had to check my paypal account just to make sure, I have a tenancy to misread things. Anyway my paypal account still says 0 and knows nothing at all about any pending transactions. So... What to do...

Naturally I've reported all of this to eBay and Paypal and I didn't end the auction... not that they seemed to even notice. Anyway I replied with this.

I've put the phone in the post today. The tracking number is YR000700021GB

... The problem is that lots of these email address kept kicking back to me saying they were invalid. You know, they really could make it easier to fall for the scam.

Eventually I got this back.

Send the Tracking Number to the PayPal customer care email address on
the Payment Invoice. send it to
so that your account can be credited

So I did. Not at all noticing that the address is now @ who notices things like that?
I got this back.
This was addressed to my paypal address instead of my eBay username. They're getting better as they go along it would seem.
I got this three minutes later.

So I emailed back the person and told them that I'd given the tracking number to paypal, and I got this back.
Aw, I put a lot of thought into making up that tracking number.
So I sent them this.

Perhaps because it's just been posted this morning. Sometimes it takes a little while for their system to update.

The next morning I got a fairly threatening email saying the tracking number was definitly invalid and I also hadn't cancelled the eBay auction... I was shocked. Being told off by a scammer somehow took all the fun out of the game. So I politely emailed back and said that the information I provided to him was just as authentic as the information he'd sent me.

I've not heard anything back from them.

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