Friday, 5 January 2007

A Rant About Ebay

I thought I would take the opportunity with this blog to write about something non-train related and it could be valuable to readers if you ever sell anything on Ebay, or if you know someone who does. Perhaps you have come across this scam before, perhaps not. However, read ahead if you have ever/intend to sell something on Ebay.

(Plus I do enjoy a good rant and am feeling slightly smug for spotting the scam immediately and not falling for it, thank god)

Being as money conscious as I (and indeed many people are after Christmas) am at the moment, I decided to sell my free upgrade from my mobile phone contract rather than actually use it. If I used it, I would only lose it, scratch it, and subsequently get upset. It’s a very swanky phone actually. My upgrade was a Nokia N73, about 20 models above the model I currently have. However, I am happy with my phone and simply don’t see the need to have yet another piece of expensive technology in my handbag. (Hey, I already have an I-POD Nano and a Personal Handheld Computer thing. Now this too?? I think not) So I decided to sell it. I listed it on Ebay with a starting price £150.00 and a BUY IT NOW price of £220. (from looking at Ebay, some people actually are mad enough to pay these prices!)

Within hours someone had done ‘Buy it Now’. I was pleased that the phone had sold so quickly. I was doubly please that someone was prepared to buy it for £220 straightaway.

BUT. It was a con. A scam. A cheat. Fraud. B@stard.

The ‘buyer’ emailed me requesting I send the phone to Nigeria. He sent me a fake email from Paypal saying the funds had been transferred into my account.

What a scam. Apparently, what happens is this:

They send you a ridiculous story about how they are based in USA/UK but they really need you to send the phone to Nigeria to their daughter/boss/uncle/vicar etc.
They send you a fake e-mail claiming to have paid the money into your PayPal account
You think the money is in your account.
You dispatch the phone all the way to Nigeria.
You never get any money.
You can’t trace where the phone has gone.
Item gone.
Money nowhere.

Incidentally, I tried selling another phone on Ebay on the same day. A Motorola L6. I bought it and decided I didn’t like it, so I am now selling it.

Exactly the same thing happened. A scammer asking me to send it to Nigeria and ensuring they would THEN pay the money into PayPal. How stupid do you think I am?!

But apparently people have fallen for it. You can read their sorry stories on this website..

And here is the ridiculous e-mail he sent me:

Thank you for notifying me about this item i won and I want to inform you that i have paid suficient money for the shipment to my son address in West Africa immediately i won your item, and it has been deducted on my account.The item is meant to be a christmas gift but as i am unable to to meet up i am making it new year gift.I would have sent it myself but i am out of town for An AID'S/ HIV CAMPAIGN RESEARCH.And i want you to send the item to him on time because i want him to receive it ASAP for New year gift purpose that is why i will want fast shipment to his place through Royalmail 1st class Service.I have paid GBP 40 for the shipment.T

his is his shipping address below:Name: Jide RichardAddress: 65 Ogunleti StreetCity: OjotaZipcode: 23401State: LagosCountry: Nigeria.Awaiting your fast response to ship when you get confirmation of the payment.Regards.

How DOES he sleep at night?!


Yorksdevil said...

I've never heard of that one before but have heard of others to scam money from ebay sellers.

Strandman said...

I nearly got taken in too with an over payment check for a some accommodation I was renting. This cost for a 3 week stay was £1200 and they sent 'by accident' a cheque from their uk company (Solicitors cheque) for £6k, asking for the difference. Smelt a rate...they were a 'Canadian couple' and emails came from there...until you run a 'tracer program' that finds they were in Africa. One call to Solicitors and oh yes we had our cheques cloned and we have close the account.
Very close shave...felt so foolish...

Happy new Year Scammers. It was good to hurl abuse at them when they tried to ask for the money!
Have framed the Cheque. police not interested.

the boy who likes to said...

I have to admit, when it comes to anything via the internet with the word "Nigeria" in I disregard it imediately.
I think I may even be a little prejudice towards any internet/Nigeria communication.
Maybe one day a real Nigeria might need my help while online and Ill dismiss it as the boy who cried wolf.
I hope this doesnt make me a bad person.

oe said...

I ony wanted to say hello.



Girl on A Train said...

I think I have turned the same, 'the boy who likes to' I am now really suspicious of all things Nigerian which makes me feel a little bad. But then again it is a country with public corruption issues and I don't have much to base my opinion on except for these minor Ebay incidents affecting my life. It's a shame. These few people are really giving Nigeria a bit of a bad name. Oh well. They can't get me!

Hello OE! Nice to meet you

Anonymous said...

If you send something without checking your account you deserve it. Get out of your sad me-world and pay attention to what is going on around you. The papers are always full of tales of scams. Open your eyes and remove thumb from butt!

Girl on A Train said...

Anonymous, some people are more trusting than others. This is the first occasion where I have experienced someone trying to scam me personally. Incidentally, I didn't fall for it, as I mention in the blog, as it was quite clearly a scam. However, some people do fall for it which is a shame. Not everyone has their eyes peeled for scams all the time.
I feel your comments are a little bit harsh, but they are welcomed as I enjoy a little debate from time to time. My 'sad' me-world is my world, so I don't want to get out of thank you very much, I am quite enjoying myself! (this is what blogging is often about, btw, sharing experiences from your own life with others.) Perhaps it comes across as self-indulgent and selfish, but I don't care,and I would be interested to read your own 'me-world' experiences if you would let me (ie. not post as anonymous all the time!)