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Always concerned about scams, how much do escrow services actually protect you? Is there still a risk - or is it just smaller?


There seem to be lots of ads popping up in the classified sections lately where people are selling either refurbed or new plasmas for cheaper than they should be (sometimes almost half price).


Deals always pop up that seem better than they should be. If I could see the item in person, then that would pretty much eliminate the risk. But in the cases where the items are out of state, do escrows work well? I heard about the money-gram scams - do those apply with escrow services too?


Thanks!
 

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This is just me personally, but I would never ever buy a plasma from Ebay. If there is a problem or any kind, you want at least some sort of service, even from an internet company that is at least real. If you are looking for discounts I recommend the AVS forum sponsors.
 

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People often equate these "escrow" services with the escrows provided by banks when you buy a house, which of course are 100% safe. But they are not at all the same, and as HTnb says, it may be that a crooked dealer has set up his brother-in-law to peddle phony escrows.


I would not buy an expensive item like a plasma TV from ebay or anyplace else that won't accept credit cards (and NOT Paypal, BTW) any more than I would buy one from some guy parked in an alley selling them out of the back of his car. I might make an exception if the seller lived nearby and I could visit him personally, but even then "caveat emptor."
 

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There are some legitimate plasma sellers on eBay, primarily the ones that also have another established presence on the Net. However, there are several I have noticed that have scam written all over them


- zero feedback - you want significant positive feedback history, and even that needs to be examined.

- lots of feedback, but NONE for plasma sets. One guys has sold nothing but $2 baseball cards before. All of the sudden he has a dozen $5K plasmas for sale. Uhuh.

- no current feedback - hijacked an idle account

- suspicious feedback - feedbacks same day as close of auction. That's evidence of shilling.

- ads copied from other more legitimate vendors

- wire transfer only or holds PayPal for 72 hours

- no location


Also, there a a huge number of fake escrow services set up by scam artists. So NEVER use an escrow service the seller mentions. You can do a Google search for escrow scams or the specific escrow account and discover whether it is legitimate.


Bill
 
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