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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to warn everyone of a potential fraudulent seller on eBay. I won the following auction.
http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI...&ed=1000849730


It turns out the seller (ann_boala) is NOT from Phoenix Arizona, but rather Moldova. After I won the auction I contacted the seller and indicated I wanted to complete the transaction using an escrow service. The seller proposed I wire money to them in Moldova, and that they would not be able to retrieve the money until I provided them the 10 digit transaction ID. All of this sounded very suspicious so I contacted Western Union, and Western Union indicated that was true for some countries, but Moldova is not a country that offers that service, and therefore the money would be available as soon as I wired the money. At approximately the same time I received an email from a gentlemen here in the US that claims he was ripped off by this person. Luckily from everything I have heard here on AVSForum I approached this transaction with a great deal of suspicion which has paid off.


Moral of the story: If it sounds too good to be true it probably is.


Bryan
 

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I was almost ripped off by someone on the Yahoo auctions. Same situation, they only want the money wired to them via moneygram or western union. If you do that and they are a scam artist then you are basically SOL. Luckily I found out and was able to cancel the moneygram and I didn't lose a thing.


Things to watch out for are new users without any feedback. They usually are selling more than one expensive electronic item. They usually want the money wired, no paypal or other escrow services.


If you think it is fishy then don't even bother risking it.
 

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Not to be a D*ck, but dont you think a brand new G20 for 4k is a little suspiscious?


-maynard


[This message has been edited by Maynard (edited 09-19-2001).]
 

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Wow! That would have been the deal of the century if it went through!
 

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Bryan,


But I guess this means you DID make your decision that day, in the Faroudja booth! Even though that M15 was tired and droopy-looking, compared to onthers I've seen. Good luck on your quest; I may follow suit soon.


Best,


Pat
 

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I contacted that individual requesting details on the projector during the auction. I received a reply that the unit had already been sold, and I was referred to an importer where I could "get a good deal". Needless to say, I dropped the matter.


/jab


------------------

a moderator at the TiVo Community Forum
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Maynard,


As I indicated I was VERY suspicious, but everyone once in a while you do run across a phenomenal deal. Lastly when I initially bid in the auction I did not know it would end at 4K.


Bryan
 

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Bryan,


Don't forget to let e-bay know about this.

Though I've never used e-bay, it looks like they provide some way to give seller and buyer feedback.


------------------

Jim Gunther
 

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I have followed projector auctions for a long time and it is has been very apparent that projectors are one of the items of choice that scam artists are using. Projector buyers especially home theatre types are very susceptible to being scammed since many have attached an intense personal/ego element to their projector ownership and can let down and make a bad decision when seeing the previously unattainable, forbidden fruit projector of their dreams all of sudden affordable.


These cautions should be observed:


* Never buy a projector from someone without a very solid record of positive feedback unless you can use an escrow service. Most honest sellers with low feedback will allow escrow service.


*Do not buy a auction projector from any country but the one you live in.


*Always pay with a real credit card that is issued to you personally. Never use a debit card or any corporate credit card. You have the most protection with a credit card that is issued to you as a consumer. Banks expect businesses to be able to take care of themselves and offer less protection to corporate cardholders and ATM cards have very few rights plus that number given out to the wrong person can drain your bank account.


*Don't expect any protection from PayPal they care only for themselves and will not lift a finger to help you. Their investigations of complaints are limited to emailing the the fraudulent seller and if they get no response the investigation is over. They will also fight you tooth and nail if you initiate a chargeback and they are the merchant of record.


*Make sure you read the listing very carefully. Dishonest sellers will hide information in places where you might not read. For example in the specs-if you know the projector you might not read that part of listing and often dishonest sellers will hide info there. For example one dishonest seller hid in the specs next to the listing stating whisper quiet fan for an LP340 a statement that the seller could substitute a different projector-and he did. Others will list a projector as if it is new and bury in small print at the end that it is a refurb.


*If you are buying used make sure you ask the buyer relevant questions about hours on lamp, included accessories, and burnt or stuck on pixels. If listing doesn't state whether the projector is new or used make sure you get a statement in a return email regarding this from the seller. Many dishonest sellers will just paste the manufacturer's copy from their website. If it is used make sure you get a statement from the seller what condition it is in. If the seller does not answer your emails or replies but doesn't really answer your questions -don't bid.


*Lastly many sellers on Ebay claim the projector comes with a warranty, or is still under warranty. Unless the seller is a dealer or an authorized reseller they cannot offer a warranty. No private person is authorized to offer a warranty unless they are going to be responsible themselves for any repairs if needed. That is very unlikely. Just about every warranty states that it is valid to the original buyer only and that it is not transferable. In general warranties do not follow the projector after they leave the original owner. The LT150 is a case in point-many of the LT150 listings on Ebay were sold by the original owners who stated or inferred that there was a warranty. This is an example of a fraudulent seller. Buyers bought a new projector, saved about $300-400, and were the 2nd owner of a projector and did not have an enforceable warranty.


Lenny Eckian




[This message has been edited by leckian (edited 09-20-2001).]
 

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Out of curiousity I emailed this character and asked if he/she/it wanted to sell another one for the eBay amount. I received these payment instructions. This is the most convoluted bunch of nonsense I've ever seen.

__________________________________________________________


>> We would suggest you to transfer the money via

>> Western Union. That

>> means that we have been ripped several times when

>> we tried to

>> transact other ways. How would it work. First of

>> all you provide me

>> the shipping address, so that I would know where

>> we should ship the

>> item. Then you find a local WU office, where

>> you'll send the money

>> to the address i will mention if you agree. The WU

>> officer will give

>> you a 10 number mtcn (money transfer code number).

>> WE CAN NOT TAKE

>> THE MONEY UNTIL YOU SEND US THIS NUMBER. Then you

>> e-mail us, and we

>> check the if the transaction occurred. The next

>> business day we send

>> you the item via FedEx. The item will arrive in

>> 2-3 days to the

>> address you mention. If you like the item, you

>> send us the mtcn

>> code, otherwise you send the item back and

>> withdraw you money. btw,

>> you can withdraw you money anytime, if you think

>> this is not a

>> serious deal.

>>

>> The idea is that the trade officer of our company

>> is in Europe now.

>> He searches for different advertising companies

>> and local markets.

>> He is the one that always takes the money from the

>> bank or WU offices.

>> His host from Europe is the associate of us and

>> the money will be taken

>> by him for now. When you send the money to his

>> host he'll check

>> if the transaction has been completed there and

>> contact me to inform

>> either the money have arrived or not.

>> Why the host and not the Trade Officer directly?

>> Because the laws

>> in Europe differ from the laws we have here, and

>> foreign citizen's

>> can not withdraw the money from banks and other

>> offices.

>>

>> --

>> Best regards,

>> ann_boala




[This message has been edited by RobertWood (edited 09-21-2001).]
 

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I just sent a complaint to Yahoo about a new guy on there that just put up 25 projectors for sale. All different and all popular among the bidders. I told them that I will never bid or sell anything on their site because of the rampant abuse and the fact that they do not do a single thing to prevent or stop it. Wonder if they will respond.
 

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I agree with you Lynx, Yahoo admin are really doing nothing to help this. I've also bidden on Yahoo auction for an LT150, and the email was pretty similar than the one pasted above: We are a new company in europe (Italy in that case), we had problem with paypal, escrow, and we only accept wire transfer. And the usual "best regards". Obviously I never sent the money. For those that are saying low prices on auctions are always suspicious, I agree half the way: it is suspicious, but I made several deals on Ebay on pro-audio & synth equipment: to give you an example, I got some DSP boards with optical I/Os and an external DAC/ADC with 32 I/Os (analog balanced + optical) for about 70% of the price this stuff was sold in stores...
 

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You have to be very carefull with ebay on auctions, let me tell you my story, i had a trojan on my system and the hacker got my hotmail and ebay passwords, which he proceeded to change, i found out the next day and checked under my ebay name, and lo and behold he was using my good username at ebay and was selling about 15 high priced electronic items, he changed the location from winnipeg,canada to san fran,ca, la,ca on the items, i then emailed ebay that he was a fraud, after i cancelled my credit cards, no use Ebay doesn't care, no reply back after 5 emails over 2 days to different deopartments. I then created different ebay accounts to try and win all the auctions by bidding high, after i won the first 2, he then started ended auctions early and cancelling all bids by new users. So then i proceeded to email everyone who bid on his auctions, around 100 people saying it was fraud, i don't think to many believed me. I then found out about ebay forums, which were a big help. He then started another 20 auctions and i started posting in the fraud forum on what happened and for the phone number of ebay, of course someone replied and there reply was edited by ebay after 1/2 hour and a message was posted about don't post ebay phone numbers, of course the ebay person said nothing of my concern, after about 5 phone calls, i gave up no returns, i then had to email another 200 people that these were fraud auctions, and then i started emailing previous buyers and sellers, that gave me feedback, telling them to come to the message board and say what my real name was and where i lived. I was posting to the board saying, before i was onlyuy selling stamps and license plates and now all of a sudden i was dealing with high priced new electronics, I also found out that the hacker didn't control the ftp account where i had my previous auctions pictures stored on. So i changed old auctions that still had a direct link to my real items i used to sell, and changed the picture to a note saying that this person was impostering me and these new auctions were fraud, finally after about a week someone at ebay saw my posts on the board and alerted the right personn at ebayn and they actually phoned me, and fixed everything within 10 minutes, i later found out he had multiple ebay acounts he was using from other members with numerous paypal accounts, which i alerted paypoal and they did a search on his name and froze all his accounts, so haha he ended up losing, no one who won any auction from me got ripped off, one person sent money to paypal which was frozen, then he got it back, so be careful out there
 

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Glad everything worked out for you theprophe.


Sometimes I wonder if Ebay and Yahoo are both run by high schoolers in their basement. The only times I've seen help from fraud on those two sites was from other bidders. Not from the companies. I remember about 3 years ago when Ebay was fairly new and I sold some big ticket items for $2k and there was never any problems or doubt. I didn't even have feedback and had personal checks sent to me. I bought items and sent money orders and didn't give it a second thought. I made a profit and got stuff for well under retail. Now it is hard to find a good deal on most electronic items and the risk for fraud has skyrocketed. It's a sad sad world.
 

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LynxFX

There is a lot of fraud on Yahoo and ebay but the good deals are still there if you look and you are patient. The overwhelming percentage of transactions are from good sellers. If you follow the precautions I listed you will reduce the chances of getting burnt by a huge margin. Never wire anyone on Ebay money-even if they have a good rating. The unbelievable deals from sellers who have little or no feedback, who want you to wire them money are almost always going to be a scam.

Lenny Eckian


[This message has been edited by leckian (edited 09-23-2001).]
 

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The funniest thing about the ann_boala one is that she uses the same letter to send to everyone! That one that RobertWood posted is the exact same one I received. I have a lot of evidence though against her including a description of the guy that I was "supposed" to send the money to. I just wonder though who I can turn this information over to? I don't think there is anyone..


Chrs
 
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