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View Full Version : Possible E-Bay Scam and Fraud Alert



tateuts
02-05-2004, 05:50 PM
I bid on a Josswest cue and don't get the item. So I am contacted ny another E-Bay member (with good, but a small amount of feedback) offering me a JW at a decent price. I respond that I might be interested. I would like their name, location, and photos of the cue.

Instead I get a written description, no name, no photos. And to be safe, the persons says we can use "Federal Escrow Service".

So, I e-mail back saying, no. I want photos and their name, and I will only use Proficient Billiards escrow service, because I trust that if anyone knows a good cue when he sees it, it's Scot.

I get back an e-mail saying "No I will only use Federal Escrow - the deal's off".

Well, to make a long story short, I have reason to believe (But I might be wrong) that the escrow service at the web address he gave, is a phony baloney. Federal Excrow is out here and they are real, but it is at a different web address! I've e-mailed the escrow service and am waiting for a response. They are supposed to be in Ohio. The "real" Federal Escrow is out here, and they know nothing of this other outfit. i've reported this to E-Bay.

This is a great reason not to buy outside of E-Bay's system, and to insist on a known escrow service.

Chris

bigshooter
02-05-2004, 06:05 PM
Thanks for the alert!
Back when I first started on ebay I got similar offer and sent a money order for a Phillippi and never did get it.
Learned an expensive lesson.

Harold Acosta
02-05-2004, 06:13 PM
Report your problems to Ebay immediately. Do so with Pay Pal if you made payment through them. Request info about the seller from Ebay. Follow Ebay and Pay Pals instructions. They are worth it. Then go to the Better Business Bureau through the web-site and report the MF.

I've had trouble twice but I got my money back.

tateuts
02-05-2004, 06:22 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Harold Acosta:</font><hr> Report your problems to Ebay immediately.

I've had trouble twice but I got my money back.

<hr /></blockquote>

Thanks Harold, I did report it to E-Bay. I've done a "whois" on the suspected fraudulent web site. This thing looks a professional as all get out but the domain name was only registered 10 days ago. I'm giving the web site a chance to respond to my fraud allegation, and if they don't in the next day or two then I will report them to the IFCC which also reports to the FBI.

Chris

tateuts
02-05-2004, 06:33 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote bigshooter:</font><hr> Thanks for the alert!
Back when I first started on ebay I got similar offer and sent a money order for a Phillippi and never did get it.
Learned an expensive lesson. <hr /></blockquote>

Oh man, that really sucks, Shooter. Over my dealings, I have found that the vast majority of people are honest. Some people are exceptionally honest. And of course, there is the occasional crook.

There are times and situations when we just have to trust people. I think it's better to lose a little money now and then than living life completely mistrusting of others like some people seem to do.

Plus, look at the positive side of things. You got something to bitch about for the rest of your life and it only cost you $1000!
/ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif
Chris

dooziexx
02-06-2004, 11:56 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote tateuts:</font><hr> I will only use Proficient Billiards escrow service, because I trust that if anyone knows a good cue when he sees it, it's Scot.
<hr /></blockquote>

Chris,
How much does Scot charge for the escrow service. I went to their site and theres no mention of it. I just recently got ripped off $1100...sucks big time!
Thanks.

tateuts
02-06-2004, 01:05 PM
Erik,

Very sorry to hear about the loss. I guess that sooner or later, it's bound to happen to all of us. I had a few surprisingly crappy cues come in but never a flat rip-off.

Scot's escrow service is listed under "repairs" - here's the link:

http://www.proficientbilliards.com/services/escrowservice.htm

It's $50 but he does a lot for the money - photo's, inspection, handles the funds, etc. He knows what he's doing so he can quote repair costs and spot problems.

Anyway, I was thinking - split the cost with the seller and buyer and it's only $25 each - what the heck? For peace of mind that's a small price to pay for both parties. Certainly not worth it on $200 cues but maybe $500 or more I would think...

If someone doesn't go along with that idea, then they probably are trying to hide something.

Chris

tateuts
02-06-2004, 01:11 PM
Also, it does look like the escrow service is a fraud and it's being run from a foreign country.

Chris

dooziexx
02-06-2004, 02:32 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote tateuts:</font><hr> It's $50 but he does a lot for the money - photo's, inspection, handles the funds, etc. He knows what he's doing so he can quote repair costs and spot problems.
<hr /></blockquote>

Chris,
I wish I would have known that Scot had an escrow service earlier and I would have used it. Oh well....
Erik

JohnBarton
02-06-2004, 04:09 PM
Feedback - feedback - feeback!!!

This is often your ONLY indicator of who you are dealing with. You can contact the other people who have bought and ask them. I have often been contacted by people who are buying something from someone I bought from.

No matter how you look at it it's a crapshoot. I probably wouldn't buy anything from someone who has very low or no feedback. At least not in any amount that I couldn't afford to write off.

I have sold many cues on Ebay and online and I am often amazed at the amount of money people will send on faith. Luckily, my feedback supports their decision. :-))

To those of you who have lost money I hope that you somehow recover it.

John

tateuts
02-06-2004, 04:27 PM
John,

Amazingly, the person who contacted me had a lot of positive feedback. I think this is "identity theft". I had heard there were e-bay user id's and passwords stolen. Then what happens is the crooks go in there and change the persons e-mail address to their own, and go about their dirty work.

These schemes are very elaborate.

Chris

John in NH
02-06-2004, 04:31 PM
Hi Chris,

Thanks for the info, I have done some business with EBAY and have been very happy with my transactions to date, I only buy from reputable dealers.

You can't be too careful when it comes to trading on EBAY, good luck with your future transactions.

John

tateuts
02-06-2004, 08:18 PM
OK - I just heard back from E-Bay. Here's how the scam works.

Someone probably e-mailed me with a question and I answered them at some point. Now they have my user-ID and my e-mail address. At some time in the future they dummy up an e-mail to make it look like it came through the E-Bay system, but it doesn't. They can pick any screen name they want. Naturally, when I look up their feedback, I can see they have good feedback, but I'm not talking to the people with the ID, I'm responding to the e-mail address.

My oh my, be careful out there folks! Don't buy outside of E-Bay!

Chris