Gary D's Take

OK Hackers and Scammers…I Give Up!

OK Hackers and Scammers…I Give Up!

Aug 12, 2012

I recently posted about my annoying Twitter hack. It was just that…annoying….but no real damage done. Now I have experienced a whole new level of irritation…with E Bay.

I have been buying and selling on E Bay for years. I have not only bought and sold the requisite tech stuff but I have even bought and sold cars and boats.

I bought my 23 foot Regal cruiser on E Bay five years ago from a dealer in Coral Gables, Florida. My family and friends have had many great outings and lots of fun on her. Eventually , the second happiest day in a boat owners life comes…the day you sell it! I pulled her out of the slip on Smith Lake more than a year ago thinking I might move the boat to Guntersville or maybe even back to Florida. Time and circumstance have conspired to cause it to sit right here and eventually I decided to sell it.  Since I bought it on E Bay , it made sense to sell her that way…right?

The first auction went to a guy in Tennessee who had to back out. OK…….stuff happens. The next go-round didn’t get the price I wanted…OK. On my third attempt I made the acquaintance of a lovely  gentleman who claimed to be working on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. All I had to do , according to the fake email from PayPal that I got, to get the money that HAD NOT been deposited in my account was to send $1500 via Western Union to some bogus shipping company in Kuala Lampur and they would release the funds that weren’t actually in my account. I went through all the necessary fraud reporting procedures with E Bay and Pay Pal and relisted. Things were going well and the boat sold for what I wanted.

The buyer appeared to be a guy from a small town in Georgia near a couple of lakes…made sense. My first communication with my new buyer yielded a surly response demanding things that I was unable and not obligated to do like “test drives” and forgoing the deposit.

My business like response about terms and such stuff netted this reply-

“Sir,
Tnis is not the end of this situation. Crooks like u need to be brought to justice. I’m a police cnief and nave contacted the proper ajthorities.”

Obviously this is the work of a nine year old or another semi-literate hacker in some third world country working off a cell phone. I’m guessing the nine year old.

The net result is I have wasted two weeks, been irritated beyond belief and I have not sold the boat. Am I mad at E Bay? Maybe they could do more to keep out the scammers like my faux cruise ship guy…I don’t know what that would be. Maybe they could do more to keep nine year olds off??? Once again I am not sure how you filter out a determined internet savvy pre-teen with a smart phone.

Some people are hesitant to buy from E Bay because they are afraid of being taken advantage of. I personally have had thousands of transactions over the years and I honestly don’t remember having a bad experience as a buyer or as a seller….till now! I guess the old caveat “Let the buyer beware” gets reversed on E Bay…..”Let the SELLER beware!”

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