eBay Seller Scams

ebay seller scams

eBay Seller Scams: How They Work

If you are an avid user of this platform, you could be a victim of many eBay seller scams happening on the website. eBay fraud it’s been prevalent in the last few years, so it’s imperative to protect yourself from tricky maneuvers. In this article, we will take a look at how they work and how to report them.

We’ve exposed in the past several eBay buyer scams. Today it’s time to reverse the perspective and look at some eBay seller scams. More specifically, we will look at the cases when you could become a victim when you intend to sell your items (when the seller is the scammer). Let’s take a look.

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Watch the video below to see the Top 5 eBay scams, or keep reading for much more information:

1. Buyer Offers To Overpay the eBay Seller

This scam is widespread, and people should know that nobody will pay more than he/she is asked for. So, if a buyer wants to spend more money than your item costs, you need to know that it is a scam.

What you will get for your item is an empty cashier’s check that you can not use. As the product is already sent, you will stay without both the money and the product. We know that if someone offers you extra money, it is difficult not to accept the offer but we suggest you do so.

How to Avoid It:

To avoid being scammed, you should not send your products until you get the money. Our advice is not to accept checks of any kind on eBay.

2. Buyer Invites the eBay Seller To Settle Outside The Platform

This is one of the most common eBay seller scams. You can quickly become a victim of this scam if you accept a buyer’s offers to pay outside of eBay. At the very beginning, everything will seem fair. However, a buyer may then complain to eBay that the item you sold was malfunctioning or fake or did not exist.

If you try to argue about it on eBay, you cannot expect any help from them, as they are not in charge of anything happening outside of eBay.

You can receive help and protection from eBay only if you communicated and made transactions with your buyer through eBay’s platform. This type of fraud happens mostly when the crook is trying to pull an eBay Motors scam (when the item is expensive, so they try to “avoid the high commission”) or one of those very prevalent eBay car scams.

ebay seller scam

How to Avoid It:

If you wish to avoid this eBay seller scam, you should never accept the offer to make transactions outside of the eBay platform. The whole communication with buyers has to be done through eBay’s channels because, if you report an eBay seller scam, eBay will have the opportunity to verify the buyer’s messages and take actions if it proves to be true.

On the same token, you should also beware of the eBay Vehicle Purchase Protection scam and the plethora of eBay gift card scams.

3. Buyer Claims You Shipped An Empty Box

People who sell things on eBay have encountered various types of scams. This upcoming one is fascinating yet challenging to fight against. You negotiate the price with the buyer. He/she buys your product, which you send to him/her.

Upon receiving the item, the buyer starts an eBay dispute in which he/she claims that only an empty box has been sent. When eBay asks for a return, the empty package is returned, and the buyer retains the product.

How to Avoid It:

When this already happens, it isn’t easy to make things right. So, you must think in advance and check the buyer’s feedback history before sending the item to find something that may indicate potential trouble with that person.

The only way to protect yourself from this kind of eBay seller scams is to provide evidence. If you do not possess proof, eBay will stand by the buyer’s side. What you should do is to photograph the entire procedure of packing and shipping the items you sell through eBay.

One other notorious scheme is the fake eBay email.

4. Buyer Threatens Refund With Broken Replica

This kind of eBay seller scam happens to people who sell an already used item, which is very popular and attractive to buyers. You agree on the price, and the buyer buys it, but you do not know that he/she already possesses the same item, which is either in need of repair or not functioning at all.

Once he/she receives the item, he/she submits a complaint to eBay that the item is broken, and they return the damaged replica. You need to prove that the product you have sent was in working condition if you want to keep it. Otherwise, scammers get their money back and leave you without your product.

How to Avoid It:

The best way to make yourself protected from this eBay seller scam is to create a video to show that the item was working before you send it. You can also take photos of its serial number, IME number, etc., which can be compared with a returned replica.


eBay Seller Scam: How To Report

Let your friends know about these eBay seller scams by sharing this article on social media. You can officially report scammers and any other suspicious activities to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) using the link below:

Report To The FTC Here

How To Protect Yourself More

If you want to be the first to receive the newest scams every week, subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here. You’ll receive weekly emails – we promise not to spam.

Feel free to educate yourself with some other eBay fraud-related articles listed right under this paragraph, so that you know how to stay safe online. Use the Comments section below to expose other eBay scammers.

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selma hrynchuk
Selma HrynchukSelma is a fraud prevention specialist renowned for her expertise in private eye investigations and a remarkable partnership with law enforcement agencies. Beyond her investigative triumphs, her public speaking engagements and written works have empowered countless individuals to protect themselves and stay ahead of deceptive schemes. Selma's legacy shines as a tenacious agent of change, unyielding in her commitment to battling fraud and ensuring a safer world for all.

2 thoughts on “eBay Seller Scams”

  1. lately ive been winning auctions listed as free shipping. then the invoice will list shipping charges , i complain to ebay but they do nothing its easy to see the original posting is still there.

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