Most common scams on eBay and how to avoid them

Scams on eBay are very common: here are the most frequent ones and how to recognize and avoid them

Buyers and sellers can take advantage of eBay and all the tools of one of the most famous and used marketplaces in the world to, respectively, buy and sell products. The store is a real point of reference in the e-commerce sector.

Unfortunately, however, scams on eBay are very common , both among sellers and buyers. Some are particularly widespread and it is easy, for those who often use the marketplace, to come across an attempted scam that follows a “classic” scheme.

It is possible to come across many scams online, such as scams involving Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, or attempts to resell a stolen iPhone . Many of these scams exploit marketplaces like eBay and can cause significant financial harm to honest buyers and sellers.

So let’s see what the most common scams on eBay are and how to avoid them.

The seller does not ship the item

It may happen that you purchase a product on eBay from a seller and not receive the item . Very often, in fact, scammers start selling on eBay, accumulating positive feedback with products of little value and then starting to deceive users with scams such as the failure to send the item.

To defend yourself, it is always best to purchase products accompanied by the eBay Premium Service badge (which certifies the seller as reliable) and eBay Customer Guarantee (which guarantees a refund if you do not receive the product).

The name change scam

Some sellers use a sneaky technique to scam users on eBay. They sell a product and actually ship it to the buyer’s address. Only when preparing the package they delete the name .

In this way, when the package arrives at the buyer’s home, he may think that there has been an error and that the shipment is not for him. If you refuse the package,  the courier will mark it as “returned”. A small wording that voids the eBay guarantee.

To avoid falling into a trap, we can use an app to track the package via the order number . If we notice that delivery is scheduled for the same day, it is likely that our product is the one without a name. The alternative is to take the package and open it . And like good people, return it if it wasn’t ours.

The empty box

Enter eBay and notice the latest Samsung smartphone with a really interesting discount. You buy the device on the fly but when the package arrives at your home the surprise is big: the box is empty . This is one of eBay’s classic scams .

At this point you may be thinking: just make a complaint and we will surely get a refund. Wrong. It is possible that somewhere the seller inserted a small sentence that said: only the box included .

On the surface it may not mean anything, and why should one pay hundreds of euros for a box? Simple, because it’s a scam. To avoid falling into a trap, we never buy items with excessively advantageous discounts that don’t seem possible. And above all, we carefully read the product description .

Seller scams

Contrary to what one might think, the real category most affected on eBay are sellers and not buyers. This is because the platform protects those who buy much more than those who sell.

One of the classic scams for those who auction an object is to receive a message from a buyer who offers to complete the purchase outside of Bay , using another channel.

This is a situation to be absolutely avoided: the honest seller will lose all the protections guaranteed by eBay in this way. The advice is to never close sales outside of eBay and above all to communicate with the buyer only through the site’s channels.

Those who sell on eBay can count on many protection tools made available by the marketplace. You should always rely on these tools to be able to get all the necessary support in case dishonest buyers attempt a scam.

eBay sellers can get assistance by visiting the Help & Contact > Selling section of the official eBay website . Here is all the useful information to start selling in the right way on the marketplace, respecting the rules and protecting yourself from possible scams.

Theft of the object

The empty box scam can also work the other way around. The buyer receives the product, keeps the item, and sends the empty box back to eBay with a complaint. If we do not have actual proof of our shipment, the site will agree with the scammer. So how can you defend yourself? We always take photos of the package during shipping.

Obviously also inside to show the product. The speech can work even with a defective object. Once you receive the product, you keep the working one and file a complaint with eBay proving that the phone does not work. How to defend yourself in this case? Simple, we record the serial number and IMEI code. This way it will be impossible to be scammed

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