Warning: scam on Tibor Gulfstream - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 02:27 AM Thread Starter
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Warning: scam on Tibor Gulfstream

[moderators: if this post violates forum rules, I apologize and please feel free to remove it.]

Hi guys,

I have a public service announcement: a Tibor Gulfstream was just listed on Ebay with a Buy It Now price of $235.97 by a new seller with a 0 feedback rating and I'm certain that this is the same person who has been operating a scam of similar auctions in the past. Forum rules prohibit linking to auctions, but the item number is 270899909519. Do not buy it!!!

Someone or multiple people are creating new Ebay accounts, listing high-end reels or rods in new condition with Buy It Now prices well below the MSRP, and using stock photos or photos taken from another Ebay seller's auction as well as stock descriptions. They're getting around Ebay's very solid Buyer Protection policies by somehow creating fake USPS tracking numbers which show the item to be delivered to your doorstep even when it was never shipped.

These scam auctions to look out for all have the following traits:
-Rod or reel retailing for $500-$700, listed for an amount between $200-$250
-Item location listed as somewhere near West Covina, CA (also City of Industry)
-Seller with 0 feedback and new account (you can tell by clicking on the seller profile)
-stock description with no additional text added

I know all this because I fell for the bait last year. I bought a Nautilus NV 11/12 last April for a BIN price of $249.75, paid, never received the item, entered into a lengthy Ebay and Paypal conflict resolution process, and ultimately was told I couldn't do anything about it either through Ebay or Paypal because the tracking information showed that the item was shipped. Even though the seller had 0 feedback, I figured I was safe to jump on it because of Ebay's Buyer Protection policy. I was wrong. Don't be stupid like me and take a chance on a new seller, relying on Ebay to protect you in case of fraud.

I've reported these items to Ebay every time I've seen them, but I don't know if the word is getting through. I remember seeing an Orvis Helios listed with all of these warning signs for just under $250.00 several months back; it was snapped up within the hour, and I hope nobody on this board fell victim.

Please distribute this message to other popular fly fishing classifieds boards if you can. I know it's only a couple hundred bucks, and the odds are slim that whoever ends up buying that Gulfstream would read this in time, but I spent a couple of very frustrating months trying to get my money back and so I feel it's my duty to try to prevent this from happening to someone else.

Thanks,
Matt
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 06:06 AM
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Matt,
Thanks for the good advice and warning. It is amazing how people will put in so much time and effort to be dishonest.
Doug
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 06:38 AM
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I can also vouch for eBay's crappy "protection policy"; I've lost several hundred dollars dealing with them.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 08:27 AM
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I got burned this year on a reel,even though it was kijiji I thought I was safe as I talked to the seller on the pnone several times,he knew I was on a disability pension,sent me pics of a Salmon#1 Saltwater edition sent the money order,received a reel 2 weeks later ,not the reel in the pics and not even fishable in the condition it arrived in,my loss
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 08:47 AM
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This stinks. I've made about 20 ebay purchases over the past 3-4 years. All have been good to excellent. One event of losing hundreds of dollars would probably sour me off the site. Good job alerting folks of the scam.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 08:55 AM
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Thanks, Matt

Matt-Thanks for the heads up on this. Although I don't buy much on e-bay, these scams can be almost anywhere. The signs that you've suggested we look out for are excellent "red flags" and, if looked for and identified, could save someone some hard earned cash as well as a lot of headache and loss of faith in one's fellow man in general.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 10:10 AM
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Under $250

I think items over $250 need proof of delivery (signature by the buyer) in order to protect the seller from a chargeback. Items under that amount, the proof of delivery is not required. I wonder if requesting proof of delivery from the seller (via an EBay message) for an item under the $250 would protect you the buyer and allow a chargeback.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 10:29 AM
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5 Star thread.

No only here, but similar posting(s) on a couple of UK based boards. All goes back to the old saying: "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn't." Or to put it another way: "There is no such thing as a free lunch."

fae




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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 11:01 AM
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Exclamation Buying on-line at eBay

Pay with PayPal using a credit card as the funding source. If the eBay/PayPal system does not solve a dispute/claim in your favor, you have your own credit card protections to fall back on for help.

Insist on signature delivery confirmation for high dollar items. Priority/insured or certified/ insured mail should get that done. It is hard to fake a UPS or FedEx itinerary or USPS itinerary for that matter.

I'm not sure how in the scam where fake USPS numbers are generated how the perpetrators generate the correct itinerary for that package. The USPS has an internal itinerary like you see for UPS and FedEx on packages that have delivery confirmation (that is to say: a package that would have a number associated with the package that would be proof to the eBay/PayPal systems that the item was delivered can be tracked by your local postmaster in the USPS system). It is on the post office computer system. You can't fake that from outside. You would need commission of a federal crime internally at the postal system to fake proof of delivery supported by a correct itinerary. And the lack of that in formation in the USPS computer system with a statement from your local Post Master should prove that you never received delivery.

eBay and PayPal protections have gotten poorer and favor the seller in a dispute. eBay does not consider the crime of omission of information a legitimate complaint against a Seller. The Buyer can prevail that situation, but you must be prepared to take them kicking and screaming to the conclusion to refund your money and undo the deal. Your credit card company
is much less tolerant of such shenanigans.

Sellers claim to "not be experts" and say, "so ask questions and look closely at the pictures" especially when they know they are selling something that is damaged goods. BEWARE THESE CLUES. Also, the word "Mint" is a red flag as are "wonderful", "marvelous", and "excellent" when associated with a condition of "used" and "As is no returns" or "No Returns". Good people stand behind the things they sell, bad people don't stand behind anything.

Or you can resort to this: "Are there any: cracks, chips, crushed areas, guides missing, scrapes, scratches cuts, non matching wraps, reel seat damage, cork damage, are the ferrules tight on the rod sections, is then ferrule fit tight, are the two rod sections the same length, has anything been added to the rod, is there anything else I should know about this rod before bidding that might discourage me from owning this rod?" (reel, jacket or whatever) To which you will probably receive the "I am not an expert." defense.

Do not pay with MO or Bank checks. Pay with PayPal or a credit card and preferably with PayPal using a credit card as the funding source.. Once the cash instrument is gone into the mail you have no control of the money. Even if you can prove the person got the money what do you do when they have sold you the junk you get delivered and they refuse to take it back?

Personal checks allow some control but you will need to start proceedings against the check if the seller stops communicating especially no tracking numbers and or the package doesn't make it to you in a reasonably short time. Stop payment will cost you $25 + and you might need to do that not knowing for sure if there is really a problem, but if you wait until you are certain it will be too late to recover.

Better off using PayPal with a credit card as the funding source. There is much more leeway to allow things to work out while still being able to recover if they don't.

IMPORTANT! If you have not received your item or if you have not had your claim settled by the time the credit card bill that contains the charge for the disputed item is due....then dispute the charge with the credit card company.

Document everything from the moment you think there might be a problem, and get copies of all emails you send to eBay, PayPal or the seller. In the eBay system email you send can be copied to your email address by checking the little box near where the anti-computer-bot number trap appears.

Sellers like buyers have to start somewhere. Just because the person hasn't had a pile of sales doesn't on the face of it mean that they are no good. If you are protected as I've suggested, you will probably get a heck of a deal that others are afraid of.

How to keep PayPal out of the bank account? ......that needs to be a PM.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the comments and kudos, everyone. Ansas' post is full of great advice, especially the point about paying through Paypal using a credit card as a funding source. It gives you one more layer of protection through the card's own protection system. Unfortunately in my case, the chargeback I placed on my card ultimately deferred to Paypal's findings in the conflict, and Paypal of course had the item shown as shipped and delivered.

I was completely baffled by the false USPS tracking number as well, since I called both Ebay and USPS and neither person I spoke with had ever heard of this kind of fraud. I agree that it would require someone within the inside (or at least a skilled hacker) to pull this kind of scam off, and if someone was going to that length to make a couple hundred bucks, why not do it for much larger ticket items like jewelry and electronics? Perhaps they are, I don't know.

And formrbankr, I'd never heard of that $250 threshold for proof of delivery to protect sellers before. That's a very good point, and I think you've found the reason why each of these suspect auctions are listed for just under $250.

Between here, the WFF Classifieds board, and Kiene's board in California, it looks like this message received about 500 views so I'm glad that the word got out and nobody got hit this time around (looks like the item in question has since been taken off the auction). It's communities like these that depend on honesty and trust to make private transactions work, and I'm thankful that all of my gear bought and sold on forums have been stellar experiences with upstanding folks (so have all but one of my hundreds of transactions on the big auction site too, so I certainly don't mean to make this an attack on online auctions).

Anyway, back to your regularly scheduled programming! I just realized that the OP was only my second recorded post here, so I feel compelled to explain myself: one of the forum rules stuck to the top advises to remove Classifieds posts after sale, and I only post in this forum because I'm not a spey fisherman. Yet.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 03:56 PM
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Oh Sooo Yes!

"Pay with PayPal using a credit card as the funding source. If the eBay/PayPal system does not solve a dispute/claim in your favor, you have your own credit card protections to fall back on for help."

Only 'once' did (and it's still an issue) with buying something on line (major company/anti-virus program) and Nada. Program easily down loaded .. the activation code?

Insert a series of 'four letter words.' And I wanted the damned thing!!!

But the point is DON'T EXPECT PayPal to give you an ounce of help as things get interesting. Your Credit Card Company has other ideas; and They listen up.

Fred




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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 05:46 PM
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Fleabay...

Fleabay isn't worth it. One bad deal and you've blown your meager savings over buying used on a forum like this.

I've honestly found better prices on the forum anyhow.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 06:02 PM
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RUDE! that is my reel I am trying to sell


LOL just messing around! I never have bought something of ebay and never will... I just buy things off of the adds here or from sponsers and local fly shops. Im to low tech to get into a problem with payment online. Plus I dont have pay pall or even know what it is
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-25-2012, 11:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JesseCFowl View Post
Fleabay isn't worth it. One bad deal and you've blown your meager savings over buying used on a forum like this.

I've honestly found better prices on the forum anyhow.
+1 Jesse. Over the past many years I've purchased (an on one occasion sold) equipment from fellow Board Members. Some of it pretty pricey stuff ..... not a whiff of a problem.




Fred Evans - White City, Oregon
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 12:14 AM
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getting burned on Ebay

Yes I have been burned a few times on Ebay, and the best policy is to look at the seller's feedback, but I have also been burned by seller's with 99% feedback, so online buying is buyer beware. The other thing to watch for is over zealous charges for shipping there, some will sell it cheap but make up the cost in the shipping cost.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattfishy View Post
[moderators: if this post violates forum rules, I apologize and please feel free to remove it.]

Hi guys,

I have a public service announcement: a Tibor Gulfstream was just listed on Ebay with a Buy It Now price of $235.97 by a new seller with a 0 feedback rating and I'm certain that this is the same person who has been operating a scam of similar auctions in the past. Forum rules prohibit linking to auctions, but the item number is 270899909519. Do not buy it!!!

Someone or multiple people are creating new Ebay accounts, listing high-end reels or rods in new condition with Buy It Now prices well below the MSRP, and using stock photos or photos taken from another Ebay seller's auction as well as stock descriptions. They're getting around Ebay's very solid Buyer Protection policies by somehow creating fake USPS tracking numbers which show the item to be delivered to your doorstep even when it was never shipped.

These scam auctions to look out for all have the following traits:
-Rod or reel retailing for $500-$700, listed for an amount between $200-$250
-Item location listed as somewhere near West Covina, CA (also City of Industry)
-Seller with 0 feedback and new account (you can tell by clicking on the seller profile)
-stock description with no additional text added

I know all this because I fell for the bait last year. I bought a Nautilus NV 11/12 last April for a BIN price of $249.75, paid, never received the item, entered into a lengthy Ebay and Paypal conflict resolution process, and ultimately was told I couldn't do anything about it either through Ebay or Paypal because the tracking information showed that the item was shipped. Even though the seller had 0 feedback, I figured I was safe to jump on it because of Ebay's Buyer Protection policy. I was wrong. Don't be stupid like me and take a chance on a new seller, relying on Ebay to protect you in case of fraud.

I've reported these items to Ebay every time I've seen them, but I don't know if the word is getting through. I remember seeing an Orvis Helios listed with all of these warning signs for just under $250.00 several months back; it was snapped up within the hour, and I hope nobody on this board fell victim.

Please distribute this message to other popular fly fishing classifieds boards if you can. I know it's only a couple hundred bucks, and the odds are slim that whoever ends up buying that Gulfstream would read this in time, but I spent a couple of very frustrating months trying to get my money back and so I feel it's my duty to try to prevent this from happening to someone else.

Thanks,
Matt

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