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This guide will help all ebay sellers to protect themselves from fraudulant buyers who are putting us £££'s out of pocket.

I, like 1,000's of other ebay sellers, have fallen victim to fraudulant buyers reversing payments and the like... after having posted their item and it being signed for by the buyer (Who then claims it wasnt them!).  Paypal does NOTHING to help us, the people who keep ebay / paypal running, instead looking out only for NUMBER ONE, Themselves.
It seems there's people out there making a living off of us decent people, robbing us of our items and money, which is effectively e-Theft.
Paypal prides themselves on being the SAFEST method of online payment there is.... but it most certainly IS NOT.  Paypal has the power to TAKE AWAY your money without giving you a seconds thought, JUST BECAUSE THE FRAUDULANT BUYER wants their money back. So.....Avoid paypal where you believe there is a risk. Request cheque / postal order if a buyer is serious about buying but doesnt meet your criteria.

So don't let Paypal, and the fraudulant buyers get the upper hand here.... Follow my guidelines and you can't go far wrong.

There's two choices... Boycott paypal altogether (seriously hurting your sales figures) or.... be extremely vigilant with new and overseas buyers.

Following my guidelines should help deter / stop 99% of the bad ones. 


And remember, if an ebayer sends you a payment and they dont meet your criteria.... REFUND their payment and explain why. You have EVERY right to protect yourself. 


Offer to accept paypal payment only from buyers with feedback over 95%, or more than 20 Positive feedback
At this point, check their feedback for the tell tale signs of them being a dodgy bleeder, what items have they bought previously. Many fraudulant buyers buy 1p E-Books as a method of getting their feedback upto / over the minimum amount you require. These buyers should NOT be trusted. If you wish to be even more vigilant, change the Postive % to a higher amount, or find out the nature of their negative feedback before accepting a payment.

Accept CHEQUE / POSTAL ORDER / BANK BALANCE TRANSFER only from buyers with under 10 feedback or under 95% Positive feedback.
If a buyer refuses to pay for your item via one of these methods, then tough luck for themselves. Perhaps offer the buyer a small discount (since Paypal takes a cut from any transaction anyway) as a way of showing you do want their business but not at your own risk. If any genuine buyer truly desires positive feedback and the item in question, then they should have no quarrels in paying for your item via one of these payment methods. If your feedback is excellent they should have NO reason not to trust you, and should also understand your reasons for being so cautious.

For High Value Orders, ALWAYS check that the buyers address is PAYPAL CONFIRMED, and also that their ebay name / address matches that of their Paypal Payment details.
If the addresses dont match up, question the buyer. Explain why you're asking the questions. If they dont respond, refund their money. Dont let down your guard no matter how genuine a sale may look. A hi-jacked ebay account can be extremely dangerous. I myself have been victim to this twice, both times leaving me over £100 out of pocket. This only takes a couple seconds to check and could save you £100s.

Communicate with your buyers. If you have the slightest inkling that something may be wrong, dont dispatch the item and contact your buyer before doing anything.
Explain to your buyer why you are contacting them first of all. An explanation from your buyer is all that's needed for whatever problem you may of had needed to clear up. If no response, simply refund the payment, create a Non-Payment dispute for the item in question, stating you disagreed over terms, and claim back your Final Value Fee.  Much rather doing this than possibly shipping an item to a buyer who will take back ALL your money at a later date.

Show that you mean business... LEAVE NEGATIVE feedback for EVERY Buyer who is a risk to others.
Any buyer with a huge NEGATIVE feedback score and a comment typed in capitals saying the buyer is FRAUDULANT is unlikely to get very far using that account. Make sure your listing states that any dodgy buyer runs the risk of immediate NEGATIVE feedback and being reported to ebay. Do NOT worry about receiving negative feedback on your own account. The majority of cases end where ebay removes Negative feedback left by fraudulant buyers. At the end of the day, YOU are protecting the ebay community by Naming and Shaming them on their own feedback page.


Always ensure any overseas buyers address is paypal verified, and that their positive feedback and % is exceptional. Especially if selling expensive items. If you dont trust your gut instinct, DONT POST THE ITEM. Instead contact your buyer and ask whatever questions you feel appropriate to ask. If they don't like your probing behaviour, send them back their money. Always post items using  INTERNATIONAL SIGNED FOR, and ensure you charge accordingly for this in your listings. Make your overseas buying requirements very visible in your listings also...

If you check any of my listings you will find a chart which I give you permission to COPY & PASTE on to your own listings and edit accordingly. It's pretty straightforward to understand and will ensure your buyers understand your sales terms and pay accordingly.

I hope this has somewhat helped any ebay sellers who feel they've been wrongly treated with regards to paypal payment reversals etc etc..... Paypal and ebay DO NOT CARE about the people who have helped make it what it is today. So wherever necessary, do whatever you can to avoid money getting into paypal / ebay's hands and protect your own interests.

If you have found this guide helpful dont forget to VOTE YES at the bottom of this guide. Any ebayers with questions please contact me...

Thanks for reading.

Carl Davies
GeForce Express

Guide ID: 10000000005700750Guide created: 17/02/08 (updated 08/09/13)

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