I recently sold my first ever item on eBay. With new territory comes new wonders… including scams!
Within hours of my putting up my auction, someone, who created the account on that same day, buy its out. After buying it out he messages me via eBay asking me if “shipping is free” because he wants to “send the item to his daughter at college”. Even though I am new to selling on eBay I am not an idiot; the fact that the buyer had a brand new account, no feedback, asks me about free shipping even though the auction clearly states “free shipping”, and wants me to ship it to some third party location got me wondering “scam?” Well I immediately told the buyer that I would only ship to a confirmed PayPal address. After that I got this e-mail directly to my e-mail (note: not via eBay):
At first glance I thought this was a legit e-mail from PayPal so I thought “dang I misjudged the guy as a scammer for no reason”. …Then I read the “Money Paid Details” and I thought “what in the world?”
According to the e-mail I was being paid an extra $100 for shipping fees. Not only was this odd in of it self but what made it worse is that I had free shipping listed for my auction. After that fiasco I read the e-mail further and saw “Country: Nigeria” and that just yelled SCAM to me. To confirm my suspicions, I noticed the email was sent from @mail2pay.com not @paypal.com. At the end of the day I got saved… *Phew*.
Moral of the story: just because an e-mail looks legit does not mean it is! Always double and triple check (with multiple sources) before shipping out an item or sending money.
P.S. I did report this to eBay and the account did get banned for what it is worth =).