Help - E-Bay moral dilemma

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Ebay, Auctions, Car Boot & Jumble Sales
16 replies 632 views
SophSoph Forumite
74 Posts
I've posted this on the home, work & play board, under the section 'is this fair' and someone has recommended that I post it here as well for all you eBay experts out there.

I'd be very grateful for your comments/suggestions as to how to deal with this (hope I've explained it ok):

Quite a few months ago my sister was shopping in Monsoon's 70% off wedding dress sale and saw a dress she liked so much, reduced from £200 down to £60, that she bought it for me (getting married soon) - as you do! Anyway, I wasn't keen on the dress and so we decided that it would be best to try and sell it on eBay so at least she didn't lose any money on it.

Anyway, the bidder who won the item bid £100 (plus £20 P&P) and then sent my sister an e-mail saying that she is an 'agent' and she had bid for the dress on behalf of a client and her client would shortly be sending my sister a cheque for the cost of the dress direct. However, this cheque would include some 'commission', and she hoped that my sister would be trustworthy enough to return this commission to her via cheque. (Also, in the meantime, this 'agent' doesn't appear to be a registered eBay user any longer!?)

Sounded a bit wierd, but my sister decided to wait and see. The cheque arrived on my sister's doormat this morning, from the bidder's 'client' for the grand sum of £900!!

It would appear from this, that this 'agent' is conning some poor person out of a huge £780 'commission' for a dress that is only worth £200 at most!!

My sister and I are at a bit of a loss as to what to do - we don't feel right about simply accepting the cheque and returning £780 back to this 'agent', but we also don't know what is legally right to do in a situation like this. I've tried looking at the eBay help pages, but can't find anything that seems to match our situation.

Help please!!
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Replies

  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    Um, please tell me I'm wrong but does anyone else think this sounds exactly like the 419 advance payment scam?

    Just a question, is there any hint that this client needs the balance and the dress urgently?

    Please please please do a Google search for advance fee scam, or 419 scam before you do anything here. It is very likely you will bank the cheque and see cleared funds, despatch the dress and balance and then have the cheque bounce on you.

    Soo
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
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  • nikongirlnikongirl Forumite
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    I suggest you read about The Overpayment Scam and proceed with extreme caution (ie. don't bank it and don't send the item).

    Hopefully someone else will be able to give more specific advice.

    Hope this helps
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    I did wonder if I was over reacting..but the more i think about this the more I am 100% certain it is a scam.

    Here is an explanation of how it works:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advance_fee_fraud

    But as they are finding it more and more difficult to get victims as everyone knows about this now they are having to vary the scam a bit
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
    New to Forum? Guide
  • Soph it is a S C A M
    "Success is not to be measured by the position someone has reached in life, but the obstacles he has overcome while trying to succeed." Booker T. Washington

    The Official "Why does everyone have 'Official member of....club'?" which tend to be stupid/irrelevant Society. Member No 1 (I am aware of the irony btw)
  • pennylane99pennylane99 Forumite
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    this type of overpayment thing has been going for a while...its a scam.....dont do it....
  • SophSoph Forumite
    74 Posts
    Thanks so much to you all for replying so quickly and for your very helpful suggestions.
    I've left a message on my sister's voicemail to tell her about this and not to do a thing until she's read this thread.
    Does anyone know if we should be doing anything about this. Ie. reporting it to eBay (but then the buyer doesn't appear to be a regiestered user any more).
    Is it just as simply as my sister ripping up or returning the cheque and then re-listing the dress? She isn't going to break any seller rules by doing this is she?
    Sorry about all the questions, but a bit of an e-bay novice myself!!
    Do you think we should e-mail the buyer to explain why we're not prepared to go ahead with what they're proposing?
  • BenjiBenji Forumite
    640 Posts
    Would have thought the local Constabulary would be interested.
    Life should be a little nuts; otherwise it's just a bunch of Thursdays strung together.
  • zorberzorber Forumite
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    Its A Scam Dont Send The Item
    "Save the cheerleader - Save the world"
  • sarahg1969sarahg1969 Forumite
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    Definitely pass the cheque and the buyer's details on to the police.
  • paylesspayless Forumite
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    I'll be tempted to tell the buyer that no problem, happy to send the £780 difference, just need £20 uk postal order first to cover extra postal / bank charges incurred... need upfront to be able to cash the cheque
    Any posts on here are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as (financial) advice.
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