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PaulSanderson
(@paulsanderson)
Senior Member

Slightly off topic but I thought I would ask the….

My wife is trying to sell a large very heavy item of furniture on GumTree.

A lady has contacted her saying she will take the item without seeing it (other than some nice pictures). She has said she will pay by paypal and send a courier after payment has cleared.

We went back to her and said that we would prefer a bank transfer

Sge then said she was housebound and could only use paypal and has offered to make the payment as a gift so we dont pay charges.

"housebound and can only use paypal" is ringing alarm bells as I cannot see why she cannot make a bank transfer as she is obviously able to use paypal. That said, I cannot see how we are not protected if we wait for payment to clear before we allow her to send a courier.

Any thoughts?

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Posted : 07/09/2015 4:10 pm
jaclaz
(@jaclaz)
Community Legend

Looks too similar to this for my tastes
https://www.paypal-community.com/t5/Access-and-security/SELLING-CARS-ON-GUMTREE-SCAM-TO-WATCH-FOR/td-p/631754?profile.language=en-gb

Who is going to pay the courier according to the proposal?

The general case is
http//help.gumtree.com/articles/General_Information/Is-it-a-scam-The-top-warning-signs

You’ve been sent a payment for more than the asking price for your item.

A buyer, prospective tenant or even an employer will claim to have sent you a bank transfer, Paypal payment or cheque for more than the value of the items / rent / job. They’ll then ask for the surplus money to be returned to them or a third party. However, the Paypal payment email or bank transfer email would be fake and would have never credited your account or the cheque will end up bouncing and the payment will be deducted from your bank account.

jaclaz

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Posted : 07/09/2015 4:41 pm
PaulSanderson
(@paulsanderson)
Senior Member

Thanks jaclaz - glad my something smells fishy instinct was right

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Posted : 07/09/2015 4:46 pm
mscotgrove
(@mscotgrove)
Senior Member

I sell software with payment through PayPal. 99% of time this is absolutely fine and handles payment throughout the world.

Occasionally there is a dispute. Sometimes I suspect that the software has done a one off job and the customer does not want to pay. PayPal then decide who is right or wrong, and sometimes (not always) withdraw the money, maybe a few weeks later. Another case recently was when a 'customer' stated that his card was used by a third party - again several weeks after the event.

Receiving money with PayPal does not mean you have been paid! Wait three months(?) until it cannot be reversed, or accept there is a risk.

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Posted : 08/09/2015 1:29 am
jaclaz
(@jaclaz)
Community Legend

I sell software with payment through PayPal. 99% of time this is absolutely fine and handles payment throughout the world.

Occasionally there is a dispute. Sometimes I suspect that the software has done a one off job and the customer does not want to pay. PayPal then decide who is right or wrong, and sometimes (not always) withdraw the money, maybe a few weeks later. Another case recently was when a 'customer' stated that his card was used by a third party - again several weeks after the event.

Receiving money with PayPal does not mean you have been paid! Wait three months(?) until it cannot be reversed, or accept there is a risk.

Yep ), the same happens with most credit/dept cards, but in this kind of scam Paypal does not have a "role" usually.

Typically the scammer will send the victim a fake e-mail (from Paypal) attesting the payment, then the victim pays real money (usually via money transfer or similar, which is "real money") to the pick agent or courier.
The swindle is only about the "courier fee", noone will ever come to your house and pick up the item.

In a similar version the payment is actually made through Paypal but with stolen credentials/access, but it is not the "usual" claim, where both the seller and buyer may have their reasons, the sold item is never delivered and the claim is not issued by the swindler, but by the real owner of the account and since there was no actual delivery of the goods, the claim will correctly end by restoring the payed amount to the user which access was compromised.

The whole point is that the transaction through "reliable" (or covered by insurance) channels is null (as nothing was sent or delivered) whilst the one that actually happened (sending the money to the "courier") has "no way back".

jaclaz

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Posted : 08/09/2015 3:37 pm
Patrick4n6
(@patrick4n6)
Senior Member

This scam is easy to avoid.

1. Don't accept a payment if it's greater than the outstanding amount.

2. Don't pay the courier's fee, make the customer do that.

Also, if I were shopping on-line, I would absolutely use credit cards or even pay-pal instead of a bank transfer. With the cards or pay-pal, there is a dispute mechanism if the vendor is bogus. With a bank transfer there is often no way to get your money back. If I were buying something online and the seller insisted on a bank transfer, I would find somewhere else to buy it.

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Posted : 09/09/2015 3:12 am
jhup
 jhup
(@jhup)
Community Legend

Just read a write up on a scam that describes the over-payment piece.

The idea is that actual PayPal payment is never made but e-mails purporting to be from PayPal insist the refund must be made…

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10/09/2015 12:27 am
Patrick4n6
(@patrick4n6)
Senior Member

This scam started off as a cheque scam. They send you a fake cheque for too much for an item, then ask you to send the refund via a more instantaneous method. By the time the cheque bounces, you're out the money. The goods are usually just an excuse for the overpayment. The scammers often get the goods sent to some place they don't even intend collecting from since a physical address might get them caught when they come to collect the goods.

Emails purporting to convey a payment are another scam variation. In that case, you can simply check your own PayPal account to see if the payment hit. The payment scam emails are often used as a way to get your login details for the payment system through a fake PayPal or bank website. I never click on a link in an email unless it's from a trusted source. I always log into my bank or whatever and check it that way.

I'm not saying that what Paul is encountering is not a scam, but I don't immediately jump to the conclusion that it is one. If there's no overpayment, and the goods are being collected by a bona-fide courier company and delivered to a legitimate physical address that you can match to the buyer's name, then I don't see how they would be facilitating a scam.

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Posted : 10/09/2015 10:36 pm
jaclaz
(@jaclaz)
Community Legend

I'm not saying that what Paul is encountering is not a scam, but I don't immediately jump to the conclusion that it is one. If there's no overpayment, and the goods are being collected by a bona-fide courier company and delivered to a legitimate physical address that you can match to the buyer's name, then I don't see how they would be facilitating a scam.

Sure ) but (still for my tastes) a tad bit too many ifs and ands (that only Paul can know if apply to the specific case).

jaclaz

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Posted : 11/09/2015 12:26 am
Scar
 Scar
(@272)
Member

There is also an option on certain Paypal accounts (i.e. those that have been linked to a confirmed bank account, and fulfilled a couple of other criteria which escape my memory) to have Paypal essentially 'verify' that a purchase has been made without the money actually leaving your account.

It does this automatically on mine. For example, if I do an online shop and choose 'Pay via Paypal', my shopping is delivered and it is marked as 'Paid' on the receipt from the company, but the payment only actually leaves my account around two weeks later.

However, given that Paypal has a "Payment authorised" page, this person could, for example, screenshot that in order to convince you that she has made the payment, or forward you the notification email to say that the money has been paid, and then request that you refund the money when you don't send the item.

To go off on a slight tangent, if you're in SE England and the 'heavy item of furniture' is a sofabed then I'm currently looking for one! D

ReplyQuote
Posted : 16/09/2015 5:28 pm
PaulSanderson
(@paulsanderson)
Senior Member

Thanks scar, no I am in the far South West and the item is a Chesterfield/Chaise

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Posted : 16/09/2015 5:30 pm
jaclaz
(@jaclaz)
Community Legend

OT but not much, a new entry is a similar mechanism (retracted payment) used for frauds through Venmo
http//www.slate.com/articles/business/moneybox/2015/09/venmo_scam_and_fraud_why_it_s_easy_to_get_ripped_off_through_the_mobile.single.html

jaclaz

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Posted : 17/09/2015 9:39 pm
p38cyq
(@p38cyq)
Junior Member

Mr. Sanderson,

Find out what IP address that lady uses.

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Posted : 18/09/2015 3:37 pm
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