How to Avoid Phishing, Fraud, Scams & Account Break-Ins

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How to Avoid Phishing, Fraud, Scams and Account Break-Ins on eBay

eBay is top of the pile when it comes to websites where you can make money. Unfortunately, with its success follow a bunch of scammers keen to dig uninvited fingers into your wallet. eBay does a good job of fishing out the phishers, but it pays to act with caution. Keep the following six things in mind when you’re doing business on eBay and avoid falling foul of the scammers.

1. eBay will always address you by name – if an email is addressed generically – for example ‘Dear eBay Member’, chances are it’s from a scammer.

2. Check that every email you receive also lands in your My Messages box on eBay – if it doesn’t, there’s a good chance it’s from a scammer. Download the eBay Toolbar with Account Guard – this tool can check your emails and tell you if any of them are illegitimate.

3. If you receive an email with a link to a site that looks exactly like an eBay sign-in page, it may be a spoof – check the url bar in your browser – if ‘ebay’ isn’t the address, then it’s not an eBay page.

4. eBay never request passwords, account info, or any financial info by email. If you receive an email request for any of that, chances are it’s a scammer. Don’t reply to it. Don’t click on any links – rather than click, you can copy and paste links into your browser. If there are any attachments, don’t click on them – eBay don’t send attachments via email.

5. Don’t send personal information via email. If you receive any email that you believe may be a spoof, forward it to spoof AT ebay.com  so eBay can check it out.

6. Always communicate with buyers and other sellers through the eBay mailing system – it makes it easier for eBay to trace emails. eBay can’t offer you any support or act on any communication that hasn’t gone through eBay.


For most of the people most of the time, eBay is a great place to do business, and the majority of people don’t get scammed. Follow the guidelines above and ensure you remain in that group of people. If you do fall foul of a scammer, report the event to eBay immediately, change your password, and change your email address.

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