I live in Czech Republic and as there is no eBay, I buy stuff at UK eBay. Lately I encountered many auctions, where shippment is restricted to UK only, thus securing seller from scammer (not really, read some scamm stories, you will see that they know how to make you send it overseas), but on the other hand reducing number of potential buyers. Here are some basic tips how to check foreign bidders autenticity:
1. check their feedback - if this is not open for everyone to read, then there might be some potential risk involved
2. if the feedback is free to read, check who left the feedback - if there are feedbacks from people with no reputation and none from big and reputable sellers, then there is potential risk
3. require PayPal verified account and restrict shippment to verified address only
4. ask buyer if he is willing to wait till PayPal clears transaction - this takes usually no more than two days and serious buyer will have no problem to wait
5. ask buyer if he could send you an SMS containing his eBay name - from the phone number you can verify the national code of his GSM carrier and thus verify, that he really originates in the country he says - often scammers pretend to live in UK, but after they win the auction, they ask you to send item to Nigeria or elsewhere
6. never ever ship your item under pressure from "PayPal" or "eBay" emails requesting that you ship immediately, as they alegedly already receive payment and are witholding it until you provide proof of shippment. Wait for the money to be cleared.
I write this simple guide, because I am reliable and honest buyer, whose only handicap is, that doesnt live in privileged country, that has eBay and market big enough to provide reasonable prices. Hope this helps someone to avoid being scammed and at the same time broaden his potential buyers count.
Not every foreigner is scammer
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14 January 2009
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