Don't get conned.
The following is sound advice for buyers and sellers from personal experience and what I have seen recently on eBay.
For the Buyers
1. Read all the advert as a BOX usually means just the BOX.
2. Especially read the last paragraphs or any small print carefully as you could be buying just a picture
3. View any advert without technical information suspiciously as this may mean you are not looking at what you think you are.
4. Research what you are looking for elsewhere and read review sites as they will be more inclined to be truthful.
5. Do not deal with any seller who requests you to send to a different address from that listed on eBay.
6. Messages in auctions like BEFORE BIDDING CONTACT ME means they want to sell outside of eBay and usually means a request for money transfer and no goods. This is often the strategy used by hijackers of bone fide eBay accounts
7. Always use the ASK Seller eBay link to communicate with sellers as this is recorded and will be sent directly to them.
8. Never answer emails purporting to be eBay Customer Rep asking to confirm address as eBay already know it and do not use anything other than an eBay authorised address. If unsure about a response address simply put it in Google to see who they really are.
9. Asking to go to another website are usually scams to get you to click on them and they get paid per click.
10. Check feedback comments correspond to actual items sold.
11. Treat with suspicion any similar comments such as, not available retail, contact via email address.
12. Do not trust adverts where the location of seller and goods do not match.
13. Be wary of sellers who dont have a track record for selling lots of similar items.
For the Sellers
1. Be very wary of requests to ship items to relatives in other countries, especially Africa, put SCAM EBAY NIGERIA into Google and see for yourself. These are usually followed up with fake Paypal emails, often with spilling mistakes in them.
2. Be wary of requests to end auctions early for bigger payments.
3. Recognise fake Paypal Payment emails with delivery addresses, especially for items where the auctions not ended.
4. View with suspicion and don’t ship on any BUY IT NOW offers that have ended without payment within a day. There is no reason why the buyer would not pay for it then, even taking time zones into account, one day should be viewed as the maximum.
5. Do not accept Cashiers Cheques from Nigeria, they can clear only to be found fake when drawn against the issuing bank.
6. Ignore any Paypal email claiming that once item was shipped and the tracking number sent to buyer the funds would be released. Its a scam, scam, scam.
7. International buyers of items listed as NO INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING.
8. Always check your Paypal account rather than believe any emails purporting to be from Paypal.
9. Never proceed with sales after you receive an email from Paypal verifying a buyer, its a fake they dont do that.
10. Bad spelling and poor grammer on emails confirming payment or information from either eBay or Paypal will be fakes.