Worried that the item you're buying is being shill bidded? Shill bidding is when a seller either uses another ebay account they own, or have a friend bid on an item you are bidding on - to artificially up the final price.
Okay so what should you look for, and mark my words it is worth checking?
1. Check the bids on your item, and make a note of the other bidders IDs.
2. Go to Advanced Search at the top of every ebay page on the right.
3. You will notice that one of the options on the left is to Search for Items by Bidder. Click this option.
4. In the box enter the bidders User Id and also make sure you click the Include completed items box. Also ensure that you tab the 'Even if not the highest bidder'. This is normally tabbed by default.
What you get then is the results page, which shows you all the items that the bidders has bid on, won and not won.
You need to look at the column that says SELLER - if you see the same seller ID repeated more than once in a short space of time.
Another thing to look out for and its a classic sign, is if the buyer and seller have not exchanged feedback. Or they may have exhanged feedback once, but only once.
I have a good example - if you check the following USER ID - sarajevo2006 using the criteria I have set out . You will see plenty of bids on malibane auctions. Not always the same sort of items, and not always as winning bidder. No feedback has been exchanged either - the classic sign.
Yes and it looks like harrods1306 is an accomplice too.
Shill bidders and sellers tend not to feedback as obviuosly neither is selling to the other - so stupidly theres no need to feedback and draw attention to the fact that the shill bid was too high, and they ended up winning their own item.
Some buyers do favour the same seller - but you would expect them to be buying the same item, and deviate too drastically. So don't assume the worst if you see the same seller id in the bidders completed items page - but apply the above and you can work things out for yourself.
There is a further information at the ebay tutorial located here
Shill Bidding Tutorial as well as a report item link. And if you suspect an item of being shill bidded then report it.
Good luck - Be safe and be aware.