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-Andy-

Beware of sellers who refuse to use Paypal

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snolly50

Strong practical advice, an excellent admonition to benefit those prudent enough to heed. Thanks.

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taj

As in all deals , trust has a huge role to play there . I have in past used Western Union for Sellers that I met through FB , and the deals went through without a single hiccup . In the end , you have to make your own choices : my golden rule If the deal is too good to be true , then it's  most likely dangerous ...

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siteseer
8 hours ago, -Andy- said:

Hi all, I am noticing an increasing number of sellers (especially those based in Asia) who advertise on Facebook, Instagram, WeChat and other social media instead of eBay. Unfortunately, many of them do not use Paypal. As you know, not every payment platform has buyer protection.

 

To protect yourself, please carry out these checks:

 

1) Find out why the seller doesn't use Paypal. Is it for a legitimate reason? E.g. a Lebanese seller can't use Paypal as it's restricted there. Mainland China sellers apparently, CAN use Paypal, so take extra care if they refuse to use it.

 

2) Check the seller's track records. Ask friends and trusted collectors if any of them have ever made successful dealings with the seller.

 

3) Beware of similar photos on multiple platforms. Scammers sometimes create fake profiles that look just like a legitimate dealer, and steal their pictures as well. Perform background checks. Don't just assume that a dealer has multiple accounts, FIND OUT. Message him on his separate accounts (e.g. Facebook and eBay) and see if he notices.

 

4) Beware of non-Paypal platforms such as AliPay, WeChat and Western Union etc. There is little-to-no buyer protection on them. Don't send your money over unless you are absolutely sure of this deal.

 

5) Ask questions! Does the dealer know what shipping to use? Can the dealer take multiple photos of the fossil for you at specific angles you request? Is the dealer evasive with his answers? Is the deal too good to be true? There is no such thing as too much checking.

 

6) Be objective. It doesn't matter how friendly a dealer is. He could be the friendliest man on the planet, asking you about your family and work, laughing at your jokes, liking all your pictures. Most of the time, all they want is your money. Dealers who genuinely want to be your friend are rare gems, and worth holding on to.

 

7) Facebook mutual friends / Instagram followers doesn't matter. Scammers can make attractive accounts and add a thousand friends just to look trustworthy. I've seen a scammer FB account that shared over 100 mutual friends with me.

 

8) Does your credit card protect you? Assuming the dealer is sketchy, but you are somewhat sure of this deal, find out if your credit card/bank can protect you if this is a scam. Take note that AliPay doesn't work with many major credit cards.

 

9) If all else fails, demand Paypal. If the dealer genuinely wants business, and he operates in a country with Paypal, then it's in his best interest to use Paypal. Remember - great fossils appear every other day. Is this deal so special as to be worth the risk you're taking?

 

Lastly, don't forget to post some pictures here at TFF; there are many experts here more than willing to share their expertise. Good luck!

 

 

I like buying stuff with Paypal but one thing to keep in mind is that Paypal charges the seller but not the buyer.  Paypal charges extra if you want a check and then it takes weeks to get it and sometimes you don't get it. Yeah, Paypal is great for a buyer but can be a pain for a seller.

 

 

 

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LordTrilobite

I haven't come across this problem myself yet. But this is definitely a good informative topic.

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-Andy-
12 hours ago, snolly50 said:

Strong practical advice, an excellent admonition to benefit those prudent enough to heed. Thanks.

 

I've been burnt recently, so yeah I am hoping to prevent others from falling for similar tricks.

 

5 hours ago, taj said:

As in all deals , trust has a huge role to play there . I have in past used Western Union for Sellers that I met through FB , and the deals went through without a single hiccup . In the end , you have to make your own choices : my golden rule If the deal is too good to be true , then it's  most likely dangerous ...

 

I've used WU on deals made through Facebook too. I did receive my fossil in the end. It's Alipay and WeChat that I am more wary of at the moment. You would be impressed at the lengths some scammers would go to create legitimate-looking accounts.

 

4 hours ago, siteseer said:

 

 

I like buying stuff with Paypal but one thing to keep in mind is that Paypal charges the seller but not the buyer.  Paypal charges extra if you want a check and then it takes weeks to get it and sometimes you don't get it. Yeah, Paypal is great for a buyer but can be a pain for a seller.

 

 

 

 

That's true! Some deals I know are made with the agreement that the buyer would absorb the Paypal fee.

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Tidgy's Dad

A very useful and informative thread. 

I hope many will read this and take heed. 

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SULLY

I have been burned using Western Union in the past. Wether you like PayPal or not, it's a main staple in business transactions these days. If someone is not willing to accept PayPal for funds, I would HIGHLY advise you not to roll the dice. With Western Union, you have absolutely no recourse regardless of what there problem is. Just my .02 from experience.

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aplomado

And beware of sellers who want you to use the "gift" function of paypal to "avoid the fees"! 

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taj
56 minutes ago, aplomado said:

And beware of sellers who want you to use the "gift" function of paypal to "avoid the fees"! 

Done that also . But usually sellers are transparent there : either use the agreed upon price and use the gift option , or add the extra fee that Paypal is charging them to the bill ....

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siteseer
18 hours ago, SULLY said:

I have been burned using Western Union in the past. Wether you like PayPal or not, it's a main staple in business transactions these days. If someone is not willing to accept PayPal for funds, I would HIGHLY advise you not to roll the dice. With Western Union, you have absolutely no recourse regardless of what there problem is. Just my .02 from experience.

 

A couple of months ago, an FF member bought something from me paying by Western Union.  It was a smooth transaction.  I got paid and he got the fossil.  I think you really have to have some idea of the seller before you send out money in any way.  Matt might have asked around about me or saw that I've been here a while and have known some of the other members before there was an FF.  I don't know.  I didn't know he was taking more of a risk paying me that way.  Western Union used to be a pretty common way to send money. 

 

 

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-Andy-
2 hours ago, siteseer said:

 

A couple of months ago, an FF member bought something from me paying by Western Union.  It was a smooth transaction.  I got paid and he got the fossil.  I think you really have to have some idea of the seller before you send out money in any way.  Matt might have asked around about me or saw that I've been here a while and have known some of the other members before there was an FF.  I don't know.  I didn't know he was taking more of a risk paying me that way.  Western Union used to be a pretty common way to send money. 

 

 

 

I get ya. As a general rule though, if a new seller insists on Western Union and I see no other way to get the fossil, I would do a background check and ask around.

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-Andy-
2 hours ago, siteseer said:

 

A couple of months ago, an FF member bought something from me paying by Western Union.  It was a smooth transaction.  I got paid and he got the fossil.  I think you really have to have some idea of the seller before you send out money in any way.  Matt might have asked around about me or saw that I've been here a while and have known some of the other members before there was an FF.  I don't know.  I didn't know he was taking more of a risk paying me that way.  Western Union used to be a pretty common way to send money. 

 

 

 

I get ya. As a general rule though, if a new seller insists on Western Union and I see no other way to get the fossil, I would do a background check and ask around.

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SULLY

It's all in who you know anymore!

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aplomado
20 hours ago, taj said:

Done that also . But usually sellers are transparent there : either use the agreed upon price and use the gift option , or add the extra fee that Paypal is charging them to the bill ....

If you pay with the "gift" option, you have no recourse of the seller scams you... because the seller is trying to scam paypal by falsely claiming the payment is a gift.  Never do it.

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JohnJ

General advice on the types of scams is good information.  Alluding to specific sellers, or providing enough specifics to identify a seller, should be avoided to stay within TFF guidelines.

 Thanks. ;)

 

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SULLY

It never fails. You can't trust new people selling anymore. The temptation is always there because they always have something cool at a killer deal. But anymore, you have to trust your gut and more important, take a little time to do some research on the web to see if you can learn anything about them before you commit to anything. It's sad and frustrating, but it's the world we live!

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Aunduril

Well said sound advice to keep in mind!

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-Andy-

I am still monitoring the group of Chinese fossil scammers.

 

They are removing all negative comments off their walls, giving the appearance of a legitimate-looking service. I can't call some of them out on Facebook as I haven't done any business with them before, but if you ever fall prey to one, please do whatever you can to alert Facebook/Instagram of the scam.

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