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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

HOW SAFE IS PAYPAL??
Manuello Paganelli, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | USA | Posted: 4:18 PM on 08.24.09
->> Is paypal still the best and safest way to deal? I am selling 24-70 MM canon lens and I got this responsed which reminds me of those old scams. But was surprise when the person mentioned paypal. I thought that it was the best way to make monetary transactions.

"Thanks for the quick response,Actually Am on a business trip in Netherlands i will not be back in the next 12days...I'm buying this item for my cousin as a birthday gift in oversea and i need this item as matter as urgently. i will be offer you $1200USD for the item and $100 USD for shipping cost... item is to be shipped directly from you to my cousin address a abroad via**USPS 5-8 Day service**.So kindly get back to me with your paypal email address to proceed with the transaction because paypal is the most secured and fastest means for online and if you don't have paypal account just logging on to www.paypal.com to create a paypal account and get back to me with it to proceed with the transaction."

Thanks

More to Come

www.ManuelloPaganelli.com
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Todd Spoth, Photographer, Student/Intern
Houston | TX | USA | Posted: 4:27 PM on 08.24.09
->> haha manuello! sell my old lens back to me!

also yes that is a scam. it is pretty easy to spot a scammer from a mile away these days.

they will mention paypal, a bank, or anything to get you to click on their fraudulent links. they will name try and lure you in with these fake websites with url's that look pretty real, et al, but they are all scams.

the real paypal has always been good to me. i forward them the scam emails and they appreciate it. ive never had a paypal deal go wrong, and am fortunate to have bought and sold tons of things on the internet and never have had a bad experience that couldnt be resolved.

post the lens for sale here and other forums, maybe craigslist. craigslist will generate scam emails for sure, heck even SS classified ads do, but you just have to know when do delete them and respond to the real inquiries.

to answer your question though, the real paypal is safe and secure just make sure you know the ins and outs of paypal before sending any big ticket item off.

-T
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Sheen Yen, Photographer
West Lafayette | IN | USA | Posted: 4:28 PM on 08.24.09
->> Manuello,
It can happen- chargeback fraud is a definite possibility. The buyer pays for the item using a hacked account, or simply an account they set up for the purposes of fraud. The item is shipped and they reroute the package, and then accept it at a different address. Technically they're not allowed to reroute the package but Fedex and UPS somehow allow it all the time.
Once they receive it at a different address, or before, they file a chargeback claim stating the transaction was unauthorized.

You're not covered under paypal's seller protection in this case since it was not delivered to the confirmed address, and they will go after you for the $$$.

This happened to me once through an ebay sale. They had everything- a hijacked or false ebay account created with a legitimate sounding name, a "confirmed address" (which is very easy to falsify).

The police department started researching this after I filed a report- and in short, that confirmed address was some sort of abandoned building where I suppose the scammers would have waited for the package.

But Paypal notified me about the chargeback before the item was delivered, and I called immediately to stop the shipment and reroute it back to me. Thanks to Fedex's Express's tracking system and tracing department, they were able to reroute the package back to me and I was safe. But nonetheless, nerve racking and really frustrating.
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Mike Last, Student/Intern, Photographer
London | Ontario | Canada | Posted: 4:30 PM on 08.24.09
->> That email reads like a scam to me.

-Doesn't mention the lens or anything camera related.
-$1200 for an overseas cousins birthday gift?
-Broken english. I realize English isn't everyone's first language... but "i need this item as matter as urgently." is enough to scare me away.
-The hyperlink in your email account may actually point to a fraudulent Paypal website which is a fake front that steals your login info when you do try to log in to it.


Mike
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Luke Sharrett, Student/Intern
Forest | VA | United States | Posted: 4:36 PM on 08.24.09
->> This has all the makings of a classic nigerian 419 scam. A buyer "on vacation" overseas offering to pay you more than your asking price is almost always trouble. This guy is most likely using a stolen credit card and will end up with a free 24-70 after paypal takes the stolen funds back out of your account. My advice would be to steer clear, maybe try selling to KEH or Adorama?
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Manuello Paganelli, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | USA | Posted: 4:37 PM on 08.24.09
->> Folks thanks. I know is a scam. I just didnt think you could do it using paypall. Thought was bullet proof LOL

YIKESS!
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Delane B. Rouse, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | US | Posted: 5:00 PM on 08.24.09
->> it's bullet proof for PayPal. but not for you. That's assuming that you'd be directed to the REAL paypal and not some scam (link) site that LOOKS like paypal.

(If a message has the phrase "am on a trip...." I don't care if it's an email from my mother's account....it's a SCAM.) But you already know that.

dbr
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Philip Johnson, Photographer
Garland | TX | USA | Posted: 5:11 PM on 08.24.09
->> when using Paypal just don't use a link someone sends you. Go to the site yourself and enter in all the information necessary. Like other have said they can put false links for you to use.
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Joseph Zimmerman, Photographer
Howard | Pa | USA | Posted: 10:05 PM on 08.24.09
->> I stumbled across a website on these scams. The folks running this website turn the scam against the scammers. Don't go to this website if you don't want to spend hours of your time laughing your arse off. http://www.419eater.com/ .... My favorite story off them all is http://www.419eater.com/html/bigman.htm
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Mark Peters, Photographer
Highland | IL | USA | Posted: 10:32 PM on 08.24.09
->> Joe - that's a good one. Here's my favorite - he actually got one of these guys to get a tattoo....

http://www.419eater.com/html/okorie.htm
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Eugenio Cebollero, Photographer
Kernersville | NC | US | Posted: 7:47 AM on 08.25.09
->> Manuello,

Good on you for asking first. I say you send the guy a paper towel roll with cheap plastic magnifying glasses on the end and pass it off as a "lens." Anyone ever read the "P-P-P-Powerbook" scambait story? It's been on the net for years now. Lots of pictures and forum participation on this one.

http://www.zug.com/pranks/powerbook/

Chris Hansen from NBC's Dateline (also famous from the "To Catch a Predator" documentaries) did a documentary that traces the Nigerian scammers all the way back to South Africa (or wherever these scams originate). This is very educational stuff as much as it is humorous.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17697615/ns/dateline_nbc-to_catch_a_con_man/
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Mark Peters, Photographer
Highland | IL | USA | Posted: 9:05 AM on 08.25.09
->> "(or wherever these scams originate)"......

There's a reason they're called NIGERIAN.....
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JC Ridley, Photographer
Coral Springs | FL | US | Posted: 9:43 AM on 08.25.09
->> I will only ship a camera or lens to the US, and the buyer must have a confirmed address
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Jim Colburn, Photo Editor, Photographer
McAllen | TX | USA | Posted: 10:00 AM on 08.25.09
->> "Is paypal still the best and safest way to deal?"

PayPal has never been the best or the safest way to deal. It's okay if you're a buyer but it sucks if you're a seller. They get access to your bank account and can withdraw money with no notice and no comeback. They supposedly have a dispute resolution process but there's no way to tell if it's been fair. I suggest you have a look at the www.paypalsucks.com web site.

Now eBay will only accept listing with (realistically) PayPal as the payment method. No more checks or money orders. I've done more than 150 deals on eBay with a 99 percent positive rating but won't do any more because they will not let me accept only checks or money orders. Of course the new system means that PayPal (a division) always gets another cut of the transaction...
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Jeff Stanton, Photographer
Princeton | IN | USA | Posted: 11:10 AM on 08.25.09
->> Jim is absolutely correct. Paypal dipped into my checking account for a fee I gave no authorization for and when I called Paypal about it, they claimed that I did authorize it. I asked them to resend me the transaction email where I had authorized it and they couldn't. I had to get a supervisor on the phone to reverse the charge which they finally did.

Paypal works very well in many matters. True, if you are the seller, they ding you on the fees. That's how they make their money. If you're the buyer, you pay no fees.
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Manuello Paganelli, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | USA | Posted: 11:36 AM on 08.25.09
->> Jeff if you are the seller then you charge the buyer for those fees. That is what I had done in the past and never had a problem. FOlks who want what you are selling will pay for those fees.

BTW those folks who sent me private emails, thanks for your kind advices. But my question was about the safety of paypal.. I would NEVER click on a link "paypal or ebay" send to me by faceless person. I am able to smell a scam before they send me an email :) Too many red flags.
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Jim Colburn, Photo Editor, Photographer
McAllen | TX | USA | Posted: 1:01 PM on 08.25.09
->> "...if you are the seller then you charge the buyer for those fees."

That's not allowed under the PayPal terms of service.
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Eugenio Cebollero, Photographer
Kernersville | NC | US | Posted: 2:57 PM on 08.25.09
->> Mark, thank you for capitalizing on a very poorly worded thought at my expense. I actually had to laugh at myself.
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N. Scott Trimble, Photographer
Lake Oswego | OR | USA | Posted: 3:48 PM on 08.25.09
->> Whenever I deal with something I don't know is legit (Amazon yes, xyzbiz.com, no) I NEVER use their links to Paypal or the like. I access it directly and proceed accordingly.

Always look at the bottom of your browser too when you roll your cursor over a link, to make sure it goes where it is supposed to.

I get from time to time email from ebay, paypal, others that when I roll over the link, it is a suspect address underneath
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Philip Bowen, Photographer
Kampala | UG | Uganda | Posted: 4:01 PM on 08.25.09
->> Before you write off anything overseas as a scam as a matter of course, know that there are some people (me) with very sketchy-sounding credentials who are legit.

I live in Uganda, my mailing address is in Miami (usabox.com - physical street address, scans all incoming mail, I can look at it online and trash the junk, then forward the rest to me), I would prefer that packages get sent either to my family in MN or to colleagues who are traveling here who can bring them to me, and paypal is sanctioned in Uganda so I can't use it. Would you follow through on a transaction with me without worry?

The exception that proves the rule, I guess. :)
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Wes Hope, Photographer
Maryville | TN | USA | Posted: 5:00 PM on 08.25.09
->> Jim said ->> "...if you are the seller then you charge the buyer for those fees."

That's not allowed under the PayPal terms of service.
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Wes Hope, Photographer
Maryville | TN | USA | Posted: 5:01 PM on 08.25.09
->> Jim said ->> "...if you are the seller then you charge the buyer for those fees."

That's not allowed under the PayPal terms of service.

--Exactly... something I wish more SportsShooter members realized when listing gear in the classifieds.

(Sorry for the double-post... apparently I accidentally tried to do some HTML or something).
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Delane B. Rouse, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | US | Posted: 5:42 PM on 08.25.09
->> Just raise your price by 3.5% (or whatever the paypal fee is) and promote it as "seller pays all paypal fees"
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Chris Rozema, Photographer, Assistant
Rockford | MI | USA | Posted: 10:02 PM on 08.25.09
->> I have used PayPal for many years and have only had problems a few times. The problem I have had each time was charge back disputes were the buyer disputes the charge -- saying they never received it or someone unauthorized used their card for this purchase. This is happening more and more and they now call it "Friendly Fraud". So if you are sending an item be sure to photograph and document exactly what you are sending, it has a tracking number and has to be signed for when received.

Not that I would use it for this case, since it does sound like a scam.
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Michael Fischer, Photographer
Spencer | Ia | USA | Posted: 11:44 PM on 08.25.09
->> I'll use Paypal but only because they'll take my credit card and not expose the account number etc to a potential bad guy.

The two times I have gotten stung on purchases, I didn't screw around with paypal. I'd file a complaint, but then call my credit card company and file the real complaint.

"Did you received any of the merchandise, Mr. Fischer?" the Visa customer service person asked last time. It was for some Nikon products I was buying used when I was switching back.

I told her "no".. she started a investigation and several days later I had my credit.

Who got hung? Well, our friends at Paypal. It's the price they pay for the 3% handling fee.
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Jeff Stanton, Photographer
Princeton | IN | USA | Posted: 12:10 AM on 08.26.09
->> Manuello, if you are selling through eBay, for example, you are not permitted to add fees. Afterall, it's an auction and whatever it sells for, is what it sells for, but yes, if you are having a private sale, like I buy a lens from you, then you can add the fees to the sale if we both agree.
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Patrick Meredith, Photographer, Assistant
Austin | TX | USA | Posted: 12:15 AM on 08.26.09
->> I don't use paypal anymore unless I'm dealing with someone I know or trust. I've had people attempt to scam me after selling a large amount of photo gear on *Bay. I once sent over $2,000 worth of photography gear to a single buyer. I had the money already in my banking account and the buyer claimed he never received ANY of the items (3 separate boxes), despite they were signed for and had tracking numbers. Paypal immediately yanked the money out of my checking account (causing me to overdraft - $140 in charges there) and froze my account 'pending investigation.'
I had to call, fax, email, call and call for over three weeks to get them to talk to me. Not to mention I was charged $14.95 to open a dispute just to get my money back. ALL WHILE MY GEAR WAS RELISTED ON E*AY BY THE ORIGINAL BUYER. In the end it worked out in my favor, but at the cost of over $150 for being an honest seller.
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Scott Serio, Photo Editor, Photographer
Colora | MD | USA | Posted: 3:08 AM on 08.26.09
->> Interesting Patrick, that is a sick story, but I can see it happening as a seller via Ebay. Generally, Paypal has been very good to me as a buyer. They do require some hoops to jump through, but they are investigating claims virtually in cyberspace. Sometimes it takes a while to physically get the information you need to the right person. That being said, they have protected me every time there was an issue.

As for the fees, Delane is right. You just have to build that 3.5% or whatever it is, into your price point and realize it is there. For straight cash for services, it shouldn't be an issue at all. And, for transactions across borders, it is definitely convenient. I still have a check from Racing Post-UK I can't find a bank to cash. Would have been better as a wire transfer or Paypal.

Overall, they are a great outfit. Just have to watch for the scammers posing as Paypal with those ghost-redirect links.
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Phil Hawkins, Photographer
Fresno | ca | usa | Posted: 1:13 PM on 08.26.09
->> Pay Pal itself is safe, I use it all the time, but that "inquiry" is a scam.
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Thread Title: HOW SAFE IS PAYPAL??
Thread Started By: Manuello Paganelli
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