Recognising Hijacked accounts

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Hi - Thanks for looking at this guide. I  have set up this page because a friend of mine had her account hijacked. Since then, I've seen just how serious the hijacker problem is on eBay, for both buyers and sellers.


* Acknowledgements to eBay member extreme_redeye


What are Hijacked accounts?

Hijacked accounts are eBay member accounts that have been taken over by thieves. They list expensive but non-existent items, usually for a very short time.

The thieves are only interested in getting all bidders to contact them.  They try to persuade the bidders to buy outside eBay's system, using unsafe payment methods such as Western Union wire transfer. They take the money, leaving genuine members ripped off, with no item and no way to recover their funds.

How do Hijackers affect me?

* If you try to buy from a hijacked account, you will lose your money

* If you contact a hijacker, he will have your email address and you'll be the next target for the hijackers

* If your account is hijacked, you will lose control of your account until you can regain it with the help of eBay support staff

How do I spot Hijacked accounts?

When you know the signs, hijacked accounts are usually easy to spot. Some of the signs are:

  •    An email address in the listing, with instructions to  "Contact me here because...." followed by some weak excuse, like "my email address is spammed".
  •    Expensive items such as laptops, mobile phones, cars and tractors, being sold well below retail price.
  •    One day listings.
  •    Items in odd categories, e.g. Laptops in Antique Coins.
  •    Seller location, item location and currency don't match.
  •    Payment by cash, wire, or Western Union.
  •    Feedback does not match items, e.g. no selling history, or sells items totally unrelated to the current listing.
  •    Bidder ID kept private.
  •    Free shipping worldwide.
  •    Listing and pics have been copied from other listing.
  •   Seller has several ads with quite different listing styles.
  •    Poor English in terms of Sale, but good English elsewhere in listing (because it's been copied)


How can you help?

Go to the Member to Member Help board in Australia's Community Forums, to learn how you can help to make eBay a safer place to buy.


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