Off Topic - Latest EBay Scam

From: Sean ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 08/03/04-03:50:13 PM Z
Message-id: <002d01c479a3$dbf73d20$6401a8c0@c600>


I realize that this is waaaaaayyyyy off topic, but wouldn't want anyone to
get scammed.

Here's how it works. I don't know the exact way that they're culling
information from EBay, but I assure you it's happening.

1. They (The Pond Scum trying to builk you out of your money) scoured EBay's
database looking for items over a certain dollar amount with an automated

2. They parse through all of the bidders to get they're EBay user IDs. Then
they compose a message with the item description and a "Second Chance
Offer". The offer is usually a lot less than the final ending price.

3. They send the message to all of the big email providers. Example: Your
EBay user ID is photoguy1984. They would send an email to,, etc. The
spoofed from address would be from the associated domain (i.e. if you received the message on your yahoo account). It
would essentially bypass EBay entirely. There would only be a link to the
original closed listing.

4. If you contact the return address, the message gets bounced around a
couple of zombied computers being used as email relays. You will finally be
contacted by the supposed seller instructing you to send payment at the
drastically reduced price and you'll get exactly what you want.

5. You send your money, and wait, and wait, and, you get the picture.

Why do I know about this? Well I had received several of these and didn't
pay too much attention to the text of the message. I just followed the link
to EBay and saw that the auction was closed. Oh, well. I received another
one and decided to contact the seller through EBay. Low and behold, the
seller had been paid and already shipped the item to the original high
bidder and both had posted positive feedback.

I then sent my findings to the EBay black hole for review, and shared my
experience with a professional spammer (no one knows who he actually works
for, but he seems to be well compensated). In about a half an hour he wrote
some scripts and showed me it was certainly possible.

Goitto go.

Surf Safe.

Sean Farren
Received on Tue Aug 3 15:50:31 2004

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