Ever Fallen Victim To Shill Bidding?

Discussion in Scams = To Good To Be True started by Denis Hard • Aug 26, 2015.

  1. Denis Hard

    Denis HardWell-Known Member

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    The reason I hate auctions on eBay is because it's relatively easy to get scammed. The seller can have a friend bid on an item they are selling so the price can be hiked. Some sellers I've heard can create a separate account so they can bid on the items they sell themselves.

    While it's relatively easy to identify shill bidders who pose as buyers by taking a look at their bidding history, it's not worth it because you'll spend too much time on it.

    While auctioning is dying off on Ebay, for those of you who've bought items there in the past, did you ever fall victim to shill bidding? Pay more than what an item's worth because shill bidders drove the price up?
     
  2. Ke Gordon

    Ke GordonWell-Known Member

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    I never heard the term Shill bidders before. I have never bought anything on ebay. I always found it confusing. My sister has, though and has gotten some really good buys. She also sold a lego set on ebay that she was paid almost a thousand dollars for. Far more than she originally paid for it! I am not sure if she ever ran into that or not.
     
  3. Diane Lane

    Diane LaneWell-Known Member

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    I've seen it happen, but it's been a while. I mainly use Buy It Now to purchase on eBay these days, although I will occasionally buy at auction. The things I buy at auction are ones that I have a set price for, and won't go above that, and it's usually a pretty low threshold. eBay has made it difficult to backtrack a lot of transactions since they hide buyer names now. I appreciate that from the perspective of someone with a stalker, but I miss being able to backtrack and see peoples' purchases, as well as seeing the feedback trail to determine whether people are genuine or scammers. I have no doubt this still occurs. I've never done it myself, and when I've sold high priced items, I would set a reserve, which of course turns off some potential buyers, but since I don't engage in shenanigans, I have to protect myself somehow.
     
  4. Lushlala

    LushlalaWell-Known Member

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    I've heard of the practice, but I didn't know there was a term to describe it. So i've learnt something today, thanks @Denis Hard! But luckily, I've never been victim to it. I like DianeLane, have taken to going for "buy it now" offers more than the auction type sales because you always get the annoying types who swoop in at the last minute and outbid you! Sometimes I think it's just for the thrill, because they don't always commit to the purchase....time wasters, the lot of them!!
     
  5. Diane Lane

    Diane LaneWell-Known Member

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    Haha @Lushlala@Lushlala I agree, I think it's sometimes for the thrill, and I also think some people simply get their fun by ruining things for others. I have occasionally swooped in to snatch something up, but that's only when I need something in particular for a project and that is the only one available at that price, but usually I leave it to the person who's been patiently waiting for a week with a penny over starting price bid.
     
  6. Rosyrain

    RosyrainActive Member

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    I actually just learned about shill bidding, and it is an act of fraud. When you bid on things on eBay, there are a couple of things to look for to determine if you might be wrapped up in a shill bidding scam. Look at the seller's account history. If the seller is new to the site or has not sold many items, and yet there are a lot of bids, it is a good indication that the person is involved in shill bidding. Also if you have a seller that has a lot of bids on items from a repeat buyer, this should send up red flags to you as well. The best rule of thumb is that if you think you smell a scam, you are probably right and should not work with the seller. EBay takes fraud very seriously.
     
  7. sidney

    sidneyWell-Known Member

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    New accounts that only bid on one seller are almost always a sure indicator of shill bidding. I have seen this also with local sellers who think that the bids on their items are too low, so they outbid the current bid so that it doesn't get bought. I understand that they don't want to get shortchanged, but if they want a set price then they should just opt for the Buy it Now option rather than an auction. I'm sue they hope that they can find a couple of competing buyers who will overbid on their items, that's why they choose to auction it.
     
  8. Lushlala

    LushlalaWell-Known Member

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    Aww Diane Lane, you're so sweet! Yet they wouldn't consider that if positions were reversed! -and yes, there's also the practice mentioned by sidney above! I think it's to give the impression that there's a bidding war going on, and also to escalate the price; which is stupid because if they're that greedy they bid so high that the rest of the genuine bidders opt to throw the towel in. Then what? They've shot themselves in the foot, and go home empty handed. They're so short sighted it's sad. Then next thing you know, the item pops up again, re-listed hehe!!