If you sell online and ship items, be very careful anytime you ship gold, silver, jewelry, electronics or other high-value small items. There are numerous scammers out there trying to defraud auctioneers every single day.
Some things to be on the lookout for:
- Someone who buys gold, silver or jewelry and immediately contacts you to pay and wants immediate shipment. The more they push, the more likely they are trying to scam you.
- Someone who refuses to talk on the phone.
- ANYONE who wants the items shipped to a different address.
- Anyone who has registration information that does not look “just right” to you.
Some simple tips for protecting yourself:
- Always and ONLY ship to the verified address on the card used to pay. If you ship items to an address that does not match the card, you will LOSE the chargeback. The buyer will have the items and you will be left holding the bag. Law enforcement will typically not do anything about this.
- You may want to update your auction terms to reflect that you can require wire transfers for payment on all purchases exceeding a certain amount.
- If the credit card address and shipping address are in different states - RED FLAG!
There have been reports of numerous auctioneers who have lost significant amounts of money due to this. The typical loss is $2500-$10,000. Don't be one of them!
You can verify the card address used to register for an account on K-BID.com by navigating to the bidder detail page:
TIP: If you've fallen victim to a shipping scam or fraud you may want to consider filing a police report. In some cases, these losses can be written off as an expense with the correct paperwork. Consult with your accountant or CPA for more information on this topic.