Buyer Beware! Lastest scam on Amazon

After years of loyal service, my trusty laptop has earned a well deserved retirement, so a few days ago I headed over to my favorite online superstore, Amazon…

Since my Toshiba had served me so well, I figured that was a good place to start and I found some listings that made my miserly heart soar…(little did I know it would come crashing down a few hours later.)

Can you believe these deals!!!

amazon-com-toshiba-laptop-toshiba-15-to-15-9-inches-computers-tablets-computers-electronicsamazon-com-toshiba-laptop-toshiba-2-15-to-15-9-inches-computers-tablets-computers-electronics

 

$439.00 !!!! I am so getting my tech on…

 

Why didn’t I question the ridiculously low price from a seller with no feedback?ibuy-discount-on-amazon-usa-marketplace-pulse

 

Well, according to the seller profile this was a newly launched store. Hey, we all have to start somewhere… they were obviously selling a few items at a loss to get customers to give them a shot. You know, like a grand-opening sale…. Duh…

And since I’m all about doing my part, I dropped one of those suckers in my cart and raced to check-out before they were gone.

And that’s when things started to get weird….

What!!!! Seller cannot ship to this address, please select another from your contacts. I order from the big A all the time—It’s like an addiction. Since I know there’s nothing wrong with my address, I messaged the seller using Amazon’s contact form… all good right?

So as I waited for a reply, I decide to go back to the buying options listed sellers and check to make sure I hadn’t miss anything.

That’s when I notice the seller asking users to contact them before ordering…

~NEW~Warranty~Cöntact me before ordëring~info@ibuy.discount~ FREE SHIPPING ~Never used, but i can’t list it as a new product due to Amazon policy, they don’t allow me to list it as a new product.

That violates Amazon’s Terms of Use and I’m feeling a slight twinge that something’s not right. Notice the oddly placed dots and tildes? But once in the grips of techno-thrall, I just can’t help myself. So I shoot of an email to: info@ibuy.discount

ordering toshiba laptop

Candace Vianna <candace.vianna.writes@gmail.com> Mon, Sep 12, 2016 at 12:50 PM
To: info@ibuy.discount

Good day, I attempted to order

2016 Newest Toshiba Satellite S55T 15.6″ 4K HD (3840×2160) Touchscreen Flagship Laptop, Intel i7-6500U 2.5GHz, NVIDIA GeForce 930M 2GB DDR3, 12GB RAM, 1TB HDD, Backlit Keyboard, HDMI, Windows 10

$479.47 and was told there was a problem with my shipping address during checkout. Can you please assist me with this matter.

After a few hours, I receive a notification from  Amazon telling me the message sent through them could not be delivered… moments later I receive this from the seller:


ordering toshiba laptop

Mark McDade <info@ibuy.discount> Mon, Sep 12, 2016 at 3:37 PM
To: Candace Vianna <candace.vianna.writes@gmail.com>

Hello,

First of all let me apologize for my late answer.
I sell it for less because I’m moving to Europe with my wife and I need to sell it fast.
Let me explain you my transaction conditions for 2016 Newest Toshiba Satellite S55T 15.6″ 4K HD (3840×2160) Touchscreen Flagship Laptop, Intel i7-6500U 2.5GHz, NVIDIA GeForce 930M 2GB DDR3, 12GB RAM, 1TB HDD, Backlit Keyboard, HDMI, Windows 10
The item is brand new, never used. I can’t list it as a new product due to Amazon policy, they don’t allow me to list it as a new product.
The total price is $479.00, including all shipping and insurance fees into US and Canada. For international shipments we charge a $10 fee. If you want to buy it, please send me your shipping address (phone number, your complete name, delivery address) and I will contact Amazon to start a transaction for us. You will have to complete the payment through them. Dispatch will be by normal UPS Services, which takes 3-5 days, depending on where you are located.
My return policy is full refund within 21 days.

For more information, please don’t hesitate to contact me!

Many Thanks,
Mark McDade

Now at this point, I have to give Amazon.com a big, fat, sloppy thank you kiss for all their nifty safe-guards that I almost overlooked.

Notice the, ” I will contact Amazon to start a transaction for us,” in the seller’s email?

Uh huh, I’m on to your scamming ass… Mr. Mark-douchebag-McDade…

First things first: I got back in touch with Amazon via their chat interface and we had us a nice… chat… within minutes Ibuy.discount’s products were taken down…

Nice job A!

Second: Since I got nothing but time, I decided to write Douchey McDouche back…


ordering toshiba laptop

Candace Vianna <candace.vianna.writes@gmail.com> Mon, Sep 12, 2016 at 4:51 PM
To: Mark McDade <info@ibuy.discount>
This is highly unusual. Can you please explain to me why a legitimate vendor would wish to conduct a transaction outside the Amazon market place?

Your play McDouche…


ordering toshiba laptop

Mark McDade <info@ibuy.discount> Tue, Sep 13, 2016 at 2:42 AM
To: Candace Vianna <candace.vianna.writes@gmail.com>

Hello,

There is an error on Amazon, I don’t know why you can not order it but I can place your order with Amazon directly from my inventory.

Your order will be processed by Amazon directly through Amazon A to Z Guarantee Program.
The product is a new product in original package and comes with 24 months international warranty, invoice.
My listing is closed from the website, but the product is still in stock for sale.

To set up our transaction, I need the following info( because I not see this on Amazon web ):
Full Name:
Shipping Address:
City / Zip:
Product:
Price:

I will immediately send the required data to Amazon Department. They will contact you with the order and details about payment and shipping. In maximum 4 days you will receive your order.

Waiting your reply ASAP !

Waiting your reply (what does that fucking mean?) ASAP! (nice urgency)


ordering toshiba laptop

Candace Vianna <candace.vianna.writes@gmail.com> Tue, Sep 13, 2016 at 8:16 AM
To: Mark McDade <info@ibuy.discount>
Please forgive my confusion Mark. I know from the just launched status on your profile that you’re a new business, and I’m assuming that’s why you’re pricing so aggressively, but you still haven’t answered my question as to why you wish to forgo Amazon’s regular business practices. Furthermore, I don’t understand how you can place an order with Amazon on my behalf. It’s my understanding that Amazon doesn’t allow third party authorizations. It’s a safeguard to protect both buyers and sellers from fraud.

I’m still awaiting an answer…

Since I’ve received no further missives from Douchey Mark, I must assume our ardent love affair has run its natural course… The flame that burns brightest and all that rot…

It’s not surprising really, bot-love is doomed from the start…

A few things to notice about the canned responses:

Nowhere in the emails was a business name mentioned, making it possible for the bot to reuse the same messages when it re-registers under new names.

Nor was I addressed by name, even after I addressed “Mark” directly.

And most importantly my questions were never directly acknowledged.

Interestingly, even after noting the listing was no longer active (hence not on Amazon) it still tried one last time to close the deal. And did you note the reference to Amazon’s A to Z guarantee?

Amazon’s A to Z guarantee is only good if you use the OFFICIAL Amazon shopping system. They can’t protect you from your own stupidity, so if you make outside deals, you’re on your own.

Now, this is just a guess, but had I given up my info, I probably would have received an official looking Amazon email with links directing me to a fake website to complete the transaction…

This isn’t a new scam , and it seems to be focused primarily in the second hand/used marketplace. So Amazon… bubbie… you can tell how much I love ya by the amount of money I spend on you (plus you help me publish my awesome books,) please… please… please… add this simple test to your vetting process:

For vendors with no  sales history and have heavily discounted latest tech product listings in the used marketplace: Send a test message through the OFFICIAL contact seller link and see if it can be delivered… You have the technology….

Four days later… I’m still looking to buy some new techno-hotness.

amazon-com-toshiba-laptop-toshiba-2-15-to-15-9-inches-computers-tablets-computers-electronicsI’m betting this $439 deal from Netshopts{at}gmailcom is the same scam.  Funny thing though, as I wrote this, Netshopts listings suddenly evaporated… Good job A…

amazon-usa-marketplace-sellers-search-marketplace-pulse

And that’s all I’ve got to say on this.

ttfn

p.s. Hop on down to Clint Murray’s comments. He took it a step or two further. Read up on how they want to get paid.

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32 Comments Add yours

  1. Macarena says:

    I will talk to you, dammit!

    The same happened to me. I was so excited about some laptops from a vendor WITH GOOD FEEDBACK.
    But yes, just the same story. “Contact me at blabla at gmail dot com”. “I will place the order for you”. Etc.

    I didn’t realize they would send a fake Amazon email, I was wondering what they would do when I replied with my info.

    I just copied your answer and sent it to them.
    They are probably the very same person. Almost identical way of proceeding.

    THANK YOU

    Like

    1. You’re very welcome. It warms my black-hearted cockles knowing this post is helping.

      Like

  2. Anonymous says:

    we were also victimized by the amazon fraudulent transactions/sellers…looks like the sellers are also connected to amazon company…i bought an item that costs $1500 and when it arrived it was defective and used! so i told amazon that i wanted to return it… and during the process of return , we felt that they are making it hard for us to return it but we insisted because we have proof that it was defective..amazon gave us different address ( for the return label ) and they said that we should mail the item there so using the return label we paid for tracked shipping and mailed it!!! we have been following up the refund since the tracking said the the item was delivered successful! but amazon still denied the claim and did not refund us saying that they do not have enough evidence that the product was delivered!!! while in fact it was written clearly in the post office that it was delivered successfully! i even questioned amazon that i want the return to be made at their office but they said that i cannot do that, but i have to deliver in the address that looks like an address of a person ( scammed seller)! so it was amazon as well who are making these ridiculous rules to rip off the clients who are buying stuff from them. worse is taht i paid lots of money for this and i ended up being scammed by amazon!! can u tell me what to do pls?

    Like

    1. I sympathize with the problems you’ve experienced, but I believe your situation is different from the above scam. In the above scam, no product is delivered. The seller lures the buyer into a transaction outside the Amazon system and steals their money.

      Like

  3. olddronedude says:

    Jeff Bezos needs to spend less time firing rockets and more time firing Amazon employees who are asleep at the wheel and NOT keeping these bogus crook sellers off of “Shamazon.”

    I think he has lost focus and spends all of his time and attention on https://www.blueorigin.com/

    I’ve seen so many scams on “Shamazon” in the last four months that no way in the world will I buy anything from a “just launched” seller. Speaking of “just launched” I think Bezos is totally “out to lunch” on the “just launched” scams that run amok on Shamozon.

    Allowing this to happen ALL THE TIME as we now see it every time I or my wife go to Shamazon, I think Bezos is a real Bozo and I put the blame on him for NOT fixing this.

    Like

    1. While I agree there is plenty of room for improvement, name calling doesn’t solve anything. Determined crooks will always find a way. Amazon is a huge international institution (yes at this point it is an institution) that is largely automated by necessity, which leaves the good guys playing catch-up. If Amazon adopted an aggressive consumer awareness campaign, I believe it would have a huge impact. Since scams evolve so quickly, awareness is the best protection.

      Like

  4. Sadly, I fell for something like this asking for “Amazon Coins” instead of a gift card. For some strange reason (in hindsight), that made it seem more legitimate.

    Like

    1. I’m very sorry that happened to you. This scam is probably not limited to Amazon… I haven’t checked, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s happening on other sites allowing third party vendors. Not just blatant rip-offs like the one above, but also counterfeit items. I know Newegg has had issues.

      Like

  5. dixie says:

    Thank you for this site. This is how my encounter went:

    Hello,
    First of all let me apologize for the late answer.
    Let me explain you how you can buy my Gitzo GT1544T Traveler Tripod (Black)
    The item is brand new, never used, but i can’t list it as a new product due to Amazon policy, they don’t allow me to list it as a new product. The item will comes with original box and accessories and 2 year international warranty.
    If you are wondering why the price is lower than the usual,it is because we have some promotional prices . The offer lasts 7 days.
    The total price is $250.00, including all shipping costs to United States. If you want to buy it, please send me your shipping address(phone number, your complete name, street name and number, zip code and city) I will immediately send the required data to Amazon Department. They will contact you with the order and details about payment and shipping. You will have to complete the payment with them. Dispatch will be by normal UPS Services, which takes 3-5 days, depending on where in the United States you are located.
    My return policy is full refund in 21 days.
    For more information, please don’t hesitate to contact me!
    Many Thanks

    Then I responded with this:

    Thank you for your response. I will place the order through Amazon now.

    I then went back to Amazon and it was nowhere to be found.

    Like

    1. I’m glad you stuck to Amazon’s storefront system. Amazon seems to shut these guys down fairly quickly, but they automatically create a new account with a tiny change in their name… an added space or slightly different symbols.

      Like

  6. Susan bones says:

    I almost fell afoul to this scam myself. I was looking for a new laptop on Amazon and saw a dell XPS 15 at £479 (over half its usual price). The seller description said the same thing of “I can’t ship to all addresses. Please email me before placing order to check your address is valid” so I sent an email to them with my post code enquiring if they shipped to me. The sent back a reply “Thanks for your details. We have contacted Amazon and they will send an invoice for your purchase in the next few hours”
    Obviously I had never agreed to a purchase and I would never make a purchase via email rather than amazons official web page so I spammed the invoice the moment it arrived. I’m glad I didn’t accidental go through with this and lose that much money!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad as well. It seems as soon as Amazon shuts them down–and they do so quickly when they are made aware–another account pops up almost immediately. Perhaps all seller accounts and changes to seller accounts should be subjected to human review before they go live, but that’s probably a bigger task than I realize.

      Like

  7. Clint Murray says:

    Confirming what another has posted. I found this on another site. They tell you to buy an Amazon gift card, and once you give them the number they will ship the item to you. I feel like playing along, sending phony name and address and phony card number. If they reply there is a mistake, I will say sorry, I got one number wrong, and so on.

    The biggest mystery to me is how they are able to keep listing their scam at Amazon. Amazon need to do a better job policing their vendors.

    Like

    1. I think Amazon is doing the best they can. There are 10s of 1000s of legitimate vendors on Amazon, and the bad ones aren’t up for long. If they can get you communicating with them privately, the scam moves forward even after Amazon removes them.

      Like

      1. Clint Murray says:

        I checked the camera’s listing again today. It is back, this time with slightly higher price, different company, different email. I sent them and email and got exactly the same response, with same name, Christine Sierko. I responded with my fake information and soon had this reply: Hi, Right now we will place your order at Amazon, they will confirm the order and guide you through the payment process soon. Meantime we will prepare the item for shipping and will be able to provide a tracking number after payment is sent to Amazon. Kindest regards!

        It will be interesting to see how the next step goes. They will probably instruct me to buy an Amazon gift card, but the transaction at Amazon won’t go through and they will say something like sorry for the error. Give us the number and we will complete the transaction for you.

        Like

      2. I think that’s a safe assumption. I wonder if the FTC could trace the email headers? I’ll have to check into that.

        Like

      3. Clint Murray says:

        I got the reply, and was astounded how realistic it looked, like a confirmation email from Amazon, logo and all, with estimated delivery date. They instruct you to purchase an Amazon gift card and give a link to the purchase. Obviously you will have to buy a legitimate card, so this link will be real.

        After the instruction of how to do it they advise you, “Do Not Redeem or verify Amazon Gift Cards (code)- Must To Be Unused.” Notice the grammatical error, must to be. They are obviously not in U.S. There was another glaring error in the email. Where they listed my address, they followed it with United State, not States. If they are in U.S. like they say they are, why even include the country name? It’s unnecessary. None of my Amazon confirmations have United States in the address unless it’s a foreign seller.

        To complete the transaction they tell you to reply to this email with the gift code, the amount, and a screenshot of the card. That does not make sense because if the email truly was from Amazon there wouldn’t be any point in sending them information they already had. I hope that thought occurs to anyone who unknowingly reaches this stage of the transaction.

        So far I am just jerking them around, so will have to think of a reply to keep them salivating. I think I will pretend to not be technically fluent.

        Like

      4. I wonder if that tactic will get you communicating with a live person.

        Like

      5. Clint Murray says:

        Another thing I noticed in the email is that they will notify you when dispatched. In the U.S. Amazon does not use dispatched; they would say shipped. Dispatched is European or Asian.

        Like

      6. I’ll post an update referring readers to your comments.

        Like

  8. Clint Murray says:

    It doesn’t take long to realize this “vendor” is a scam. I saw a camera I liked at a good price, but they didn’t include enough details. There are two versions of the product, one that is just the body and the other one with some expensive accessories. I emailed a question to them about what was included in the box. I got exactly the same replies as you. After the second one I replied that that I didn’t realize they weren’t fluent in English, but they had not answered the question I asked. Just messing with them by now, of course. I’m not sure that’s effective if it’s a bot I’m replying to. It could be a bot, and probably is, programmed with a delay to give you more time to worry that maybe someone else might snap up this bargain before you can close the deal for the only one they have left. Of course the bot can’t know that you are asking a question about the product. It is programmed to think you contacted them because you are having a problem ordering. In my case it was a Christine Sierko, who by a remarkable coincidence was also moving to Europe, with her husband.

    Like

    1. And here I thought what McDouche-bot and I had was special… It’s most likely a waste of time trying to mess with them. They’re playing a numbers game. It’s probably all automated, so I doubt they’d even notice.

      Like

  9. EILEEN DELIA says:

    I can send you a copy of the email MARK sent to me if you email me. Hope this helps and thank you for taking the time to alert everyone.
    Eileen

    Like

    1. Hey Eileen, I’m not sure what I’d do with that. The best thing you can do is contact Amazon when ever you encounter a seller violating Amazon’s TOS asking for preorder contact at http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/reports/contact-us. Category: violation of rules.

      Like

  10. I’ve dealt with so many Chinese sellers being an amazon top reviewer I thought he sounded Chinese with his slightly nonsensical English! lol. Wow, what a scam to be a part of. I guess it’s good I’m ultra cautious when it comes to buying from marketplace sellers on amazon. I always go through seller feedback to check if there is any bad feedback and I tend to only buy simple (ie cheap) stuff from new sellers. Interesting thing you can’t trust seller feedback either. Some sellers have fake feedback. If you check through it long enough you’ll notice the same style of message left, sometimes by the same names again and again.
    Using the amazon marketplace can be a bit of a gamble but I’ve not had any serious trouble in the past. But the seller putting in the order through amazon rather than the customer, or not being able to list it as new…ridiculous! 🙂

    Like

    1. That’s a huge red flag. What seller wants to risk having money yanked from their account because of a fraudulent charge. I doubt these scams are limited to Asia, crooks are everywhere. Hopefully, this post will save some folks some grief. Take care C

      Liked by 1 person

      1. EILEEN DELIA says:

        i was looking for a generator and found Mark. same deal, great price him and wife moving to England. Email said i should buy a $500 Amazon card and send him the #( right). i called Amazon and then checked his name and BANG he is a scammer!!
        the invoice was so good, it looked like my Amazon invoices.
        Eileen

        Like

      2. Eileen, I glad you checked with Amazon before you acted because this seems to be an on going problem. And as easy it is to call on Amazon to do a better job policing and go on our merry way, I think they need our help; sort of like the police need community watch volunteers. Anytime we come across vendors asking for pre-order contact and deals too good to be true, we should contact Amazon for confirmation, not just to protect ourselves, but also our fellow shoppers; I know I am. Remember the A to Z guarantee is only good if the entire process is done through official channels. Best of luck, Candace 🙂

        Like

  11. Anonymous says:

    I almost bought something from him! I received the exact two same emails from this bot. Looks like he doesn’t have a 3rd email response though. If it’s too good to be true, don’t trust it!

    Like

    1. And here I thought what McDouche and I had was special… I feel so used. I’m glad you didn’t get fleeced. Thanks for sharing. Take care.

      Like

  12. Anonymous says:

    Yes, same email for a different product. from Mark McDade..
    ” I will contact Amazon to start a transaction for us,” in the seller’s email. Not sure whether he/she/they duped anyone yet.. thought I will add my “experience” here as well. Came across this post via search.

    Like

    1. I think it’s just a numbers game. They use several almost identical names… adding a space or symbol or placing “at” between different brackets. A certain number of people will bite… I so wanted to… Damn you Techno-thrall.

      Like

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