Ebay and PayPal are both refusing to protect sellers on its platform against an increasingly aggressive and difficult to detect account take over fraud PayPal scam, Tamebay, an online publication reporting on marketplaces, reported earlier this week. In one case, a man is reported to have lost as much as 54,000 British Pounds Sterling.
Fraudsters execute the scam by compromising an eBay sellers account that accepts PayPal payments, creating a new PayPal identity with a similar email to the compromised account’s, and then changing the eBay’s payment address to the fraudulent account. The target is usually a low-cost item with high sales volume, increasing the chance the seller will not notice payments to their PayPal account ceased.
PayPal & Ebay Play the Blame Game
Unfortunately, neither PayPal nor eBay are willing to take responsibility. Each platform places the blame and responsibility for enabling the scam on the other party. PayPal claims that its role as a middle man payment processor means it bears no responsibility for transactions on eBay’s eCommerce platform.
“I would suggest you push a bit harder on eBay, the fraud happened on their site (you can’t add a PayPal email address to an eBay listing via PayPal, it has to be done with eBay), regardless of the bank that processed the funds,” PayPal said in a statement. “PayPal process the funds according to what email address we’re told to send the funds to by eBay.”
For its part, eBay insists that it does not handle any money, which leaves it powerless to provide any reimbursement or liability. It claims that power rests with PayPal, the platform that executes the transfers between the buyer and the fraduster’s fake seller account.
“I would advise you to insist on pursuing PayPal as they are the people who hold control of the money. eBay never handle transactions,” eBay’s statement said
Despite the fact that this fraud has been occurring for several years now, it appears neither company is in any hurry to take responsibility or step in to protect merchants against fraud.