Discussion in 'Stolen Radios, Scams and Rip-Offs' started by W6GQ, Feb 8, 2011.

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  1. W6GQ

    W6GQ Swap Meet Moderator QRZ Page

    This has become a hot topic.

    Fred, AA7BQ, the owner of QRZ, provided me the following information to help us with these scammers.

    This thread is allowed comments so we can all learn and help each other.

    No feedback though.

    2. Be extremely wary of overseas sales. It's almost a "forget it" situation.
    4. Use PayPal. They are trustworthy and are well worth the percentage they charge in the long run.
    5. ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS Search the QRZ forum and GOOGLE the person's call sign and email address you are coresponding with.
    6. If you would rather keep your email address private, use a PM". Using a PM
      does mean that the user has a QRZ account, but not necessarily a callsign. When dealing with someone, you want as much information about them as possible. After a person gets the initial PM, then continue the conversation via email. If a person won't communicate with with a valid email address, I don't deal with them. SEE NUMBER 5 ABOVE
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011
  2. AG7LB

    AG7LB Ham Member QRZ Page

    We have been warned about this alot here on QRZ. I don't know why some people do not heed the warnings?
    I suppose they have the attitude of "that happens to other people but not me."YEAH, right.
  3. KD4E

    KD4E Ham Member QRZ Page

    Receiving money via Western Union is OK, so long as a shipping address is USA or Canada, and it is for the correct selling price plus shipping (no rebates to the buyer or any other nonsense).

    Many legitimate Hams in other countries use Western Union to send cash to buy gear from USA Hams and have arrangements with friends and relatives here to get the gear to them. Western Union is also a favorite of college students when they have wasted important funds on dumb stuff and desperately need mommy and daddy to send more ... or they need bail money.

    73, doc KD4E
  4. W6GQ

    W6GQ Swap Meet Moderator QRZ Page

    There is no buyer protection using western union,

    That is what this is about.

    See number 3 in the starter post above

  5. N7AXL

    N7AXL Ham Member QRZ Page

    On Feb 2nd I posted the sale of my TEKTRONICS SOPE for 1.000.-$. Got an email from THOMASBRUCE98@GMAIL.COM who offered to send his "shipping agent" with a $4.000.- check to pic up the scope and I could cash it and send the remaining funds via WESTERN UNION to his shipping agent.???!!?? He wanted full name, address, Phone Nr. and asked me to take the post off QRZ.COM. I mailed him that this would be money laundry and never heard from the guy again. I wanted to contact QRZ.COM about this just when I read this post. THANK YOU !! I hope more Hams read about this!
    73 Axel, N7AXL +++
    P.S. the guy never answered my question about his call and location.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011
  6. WW7F

    WW7F Guest

    I am glad some have mentioned western union has no protection from losses, plus another good reason is the exhorbitant fees they charge for a simple money transfer, was $35 I think for $300 to send it:( I ran like hell when they said $35 bucks and with no protection is not worth the risk.
    USPO IMO is the only way to go, paypal has its backfires as well,shady vendors,sellers sometimes take the money back or extra for no good reason.
    I know on other sites on yahoo the forums have become rife with scammers and spammers, seems like some of those are creeping in here as well.
    Without being unfair to unlicensed people who are trying to get their license or those unliicensed members there should be some means to make sure those who are on forum should be there and not some fake or stolen email adddy.
    Verification is best way but if they refuse then no deal:) 73 folks, Michelle
  7. N5AL

    N5AL Ham Member QRZ Page


    Your "scammer" was hoping that you would deposit his $4000 check and think that it had cleared your bank when you saw the funds quickly become available in your bank account. You would then send him the Tek scope and refund him the $3000 difference.

    But, banks are required to make funds available for your withdrawal within a few days, and it could take weeks for an international check to actually clear their processing. So, weeks later, when your bank eventually discovers that the scammer's check is fake, they would remove the $4000 they had made available in your account. The net result: you never actually received the $4000, but you handed the scammer $3000 real dollars along with your Tek scope!

    BTW, the same thing can happen with money orders. The only way to avoid it is to check with your bank that the check (or money order) has actually cleared their processing before sending any goods (or money refunds) to the buyer. Just because a deposit appears on the bank ATM screen DOESN'T mean that the money is securely in your account!

    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011
  8. N5AL

    N5AL Ham Member QRZ Page

    For international transactions, they could make money on both ends of the transaction: $35 dollars out of your wallet, and with a bad foreign currency exchange rate - reduced payment to the recipient.
  9. N3QQ

    N3QQ Ham Member QRZ Page


    Keyword is "connections". I had a similar paypal transaction/chargeback from say S. W. European Country. I promissed person on another end friends will stop by to p/up unpaid item. Got real $ same day. On another hand do not be afraid of intl sales, most of them are OK. Use rules posted above and your judgement. 73, Yuri N3QQ
  10. W0BTU

    W0BTU Ham Member QRZ Page

    This is all great advice. And I'm glad to see the PayPal recommendation. There has been so much unwarranted "PayPal bashing" here, and this is refreshing. (See http://forums2.qrz.com/showthread.php?283245-PAYPAL-why-I-don-t-use-it, starting with post #4.)
  11. G4ILO

    G4ILO Ham Member QRZ Page

    I agree. There are only two ways I would accept payment for anything. PayPal and having the buyer use his internet banking to transfer the money direct into my bank account.

    I am always suspicious of foreign buyers. The cost of shipping internationally, insured to the appropriate value, is so great that it doesn't make sense for most private sales. Plus, there's tons of paperwork. It's just not worth the hassle. I'm never in that much of a hurry, and there will always be a home-based buyer eventually.
  12. KA9NDQ

    KA9NDQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    PayPal is OK. I really don't like PayPal, but it is safe. The reasons I don't like PayPal are many, but it is not because they are not secure.

    On Ebay, there is PayPal Buyer protection. But for sales outside of Ebay, the buyer protection is nothing. On Ebay, they withhold paying the buyer until you post feedback, or a certain number of days has gone by. So PayPal can refund your money as they are still holding it. Ebay did this because Sellers were ripping folks off.

    But outside of Ebay, a seller has access to the funds right away. Once they have the cash out of PayPal, PayPal can do nothing. They certainly will not give you any money unless they first can get it from the seller. So don't feel too comfy about "Buyer Protection" - you are just whistling in the dark.

    In fact, I have seen scams where the PayPal Buyer Protection is cited as the reason for you to feel safe: "Sure, the deal seems too good to be true, but you are protected by PayPal Buyer Protection". The most PayPal can do for you is demand a refund from the seller. If the seller has enough cash in his PayPal account, then PayPal will refund whether the seller likes it or not. But, and this a big problem, a crooked seller will not let money accumulate in their PayPal account and they will take it out of any bank accounts that PayPal has access to. So the crook is ahead of the game and he gets to use the Buyer Protection Program to make you feel safe and drop your guard.

    Hams are notoriously cheap. There are some here who get their panties all knotted up because they need to pay a couple of bucks to PayPal for processing. If you are so cheap that you find the fees untenable then don't try to sell your stuff on the internet. Frugal is commendable. Cheap to the point of complaining about small fees that allow you to sell across great distances is not commendable.

    I hate PayPal, but I use them, and I don't complain about the fees. Again, sell locally if PayPal is an issue for you.

    The best way to ensure that your ham gear is not stolen from you by a con man is to make sure that the address that you are shipping to is the address listed in QRZ callsign database. My father was a ham and I have been a ham since the 70s. I have been around hams nearly all of my life. We are many things, but we are not dishonest with each other. While there are a few crooked hams, it is rare. Really rare. If you are shipping to an address in the database then you have reason to feel safe.

    When I buy something from a seller who is unwilling to accept PayPal, I do not do a transfer to the bank account. Did you know that by giving someone your bank account number, you are authorizing them to withdraw? I would give my Social Security Number before I would disclose my bank account numbers. And I don't give out the social security either.

    Instead, I use my banks Online check service. I go online, and have the bank issue the check and mail it. Some banks charge for this, some don't. The seller feels pretty safe with the check because it was issued from a bank. I do not have to disclose my account info to do this, it is free (at my bank anyway), and it is secure.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011
  13. 9A3TA

    9A3TA Ham Member QRZ Page

    ??? Be extremely wary of overseas sales. It's almost a "forget it" situation.???

    !!! It is 21st century. It is so sad to read that words in ham area. What kind of ham spirit is that? !!!

    Best regards from Croatia Europe 9A3TA Dado
  14. K8ERV

    K8ERV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Geeze, now you went and ruint my business.

    I may have to get an honest job. Bummer!

    TOM K8ERV Montrose Colo
  15. KI0MX

    KI0MX Ham Member QRZ Page

    The reasons are many. Most replies from "overseas" is a bogus inquiry. I almost fell for this once, myself, someone wanting to send 4 times the amount in a western union moneygram. And I was to ship the item to a US address....blah blah blah. I follow "No Sales Outside The US......PERIOD". If a foregin ham operator wishes to make the purchase, make arrangements for US dollars themselves. I won't deal with foreign ops, sorry. The insurance/shipping costs are indeed prohibitive, if not equal to the value of said item sold. Peace. Ed.
  16. 9A3TA

    9A3TA Ham Member QRZ Page

    ??? I won't deal with foreign ops, sorry. ???

    OK, so we overseas can start new policy: No QSL cards for USA amateurs. It is bad return ratio, so we will stop sending our cards. Sorry.

    Sounds OK?

    My point is: your words here sounds rude. Period. Read ham spirit. Period. Or try some other hoby?
  17. W1KU

    W1KU Ham Member QRZ Page

    You realize that any check (online or not, paper or electronic) drawing on your account contains your personal account number and the bank's routing number, right? You should be very careful of who you send a check to, or if you must send checks to questionable people, maintain a separate checking account with a low balance.


    If you really want to keep your account info out of someone's hands, your best bet is to use a postal money order, a cashier's or teller check from your bank (drawn on the bank's funds not yours, so your account number is not on the check), or, for what it's worth, paypal.

    If your bank's "online check service" sends out cashiers/teller checks, then you're achieving your goal. If it just sends a check that draws on your account, you're not.

  18. W2IBC

    W2IBC Ham Member QRZ Page

    i cant stand paypal.

    I use only US postal money order period.
  19. K5ROX

    K5ROX Ham Member QRZ Page

    PayPal ...... If you like it your havent read and understood there "Fuzzy and Warm" terms.

    USPS MO, CASH it then ship it at the same place your already standing!
  20. AD7N

    AD7N Ham Member QRZ Page

    INSIST on a phone conversation to shoot the breeze, talk about the item, etc. for at least a minute or two.

    If they won't talk with you on the phone, they're probably skiddish, which is a HUGE red flag!
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011
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