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Partially cycling related.... fake money orders(11 posts)

Partially cycling related.... fake money ordersfunknuggets
Jun 11, 2003 2:20 PM
I have heard and seen a lot about these things. As a somewhat routine poster in the rbrclassifieds for assorted items for sale, I often get people who want to pay by money order. There was recently a report of some local frauds that got all kinds of stuff off ebay and local businesses with like $16K in fake money orders. Luckily I have never been scammed, but realize the opportunity is there. How can I protect myself, and do I use them like a check and wait for it to "clear" before sending the goods?

Im potentially selling some pedals right now and want to Cover my A$$, you know?

Jun 11, 2003 2:55 PM
Specify "US Postal Money Order" or "cashier's check drawn on US bank."

Also, could take it to a bank to check it out before shipping.

cashier's checks easily forgedgcbgcb
Jun 11, 2003 7:03 PM
and they will be returned to your bank after you have shipped, and you will not be happy. If someone is willing to send you a cashier's check, they should be willing to wire the money to your bank instead.
re: Partially cycling related.... fake money ordersTNSquared
Jun 11, 2003 3:05 PM
I have no experience with Ebay, but I do know a bit about check fraud, and that's tough.

If you want to be completely safe, I'd insist on a wire transfer to your bank. There are many types of claims that could originate from the fraudulent use of money orders, and the fact that the money order intially clears the paying bank does not preclude all those claims. Likewise, calling the paying bank to see if the item is "good" does not preclude claims.

If you deposit the money order/check with your bank, and it is returned for whatever reason, your account will probably be be charged for the amount of the money order plus a service fee. This could take weeks to happen, and I don't know how long you could hold the merchandise. Certified cashier's check might be a little safer than a money order, since a cashier's check in theory represents "guaranteed" funds, but does not make you completely safe.

On the other hand, the purchaser might be leery of sending a wire without prior guarantee of shipment, so I don't know how you would work that out.

One other option - if the money order or cashiers check is drawn on a bank with a location in your area, just present it in person to be cashed. Assuming they honor it, then they probably don't have any recourse against you if the check ended up being fraudulent, (unless, of course, you're the fraudster! :0) ) If they don't honor the item, then you know not to ship the merchandise.

Hope that helps
TN, are you in the US?53T
Jun 12, 2003 11:35 AM
I don't know where you live, but here in the Northeast a wire transfer costs $50. Out of the question for buying used pedals.

Another thing, if I bring a personal check from Fleet into a Fleet branch and ask them to cash it, they will ask me for my account number. No account, no cash. If I do have an account, I'll get a hold on the equivelent funds until the check clears. It doesn't make scense that a bank won't cash its own check, but that's the way it works.

Wher do you live that has banks that provide customer service? BTW, the HMO's up here are all great, unlike what I read in the papers about other areas of the country.
Yes I am....TNSquared
Jun 12, 2003 1:12 PM
Appropriately enough, in TN. And you're right, the NE is a completely different market, which I neglected to take into consideration. You're pretty much stuck in the check fraud capital of the US (along with CA) and the banks there have reacted - unfortunately that's why you can't cash a check without an account.

Most banks in the SE region will cash their own check for a non-customer, if you are willing to provide a thumbprint on the check as means of identification. Still a large nuisance (and to many a privacy issue) but after losing about $62 million to check fraud in 2001, banks have been forced to take certain steps.

However, a $50 wire transfer fee is outrageous, definitely not worth it for a pedal purchase - maybe a complete bike.
How about using PayPal? nmpurplepaul
Jun 11, 2003 3:12 PM
How about using PayPal? nmB2
Jun 11, 2003 6:28 PM
Unless you're shipping to a confirmed address in the US there are no guarantees with Paypal. Paypal accounts get "hijacked" fairly often - beware. From what I can gather, there is no way to tell if a person has a "confirmed" address until they transfer the money and just because the money ended up in your bank account doesn't mean that Paypal can't take it back (if the transaction was fruadulent).

I couldn't find out if my own address was "confirmed" without emailing Paypal and asking!

How do they "hijack"?Qubeley
Jun 11, 2003 6:54 PM
Can you explain what do you mean by "hijacked"? Steal ID and password?
I am no expert of computer at all. My question is: If I never use any computer but my own, and nobody ever touch my computer. Can my ID and password still be stolen?
How do they "hijack"?B2
Jun 11, 2003 7:01 PM
I don't know enough about how the Username and passwords are acquired, but I can tell you from first hand experience that payments can be made to your account from another persons account, where the other person is unaware of the transaction until Paypal sends them the email notifying them of the transfer.

If you didn't ship to a Paypal "confirmed" address or you shipped the item to an address outside the US, Paypal will "reverse" the transaction and you're out the $. If you ship to a confirmed address in the US, Paypal takes responsibility and you keep the $.

re:wire moneycxer
Jun 12, 2003 11:49 AM
The statement that it costs $50 to wire money is odd. Not saying it isn't true but it sure doesn't make sense.

You can Western Union the money for a nominal fee. My bank gives me 5 free wire transfers and $1.50 for each transfer after that. But since my money is in the bank, I just ask and they comp all the fees.