Scam / Security

The Short Story of an eBay Scam.. A Bad One

. 4 min read . Written by Nautilus
The Short Story of an eBay Scam.. A Bad One

This morning, I woke up as usual, went to the park, bought some USBs from my good ol’ buddy Sabu, and then checked my eBay messages.

Surely enough, there was someone who wanted to deal offsite to buy an {account} that I’m selling. If you’ve ever watched the movie hackers then you’re aware that they use names like “Acid Burn” and “Crash Override”. So, immediate alarm bells went off in my head the second I saw this guy was called “Dark Angel”.

This means I’m either going to sell my item offsite and avoid the disgusting seller fees, or Mr. Angel is going to attempt to scam me. So it’s about 8:00 AM and I’m reading this message:

Well, first of all.. There are no codes, it’s an account. My best educated guess is that Angel is sending out these messages to anything he’s interested in, and hoping he at least gets one code. I’m sure this would work on eBay accounts that deal with thousands of transactions - if he didn't attempt to take it off site.

So, in my head right now I’m thinking Dark Angel is a scammer… Sweet.

So, I respond with my Discord information and we agree to take the deal offsite. Although this isn’t endorsed by eBay, and I’m pretty sure is a violation of their TOS, it’s very common. Blacklisted offsite contact words only include words such as “email” and “skype” so “discord” is fine and passes the strict eBay blacklist. As we all know, breaching the TOS is against the law, and nobody does it other than black hat hackers. Those who lie about their age shall be punished.

The elaborate scam

So we have now exchanged Discord information. My palms are sweaty, knees weak, and arms are heavy. Dark Angel starts off the conversation, and we jump right into business:

So he’s wrong again. There were other games on the account which was made very clear in the description. This only backs up my initial thought that he is copying and pasting this message to multiple accounts. So, we agree on a price, and he says:

Wait a minute.. Am I not going to be scammed? Is he going to send me the money and I’ll have to appeal a dispute with Discord chat logs in a few weeks? For a few minutes, I actually had faith in Mr. Angel.. But then I receive this email:

So Mr. Angel has sent me a PayPal invoice. Notice how it says “View and Pay Invoice”, obviously Dark Angel hopes I don't know how invoices work. He seems to believe that I owe him money and the account. So, he messages me back in chat with my name on PayPal, something which can be obtained by sending an invoice to an email on PayPal. Side note: I’m not too sure about my feelings on that.

Anyways, life goes on. I am, sitting in my chair playing Pokemon, hoping that Angel sends me the money, rather than an invoice for $400. It appeals to my sense of humor that I could have sent him $400 and the account details. But that's too large of a loss for minimal entertainment.

15 minutes pass and I’m still sitting there, very confused. When I finally get another notification from Mr. Angel:

Wait.. That’s it? If you’ve never used Discord before then it’s important that you know — the red text means he blocked me. So, his scam was just sending an invoice to me for the amount I was asking for, and then telling me that he’d paid for it.

Wat

I’m still at a loss for words, which is why I’m writing this post. I’ve never seen someone use such a bizarre scam. I did get a PayPal notification on my phone that “Dark Angel sent you an invoice” and I’m sure if someone wasn’t paying enough attention, they might have sent the information over without looking into the situation deeper.

I think that it's important to state that scammers will continue to scam no matter how poor it is - if the scam works once. I do believe that Dark Angel has profited off of this scam before, and all it takes is a small lapse of judgment.