Falling victim to a $1,500 lens scam on Amazon

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by fractal, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. fractal

    fractal TalkEmount Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jun 17, 2014
    Southeastern PA
    Chris
    I Fell Victim to a $1,500 Used Camera Lens Scam on Amazon


    snipit...

    I’ve been ordering used lenses for years and have never had a problem with any purchases. That is, until now. I recently ordered a $1,500 used camera lens from Amazon. The lens never showed up, and Amazon is refusing to return my money because they claim the tracking number shows that it was delivered to my address.
     
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  2. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur Subscribing Member

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    Thanks for the heads-up. I've had one experience with someone who sold an FE 2.8/35 via Amazon which turned out to be a scam too, but my payment was returned fortunately. For me personally that ended making any expensive purchases from other sellers than Amazon itself; for a € 20 book I'll just take the risk.
     
  3. Golfhacker27

    Golfhacker27 TalkEmount Regular

    48
    May 15, 2016
    I live in a rural area of a third world country (Normandy, France, which is pretty third world for shopping :) and rely a LOT on Amazon to keep me supplied.
    However, I am careful to only select products sold directly by Amazon, unless it is a seller with a good track record and lots of good feedback.
    Amazon takes little or no interest in regulating third party sellers, and even less interest in intervening in cases of dispute or problems.
    I guess that buyers automatically assume that Amazon covers all products (in terms of garantee and dispute resolution) in the same way. Not so. Their third party sellers market is an unregulated mess. Very much a case of buyers be very aware and cautious.
     
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  4. roundball

    roundball TalkEmount Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 8, 2013
    USA
    Thanks for posting this...and I've noticed more and more sellers on Amazon lately that are simply listed there...using Amazon like a store front...similar to EBay.
    Amazon has probably gotten too big for its original britches now...no longer worried about attracting / building a customer base, etc.
     
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  5. AlwaysOnAuto

    AlwaysOnAuto TalkEmount All-Pro

    Feb 17, 2015
    Since they used USPS for delivery, I'd get in touch with your postmaster as this is a federal offense (mail fraud). I don't see how Amazon can say it was delivered to your address when it wasn't even your address it was sent to in the first place.
     
  6. fractal

    fractal TalkEmount Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jun 17, 2014
    Southeastern PA
    Chris
    Just to be clear. This did not happen to me, I'm just sharing an article I read.

    Going through the comments after the article, it appear Amazon is significantly behind Ebay in regards to buyer protection.

    It also lends credence to paying a bit more and buying from a reputable used dealer like KEH or mpb.com.
     
  7. roundball

    roundball TalkEmount Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 8, 2013
    USA
    Also a good reminder that for any expensive item, don't even risk trusting it to be delivered to your door...and/or not stolen off your porch.
    Just set the shipping up to "Hold at PO for PickUp / Signature Required".
     
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  8. bdbits

    bdbits TalkEmount Top Veteran

    997
    Sep 10, 2015
    Bob
    I will not order anything of significant value off Amazon that is not sold directly by them or by someone I know and trust. There are too many shady-looking sellers I've never heard of there. And there are many items where Amazon is nothing more than a storefront, as mentioned. There have been news articles where in some cases, the items are direct ripoffs of popular products by third-world IP thieves, and Amazon has shown no willingness to do anything about it. They have become too big and arrogant.

    I have bought some used items off of ebay, and from keh.com. Thus far, I find buying and selling with established members on communities like this one generally has been the best experience. If it is someone engaged with the site, I think they are unlikely to want to ruin their reputation and so unlikely to be scamming. So far, that has worked out.

    Caveat emptor. Or buy from keh.com or the used departments from established vendors.
     
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  9. AlwaysOnAuto

    AlwaysOnAuto TalkEmount All-Pro

    Feb 17, 2015
    Glad to hear it didn't happen to you Chris.
     
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  10. WNG

    WNG TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2014
    Arrid Zone-A, USA
    Will
    This is one reason why I stick with ebay for such purchases. Their Buyer's Protection has saved me numerous times. Amazon doesn't get involved with their 3rd party vendors.
     
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  11. JonathanF2

    JonathanF2 TalkEmount Veteran

    415
    Aug 16, 2014
    Los Angeles, USA
    I have no issues with Amazon. I only order from Amazon direct or fulfilled by Amazon via third party. If it's something I really want, then I'll buy from any of the legit store fronts or even private sellers with a good feedback record (though for smaller priced items).
     
  12. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave

    Well that sucks.

    I can see Amazon's point, the tracking says it was delivered, but we have to trust you that it was not. Unfortunately, mail theft is becoming all too prevalent. A lot of us are using exterior cameras to keep an eye on stuff.

    You might ask around with your neighbors, I've had a few misdelivered packages this year.
     
  13. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave

    I too have had a couple of complaints with eBay purchases over the years that were not resolved by the seller and eBay took care of it.
     
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  14. isa

    isa TalkEmount Regular

    34
    Apr 14, 2017
    I am surprised.. I had it all backwards.. I thought amazon would protect the buyer over ebay. I have only bought one used lens from amazon and thank goodness there was no problem. I have bought one used from ebay and had good luck. on the other hand I have bought numerous small inexpensive items from ebay that have not been what they were advertised even though the seller was rated high. I have always hated ebay.. guess I should rethink this!
     
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  15. msullivan

    msullivan TalkEmount Regular Subscribing Member

    160
    Jan 11, 2013
    Phoenix AZ
    Amazon is pretty good about resolving problems if the item is defective. I once received an NEX 6 stuck in an A6300 box. They accepted the return without question and immediately refunded the money. I sympathize with both sides in the present case. You have a right to be upset if an item is marked as delivered but you do not have it. However, what is the seller to do? They use tracking to insure that items are delivered. If the tracking service says it has been delivered then you have to find some way to convince them that it has not arrived. Proving a negative is usually impossible. Life is complex. There is no guarantee of fairness.
     
  16. bdbits

    bdbits TalkEmount Top Veteran

    997
    Sep 10, 2015
    Bob
    In this particular case, the seller believes they were intentionally defrauded, not that a mistake was made. The evidence seems to back that up, but Amazon does not seem willing to even look at it beyond saying something was delivered. In my experience, if it was an item Amazon sold and/or fulfilled, returns are really not an issue.

    Ebay is more proactive and tends to side with the buyer, and the process is more cumbersome because ebay is just acting as a middleman. So they try to get it resolved with the seller first. But if there really is a problem, they will take care of it.
     
  17. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave

    The early days of eBay were a bit sketchy, but they really have put a lot of effort into making a lot better. I lot of that came when they integrated PayPal into the process.

    If a seller does not offer PayPal, I don't buy.
     
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  18. roundball

    roundball TalkEmount Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 8, 2013
    USA
    For me it's PayPal...plus the following:
    The listing must be one that has the 'Buyer Protection' feature;
    The listing must have a no questions asked return policy;
     
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  19. Thom S

    Thom S TalkEmount Regular

    33
    Mar 22, 2017
    Alaska
    I ordered a Techart Pro adapter through Amazon and sold by Adorama. It was delivered yesterday. The Techart Pro box was empty! I contacted Amazon and they responded immediately. Amazon contacted Adorama and I am waiting for a response. Amazon has been great to work with in the past. I will post the outcome once it is resolved.
     
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  20. bdbits

    bdbits TalkEmount Top Veteran

    997
    Sep 10, 2015
    Bob
    Thom: Adorama is pretty good about fixing problems. I think everything will work out for you.

    PayPal - I've actually had some problems with PayPal, when it was linked to my bank account. When it is linked, funds can flow directly in/out of your bank account, which requires ACH transfers to resolve in the event of a problem. And they are very slow to fix problems. Very annoying. So now my PayPal is just a pass-through to my credit card for purchases, and I only sell items via PayPal if the incoming funds will be used on future purchases.
     
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