Thursday, November 03, 2005

eBay buying tips

At Sherlock Investigations we spend a lot of time buying things on eBay. The stuff we buy on eBay is counterfeit merchandise, and most of it comes from China. Our clients want to know who is selling this stuff so that they can shut them down for trade mark infringement. American companies lose billions of dollars a year because of counterfeit merchandise.

As frequent buyers on eBay, who then track down the real identities of the sellers, we know how hard it is to find out who you're really dealing with. We also get clients who send a lot of money to strangers for everything from Rolex watches to Harley Davidson motorcylces, never to receive their merchandise.

One guy thought that he was getting a terrific bargain on eBay when he saw a $10K Rolex watch listed for $1900. I hate to say it, because it's so old and tired, but still true: If it looks too good to be true... Lucky for him, we identified and found the seller.

In another case concerning a Harley, we got our client's $7500 back for a non-existent motorcycle he bought, but only after we had the seller arrested and jailed.

Here's my number one rule for buying on eBay: Never pay more for anything on eBay than you can afford to lose.

If you'd like to know more about counterfeit merchandise, visit the International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition web site at

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