A week ago, I listed item for auction on ebay. It did fairly well considering the economy and the time of year. After the auction closed, I sent an email to the bidder with payment instructions and thought it was a done deal. About 4 hours later, I received an email from ebay stating, “ebay Listing Cancelled – Results Null and Void”.
Apparently, someone hijacked the winning bidder’s user ID and made unauthorized bids on numerous items (including my auction). My auction was completely removed from ebay’s site, leaving me no means to even contact the 2nd highest bidder. Ebay apologized for the inconvenience and said that I would have to completely relist my item.
It’s a good thing that I wasn’t counting on that money to buy holiday gifts because this would leave me little time to run another seven-day auction and wait for payment. The biggest inconvenience is that if I were to immediately relist my item, all the people who bookmarked or bid on it are going to wonder why it’s being relisted. Was the item a fake? Was there a scam? What caused the winning bidder to back out? Immediately relisting my rare and expensive item is a guarantee for suspicion and less money at auction close. Now I’m left to sit and wait several months for the dust to settle before I consider offering my item on ebay again.
As irritating as this situation was, it doesn’t compare to what happened to me when I checked my email the following night. My email inbox contained 336 new messages regarding ebay auctions I won but never bid on! Now my ebay account had been hijacked. It appeared that ebay was aware of the situation because the auctions had been canceled and emails from ebay had been sent to both seller and bidder.
I checked my ebay account and it did not appear that any of my personal or financial information had been compromised. To be on the safe side, I contacted my credit card providers to make sure they are on the alert for any suspicious activity. I also changed all my email and e-commerce related passwords. Lastly, I sent an email to ebay informing them of my situation.
More than 24 hrs passed without any response from ebay, and I kept receiving emails from sellers regarding the auctions I never bid on. I was finally able to contact ebay via online chat and they appeared to not be aware of my situation. After an hour of explaining my predicament, I was reassured by ebay support staff that the problem has been taken care of.
I am still receiving emails requesting payment from the sellers and my fingers are crossed that I do not receive negative feedback(s) over this!
I mentioned my bad luck to Mike Garber, a fellow WorthPoint vinyl record Worthologist and ebay Power Seller, and he mentioned that he noticed this exact problem being discussed on a few web boards. Sounds like a mess to me.