What Happens To Fake Flash Memory USB Pen Sticks PayPal Demands You Send Back To The eBay Seller?

Posted on October 11, 2009 by


So you bought a fake on eBay – a usb flash drive advertised as 8GB 16GB 32GB or 64GB. You discovered the truth after testing with H2testw. You file a dispute with PayPal. PayPal email robots demand that you return the counterfeit flash memory device to the fraudulent seller as a condition of refund. PayPal will give you little time to think or research, imposing a 10 day limit to comply or your case will be dismissed.

PayPal is aware it is illegal to use the postal system in most countries to send or receive any counterfeit items. Yet, many eBay members are not aware of law and desperate to retrieve their funds, send the items back. While it is true, return addresses are often incorrect (allowing the seller to claim it was never received back), in some cases they are valid.

So what happens to these fake flash memory items purchased on eBay and returned to the fake flash memory seller?

Are they sent for QC inspection and testing as fake flash sellers often claim? No.

If they wanted to do any QC validation on memory, they have rows and shelves full of stock on hand to test. The returned false capacity items are not inspected, they are recycled. They are resold to the next unfortunate eBay member who bids and buys on the model.

One recent victim reported to SOSFakeFlash:

Its horrible to buy an item in good faith, only to have it arrive a few weeks later and find it to be a blatant fraud. On top of that, when i plugged th drive in, it showed up with the name “Linda” a clear indication that the drive had previously been sold, returned to the seller and then re-sold to me.

This is not uncommon. Nothing is wasted, fake flash sellers on eBay are determined to maximize profit. How to deal with this problem? See the “Message In Bottle – Marking Fake Flash Memory Items – Warn The Next Buyer” at the end of this article.

While Paypal is aware of laws, they will side with sellers not buyers. In doing so they participate in:

  1. forcing eBay members to violate Postal Laws in their home country and abroad.
  2. permit fake flash memory items to return to the selling buying chain anew.
  3. coerce eBay members unknowingly to assist in creating new victims who buy the returned fake memory items.

Many eBay members refuse to comply with PayPal’s demands, they do not want to participate in 1-3. They fight back not taking the 10 day limits seriously. Evidence at SOSFakeFlash shows that there is no fixed time line. Cases closed are forced reopened and emails and calls to PayPal frequently resolve the issue with out having to return a fake flash memory item. Some people do give in, not realizing the email orders are robotic templates with little human intelligence in the communications. The longest battle with PayPal on record is 8 months, with full success against many fraudulent eBay sellers. Others stockpile their correspondence and emails with eBay and PayPal waiting…. for a day in court.

The Case Of eBay Bidding Frenzies:

Some people who buy flash memory items on eBay do not only buy one item. They go into a short bidding frenzy over a period of a week or two. In their cases, many fake usb pensticks, MP3 MP4 Players and memory cards show up at their door in the following weeks. The money spent is considerable, the many paypal disputes too much to handle. The financial loss pending a hardship, they return the items to try and get back at least some of the money spent. What can these people do?

Message In Bottle – Marking Fake Flash Memory Items – Warn The Next Buyer

Since items are frequently resold to new buyers, why not leave a clue?

The FrankenFlash project has seen a case difficult to believe, but true. An eBay member bought fake flash drives from an eBay seller in China. He returned them, but not before marking the inside casings. The items found their way to Thailand as recycled items sold at a local stall. One purchased, let the buyer back to the original victim. Proof that fake flash memory items returned are not destroyed but resold.

If for financial reasons you feel you have no choice but to return fake flash memory products to the sellers, consider opening the items and leaving a message. Use a sticky label on the casing or etch into the casing if plastic. The message is yours to chose. “Fake 4GB bought on eBay”, “Fake sold by XXXXX” where XXXX is the eBay seller name,”Fake Memory – google SOSFakeFlash” are just some suggestions. Be creative, get your message out to warn the next victim who will buy it. If law enforcement can mark currency catch criminals, so can you mark fake flash memory devices to help track and trace.

Like all messages in a bottle a few will make it to shore! It will help prove these items are being resold and recycled.

Naturally, eBay fake flash sellers will read this article along with PayPal and eBay. Think of all the fun these sellers might have, opening all returned false capacity memory items to see if there is a message inside crying “FAKE”!

If you feel you have no choice but to return the items, have the last word. Put an message inside of a fake flash memory item to warn future buyers!