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Thread: Mail Fraud Faq

  1. #1
    Blast processor Melf's Avatar
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    Default Mail Fraud Faq

    Here are some helpful places to go to avoid getting burned from internet transactions.

    How To File For Mail Fraud

    Are you a victim of online fraud, or think you are a potential victim due to a single person or a company? Well, you have come to the right place to see what you can do to get your item/money back from the thieves.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

    1. I think I have been ripped off. What should I do?

    Go to any of the mail fraud sites listed below to file a complaint. I suggest filing for as many as you can.

    2. When should I file for mail fraud?

    If you have sent out numerous e-mails regarding your payment being received and/or item being sent and never received the item/e-mail within a 15-20 days from the date you shipped the item/payment, send out ONE LAST e-mail informing them that you will take action if they do not respond to your e-mails. If after 2-3 days of no response, start to file for mail fraud. The faster you file the mail fraud, the faster you will get what is owed to you.

    3. The other party responds to my e-mails, but keeps giving me excuses and/or the run around. What should I do?

    It's more than likely they just trying to buy more time. If they reply to your e-mails but keeps telling you that it will be shipped soon, over and over, notify them that you will be filing for mail fraud. File for mail fraud as soon as possible. Especially with PayPal and their 30-day policy (see FAQ #6). If you keep on letting them buy more time, they'll just keep giving you that same answer over and over until either the PayPal 30-day complaint is over, or if you forget about it and give up trying to get the item.

    4. What do I need when I file a complaint?

    Most of the time it's a win-win situation if you have most, if not all of the following..

    You will need the following contact information of the other party:

    * Name
    * Address
    * Phone Number (if available)

    You will need any of the following proof and/or evidence: (the more the better)

    * Email and/or Instant Message conversations
    * Proof of shipment of item
    * Proof of payment (Credit Card Bill, Check Statements, PayPal, Receipts, etc.)

    5. I paid for something online with a credit card, money order, check or cash and I never received the item. What should I do?

    If you paid with credit card, notify the credit card company, and inform them of the situation. Tell them you want to dispute the charge, and they will investigate.

    If you paid with a money order, you can go back to the place you bought the money order from or call the number that is on the receipt stub from the money order and have them do a 'stop payment'. What 'stop payment' does is, it prevents the person from cashing it in. But if the money order has been cashed already, there is nothing that can be done, unless you file for mail fraud. Also, the receipt stub that was on the money order can also be used as proof of payment, as well as proof of them cashing it when they track the money order.

    If you paid with a check, its similiar to a money order. You can do a 'stop payment'. If the check has been cashed, there is nothing that can be done, unless you file for mail fraud. If the check has been cashed, you can ask your bank for a bank statement concerning the check. This will be used as proof that the person cashed your check.

    If you paid in cash, this will be harder as there is no proof/receipt that you sent it. So, send at your own risk.

    6. I ordered something online using PayPal. What should I do?

    PayPal's policy is that, you have 30-days to file a complaint. If after 30-days, you are out of luck. If you have not received a response and/or item within 20-days, file a complaint with PayPal. If by any chance, you do receive the item, you can cancel the complaint with PayPal. If the other party is at fault, PayPal will recover whatever money is owed to you, IF the money is in the other party's account. If there is no money in the account, there is nothing that can be done unless you used your credit card on PayPal to pay for the item (see FAQ #5).

    7. Does there have to be a certain value before I can file for mail fraud?

    No. It's not the cost and/or value of the item, inorder for you to file for mail fraud. It's the principle. You can file for mail fraud whether your lost or the item costs, $5.00, $100.00, or even $1,000.00. Mail fraud is a crime and a federal offense. Legal action can be taken against the the other party if they are found guilty if they do not return what is owed to the respectful ower.

    8. When is it a good time to send out an item once I have received payment from buyer via PayPal? - UPDATED - 08/23/04

    There have been instances where a seller has sold an item (most of the time expensive items) to a buyer, whether it be a hard to find game, cellphone, systems, electronics, etc., and a couple days later, the payment was reversed. Most of the time, the payment is reversed due to stolen credit cards, stolen bank account information or just plain scam.

    Most sellers ship the item the next day after receiving the payment. Its good to be quick on shipping, but its also bad. If the payment was a scam/reversed, it takes PayPal 1-day to find out, email you and reverse the payment (2 days max..but rarely). Once payment is reversed, PayPal will do an investigation to see if it indeed was a fraudulent payment. If you're lucky to read the email before it is sent out, than you've saved yourself from losing an item. If not, and the package is already on the way to the scammer, go back to the place where you shipped the package and request it back do to an investigation and fraudulent payment.

    Best suggestion is to:

    * Ship item 2-3 business days after you have received the payment. This will give you enough time to see if there is problems with the payment.
    * Overseas countries are places to watch out for. Those are where most scammers are located and are hard to get back your item once its shipped. Some countries are:
    o Singapore
    o Lithuania
    o Malaysia
    * Send package with Delivery Confirmation. This will show the tracking of the package, proof of shipment and proof of arrival to buyer. This is a major factor when it comes to providing proof of shipment.

    9. I have a question but its not mentioned above. Can you help me?

    Sure. Just post your question and I will gladly try to help you answer any of your questions you might have.


    The following sites are places to file for mail fraud. I suggest filing as many as you can. This will not only help you, but will make the process quicker and notify the authorities of what the person is doing.

    Contact your nearest local law enforcement agency and inform them of the situation.

    U.S. Postal Inspection Service

    - USPS Mail Fraud Complaint Form
    - Mail-in Mail Fraud Complaint Form (.PDF) -- Adobe Acrobat is needed to view.
    - USPS Customer Service
    - Postal Inspector Office Locator

    Mail: Inspection Service Support Group
    Attn: Fraud Section
    Ste 1250
    222 S Riverside Plaza
    Chicago, IL 60606-6100

    Internet Fraud Complaint Center for the FBI

    - IFCC Complaint Form

    Federal Trade Commission

    - FTC Consumer Complaint Form

    National Fraud Information

    National Fraud Complaint Form
    Fraud Hotline
    9am - 5pm Eastern Time

    Better Business Bureau

    BBB Online Complaint Form


    Contact your nearest local law enforcement agency and inform them of the situation.

    International Fraud -- econsumer.gov

    econsumer.gov Complaint Form

    Canadian Consumer Information Complaint Form

    P.O. Box 686
    North Bay, Ontario
    P1B 8J8

    Toll Free Phone:
    (888) 495-8501
    Toll Free Fax: (888) 654-9426
    Email: info@phonebusters.com

    Council of Better Business Bureaus
    220 - 44 Byward Market Square
    Ottawa, Ontario
    K1N 7A2

    Phone: (613) 789-5151
    Fax: (613) 789-7044
    Email: ccbbb@canadiancouncilbbb.ca


    SquareTrade -- File a dispute. SquareTrade will be the mediator.

    PayPal Problem Resolution - UPDATED - 02/13/12
    PayPal Service Center: - UPDATED - 09/27/04

    PayPal Customer Service Agents are available to help you during the following times:

    * 4:00 AM PDT to 10:00 PM PDT Monday through Friday
    * 6:00 AM PDT to 8:00 PM PDT on Saturday
    * 8:00 AM PDT to 6:00 PM PDT on Sunday

    Call us at: 402-935-2050

    We may only discuss an account with the account-holder. Please have the following information available when you call:

    * Your telephone number
    * Your email address
    * The last 4 digits of your credit card or bank account registered with PayPal

    *Originally posted by Bandit at The Next Level.
    Last edited by Melf; 02-13-2012 at 11:19 PM.

  2. #2
    Turricanator Wildside Expert SwampFox56's Avatar
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    Excellent thread Melf

    I have a question. How would someone go about getting money for item, or getting an item back from someone who was supposed to mod their console but kept it for themselves? I ask because someone contacted me with suspicious, and I want to give them the assurance that if I was someone who tried to rip them off - that they could go about getting their stuff/money back.

  3. #3
    Blast processor Melf's Avatar
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    I think paying through PayPal would be the best way. I think you only have 30 days after payment to file a complaint, so you would have to offer assurances that you could do the mod and return the item in that amount of time. As for the items themselves, the person could require tracking and insurance to prove the item was shipped and file a mail fraud complaint if it wasn't.

  4. #4
    Video Game Modder Outrunner segasonicfan's Avatar
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    Cool thread. Sadly buyer scams using Paypal are still pretty common and there is little protection against them. I've heard so many stories of people buying something and then doing a charge back. Paypal doesn't do the best job investigating from what I understand. Ultimately the best way to be safe is to check the person's reputation and/or feedback. If they don't have any, they shouldn't be selling expensive items yet, pure and simple.

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