News
News
7/31/2006
03:10 PM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

New Bot-Powered eBay Scam Uncovered

Crooks are using bots to create bogus eBay accounts that boast trustworthy profiles in a new scheme to rip off buyers.

"With that one-cent rate, building 100 accounts with 15 positive feedbacks each costs [just] $15 [total]," said Lovet. "And 100 accounts are a reasonably solid base to set up a good deal of bogus auctions. [These criminals] are building positive feedback while sleeping, watching porn, or chatting on IRC, and only for a fistful of bucks."

The whole setup -- sellers of one-cent items automating their end of the deal, criminals automating purchasing those penny items to create a history and receive legitimate-looking feedback -- is a good example of a cyber symbiotic relationship.

"It's win-win for both sides," said Lovet. "There are one-cent auctions that exist on one side, and crooks wanting to build positive feedback on the other.

"Two bots are talking to each other at some point," said Lovet, who noted that it would be funny if it wasn't being used to scam innocent eBay users.

Lovet said he had not uncovered any evidence that the two sides of the arrangement were being operated by the same people. "Both sides are only using each other," he said.

He recommended that buyers check any eBay seller's profile carefully, and if there are numerous one-cent purchases in the account's feedback, steer clear. "That's a strong sense that something's wrong," said Lovet.

Lovet has posted his eBay scam research on the Fortinet Web site.

Previous
2 of 2
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
InformationWeek's IT Perception Survey seeks to quantify how IT thinks it's doing versus how the business really views IT's performance in delivering services - and, more important, powering innovation. Our results suggest IT leaders should worry less about whether they're getting enough resources and more about the relationships they have with business unit peers.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Must Reads Oct. 21, 2014
InformationWeek's new Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage of digital strategy. Learn why you should learn to embrace DevOps, how to avoid roadblocks for digital projects, what the five steps to API management are, and more.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
A roundup of the top stories and trends on InformationWeek.com
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.