Article Summary

Preventing fraud requires diligent monitoring of incoming orders. It can seem a bit overwhelming, but once you have a strategy down, it doesn't take much time at all. To help, we've created a simple checklist for you to keep in mind when reviewing transactions. We've also provided a few quick and easy ways you can try to verify whether a buyer is legitimate.

Use this checklist to help look for suspicious activity.

1. Does the shipping address appear suspicious?

  • Shipping to high-risk location (vacant property, hotel, country, or location known for fraud)
  • You received recent claims or chargebacks from this customer
  • Customer is requesting overnight shipping for an expensive order that is in high demand (i.e., electronics)
  • Multiple orders are being shipped to the address within a short period of time

2. Does the order seem too good to be true?

  • Larger than average order from a new customer
  • Overpayment followed by a request to wire the difference
  • Received large quantity of orders from the same customer (name, email, phone, or computer) within a short time
  • Order consists of multiple requests for the same item (example: 10 iPads)
  • Customer offers to let you use their shipping service to receive a discount (customer controls where orders are shipped to)

What to do if you are suspicious and cannot afford to take the risk of a loss

Verify the customer’s contact information (name, phone, email) against the shipping address and look for consistent/matching information.

  • Search Engine - Search the Internet for the customer’s name, shipping address, email, and phone number.
  • Reverse Phone Lookup - Search the phone number to see where the registered user is located.
  • Online maps - Use satellite view to see where your order is being shipped.
  • Phone - Call the buyer and ask questions that help verify the order.
  • If you are selling a physical item that is eligible for seller protection - follow the Seller Protection Policy.

Related Article:
Help Prevent Fraud Losses

Although PayPal works hard to prevent fraud, every online transaction still carries an element of risk. Find out how you can take a proactive approach to risk management and help avoid fraud losses.

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