I just got scammed on Ricardo

It seems that an account was compromise and a fraudulent seller used it to place an advert.

I guess I could have picked up on a few clues, but the scam was well done. Price was around market price so not too low to be suspicious. User accounts etc. all checked out. Originally was going to be a pick-up, but then I asked for mail order (I wonder if they would have pulled of the scam if in person pickup went ahead)

I found later the advert was copied from elsewhere and one thing that convinced me was that I wouldn’t have expected a scammer to have written that advert. Well, it turns out they didn’t, they just copied it. Lesson learned.


That sucks. Is the reporting mechanism any good? Hopefully you didn’t lose any money, or not much?

Ricardo are not very forthcoming so I have to guess at what happened, but I suspect it went like this:

  • Account was compromised, attacker used it to post an advert
  • After I won and wrote to the seller I got a text back with bank details. I wrote the seller by email.
  • Speculation: I wonder if the email went to the original account owner. Although it would make sense for the attacker to change the email, I wonder if they didn’t for some reason (e.g. to avoid alerting Ricardo). If so, the original owner then notified Ricardo but this was too late as the bank transfer already happened.

The item was a 3090 to do some of the AI processing of the old EF threads. So an expensive lesson >$600. I hope to recover $250 of it through the Ricardo seller protection.


I’m trying to understand this part.

You wrote to the seller’s email shown by the website. The doubt is if this email is either: a) email from legitimate user, meaning the legitimate user got email and ricardo accounts hacked, b) some breached a ricardo account, and changed the contact email. Option a is bit concerning, because that has far reaching implications (identity theft). Option b is much less worrying, consequences end with ricardo account.

Anyway, both of them are avoidable with pick-up at seller’s defined location. Thanks for the warning. I’ll stick to sellers within a 1h drive.

Funny thing is that the advert was for pick-up and I asked for delivery as it was more convenient. I don’t know whether this was a ploy to increase confidence that it was not a scam and bank on getting it delivered (or some extra ruse later to force delivery or get a UPS man to deliver for me).

Given the fees Ricardo charges, I think its pretty outrageous that you’re only protected upto CHF 250. With Ebay the entire amount is protected if you use an approved payment method.

I was very closed to being scammed on an iPhone from what I thought was a reputable Ricardo seller some years back. I made the bank transfer (next day execution) and just before I went to bed I checked my email and saw one from Ricardo telling me that the transaction was fraudulent, and when I looked I could see the account had been suspended.

Fortunately I still had time to cancel the payment, but it made me extremely wary especially when I saw their crap protection policy.

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I once bought an iPhone for my dad and it turned out to be still SIM-locked by an Austrian provider (it was sold by a guy in Liechtenstein).

Had to send it back.

He did have it unlocked and sent it back, but the hassle!

The key is to like and buy something that isn’t super-popular. These items will stay online long enough for the fraudster to be discovered.

How did you pay? Get the transaction traced

Bank transfer. Bank said don’t bother.

I saw on my household insurance (AXA) that I was insured against this as basic. I hadn’t realized.

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