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[BizTalk] How to avoid online fraud?


#1

Hello: fellow jewelers

I’m a new member and soon will launch my website (f.h.creations.com),
of major concern is the high level of online fraud towards jewelry
merchants. I’ve read many forums and articles about online fraud but
they only discuss the issues about fraud itself andwhat countries to
avoid, none have whatsoever discuss the specifics of how a jewelry
merchant can avoid being a victim of online fraud. With the
tremendous amount of fraud online, nonetheless forget about
international orders, I will attempt to test the water domestically.

I know NOT to accept: No credit cards, NO paypal, Nogoogle checkout,
No money orders, No money grams, No electronic wire transfers, No
western union, Nopersonal checks, etc…

I discovered what I can use: bank to bank transfers, domestic
collection service, gateway service? which one? maybe american
express?

Totally confused/concern. can anyone guide me through the necessary
steps towards the safest payment to accept for online sales? Any
is highly appreciated.

Regards,
Fred…


#2
I know NOT to accept: No credit cards, NO paypal, Nogoogle
checkout, No money orders, No money grams, No electronic wire
transfers, No western union, Nopersonal checks, etc... 

Not sure where you are coming from, and will be most interested in
the replies, but if I didn’t accept your long list of things to not
accept, I would make very few sales… if any. I do take credit
cards and pay pal, in person I do take personal checks… how do you
expect them to pay for this? If you give folks too many hoops to
jump through they will buy elsewhere.

I live in the middle of nowhere, and my husband and I shop online
all the time. We pay either with credit cards or PayPal - always.
Always. Always. I have never bought from a site that did not allow
one of those, and would in fact be incredibly suspicious of anyone
who would not take one of these payment methods. They are standard
for online shopping these days.

I also sell online, both jewelry and other items, and have only once
so far had an issue - and that was a fraudulent order through e-Bay,
paid with PayPal. PayPal was great to work with, and we lost
nothing.

Good luck with your endeavors!

Beth Wicker
Three Cats and a Dog Design Studio
http://www.bethwicker.com
http://bethwicker.ganoksin.com/blogs/


#3

Fred,

I know NOT to accept: No credit cards, NO paypal, Nogoogle
checkout, No money orders, No money grams, No electronic wire
transfers, No western union, Nopersonal checks, etc... 

If you ever intend on selling anything on your website you need to
keep in mind what is convenient for your customer. All forms of
transactions carry some risk. You need to weigh the risk with how
likely a customer is to use it. If you’re are lucky enough to
attract a customer to your site then entice them to buy something,
unless they can pay for the item right then with a credit card they
are very unlikely to buy anything if it requires a trip to the bank
to arrange a bank to bank transfer. I would think people are less
likely to trust arraigning payment in that matter. I know my spidey
senses tingle when someone suggests an unusual form of payment which
involves an unknown entity access to my bank account.

I use PayPal for my credit card processor and have not had a problem
in years except when they raise the monthly fee. PayPal has shopping
cart support that’s easy to integrate into your website.

Rick Copeland
Silversmith and Lapidary Artisan
rockymountainwonders.com


#4

Too many restrictions, pal! PayPal is just fine! No credit
cards?

Suzanna


#5

Hi Fred,

I have had my website up since 1998 and have had only one fraudulent
sale in all that time. That was in 1999 (I think), was from Canada
and I had a bad feeling about it from the beginning. He was using a
stolen credit card number which went through just fine, only later
did the real owner step up to dis-claim the sale. From that
experience I learned to trust my “gut.” I usually have either a good
telephone conversation or email correspondence with each order and
have a pretty good feel if everything is OK. Scams are pretty easy
to spot. Last year to cut down on expensesI cancelled my merchant
account and now rely solely on Paypal. I believe you must have the
ability to take credit cards if you are going to have an on-line
store, unless you are using the website solely for advertising your
physical storefront.

What I love about the whole business is becoming acquainted with
people from all over the country and a few international customers.
I feel like I have friends everywhere! People are really very nice.

Jan McClellan
www.designjewel.com


#6

Honestly, if I didn’t accept anything in your list, I don’t think
I’d sell anything at all.

I accept Paypal, but the goods have to go to the confirmed address
on the Paypal account, and I send them in such a way that they have
to sign for them. Thus far knock on wood, that’s avoided fraud for
me. The whole idea of the “seller protection” policy seems to
discourage the slimeballs.

Similarly, if I do a credit card charge, I also insist on a
signature upon delivery, and mail only to the billing address on the
account.

When I accept a check or money order, I deposit it immediately and
do not mail the goods until it’s had at least a week to clear.

If my clients do a local pick-up, they sign a receipt saying exactly
what they’ve received and that they’re happy with it, whether they
pay by check or paypal or whatever.

Thus far, with these rules, I’ve done well.

It helps to have one’s timespan from deposit (non-refundable) to
completion be longer than 45 days (Paypal’s upper limit on
challenges); at least then if someone tries to pull something, you
have the deposit which should cover out-of-pocket costs.

I know new methods of defrauding are always being invented… but if
people can’t pay for my work, I can’t sell it, and I’m out of
business. So far pretty basic caution has worked out OK for me knock
on wood, again
.

Amanda Fisher


#7

I’ve had a couple of occasions where people have posted a comment on
my Orchid blog, asking about having a similar piece made to the one
in the post. On both occasions, the English was poorly written and
broken, giving me the impression that they were foreign. They asked
how much it would cost for me to make them a piece and what method of
payment I would prefer. They both also stressed that they couldn’t
afford much. I replied politely to both, giving them a realistic
price and stating that I prefer Paypal. I heard nothing from either
of them, just as I expected. I marked both posts as spam.

Forgive my naivety, but what sort of things go wrong with Paypal? Do
they make the payment and then call it back once you’ve dispatched
the goods? If that’s the case, they might not have any luck with me,
as I’ve usually transferred it straight into my bank account and
spent it on further supplies to make more jewellery! But I think
instinct is a good indicator of whether someone is genuine or not.

Aren’t folks in a bricks and mortar store just as much at risk of
cancelled credit card transactions, etc?

Helen
UK


#8

A relative of mine sells expensive equipment worldwide… each of
these items are about 5-10k. They only accept bank transfer, because
it’s the safest.

But they do accept credit card payment for the much cheaper
accessories, parts sales and things like that.

rita.


#9
Forgive my naivety, but what sort of things go wrong with Paypal?
Do they make the payment and then call it back once you've
dispatched the goods? If that's the case, they might not have any
luck with me, as I've usually transferred it straight into my bank
account and spent it on further supplies to make more jewellery! 

Paypal can reverse the charge just as a credit card company will if
the charge is contested. You have an contractual agreement with
Paypal–they will debit your credit card or bank account for the
charge-back if the money is not in the account. Since they can
transfer into your bank account, they can also transfer out of your
bank account. For more on what the procedures are, you should go and
read the Paypal info on how they handle disputes. All transactions
are subject to risk. One’s choice of payment methods should be based
on careful consideration of customers, price of the work, and venue.

Mary Ellin D’Agostino, PhD
www.medacreations.com
Sr. Teacher, PMC Connection
Certified Artisan, PMC Guild