How do you tell when someone's shill bidding?

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  1. Hi all. I found a DVD set on ebay that I couldn't find anywhere in the department stores. The seller had $0.99 start bidding price, when there was 1 day or so left, I placed a bid just to see if there was a reserve. Then this bidder 2 out bidded me, later on bidder 3 jumped in but was out bidded by bidder 2 two hours later. The price has jumped from $0.99 to $10 in half a day.

    The reason that I think the seller maybe shill bidding is

    1. The listing is private but in his feedbacks, there was no private listings at all.
    2. I've been watching his DVD sets (the same ones as I want), he always has them at BIN for $70 or start bidding at $50. But they rarely get sold. That's why he listed it so cheap this time I guess.
    3. Bidder 2 has 7% bidding activity with this seller.

    Is there any way you can tell the sellers are shill bidding? Can you report them to ebay or will ebay look into it? I don't mind paying higher price for it as long as it's not shill bidding. Otherwise, I would feel ripped off.

    Any help would be appreciated! :flowers:
  2. I think it's impossible to know. This is the only one that makes me wonder:

    3. Bidder 2 has 7% bidding activity with this seller.

    BUT, if the person won and paid for all of their items it is probably not a shill bidder, but a repeat buyer. I know I've bought several times from the same seller because I like their service and their stuff!

    Now that eBay has the *** thing going on it's even harder to know.
  3. It's pretty hard to tell, if at all. I have repeat business with sellers often so that might explain the percentages. I hope you win! Good luck!
  4. Thanks guys. But the seller only sells the same DVDs...hmmm. I wonder if someone really needed 2 sents of the same ones. I can't really look it up because as I said, the listing was private. Everyone is referred as "bidder 1" "bidder 2" etc.
    Isn't there away that ebay can look it up? Like checking your internet cookies to find out if you login with 2 different user IDs from the same computer?
  5. There's no way to really tell. On more expensive items, if a 0 feedback bidder keeps bumping the price up $25 here and $50 there I start to wonder. If it's obvious someone is going to keep bumping up the price I stop bidding. Even if it's not shilling, I don't want to pay more for something because some novice bidder doesn't know how to snipe! ;)
  6. Ebay has ways to tell if a seller is bidding on their own stuff. They warn sellers not to have people that live in the same house or work with them bid on their items, because they might have the same IP addresses, etc... but that doesn't stop people who have friends across town (or across the country) bidding on their things to raise the price. ;)
  7. Thanks caannie. I contacted ebay live help and they said they don't have access to look it up so I have to write to the security department. I believe it takes them up to 48hrs to reply but the item ends in a couple of hours and it's only a 3 day listing.

    I guess I'm just gonna have to deal with it if I want it that bad.

    And update: a bidder 5 jumped in with 100% bidding activity with this seller! OMG... he/she has 1-9 FB. I'm getting way to paranoid sigh...
  8. You can never be sure if someone is shill bidding. Shill bidders are usually not the same person as seller, they can even come from another country, like friend/relative living abroad, and shill bidding just this once. On the other hand some people love to patronize a single seller for reasons like they get discounts or shipping waivers. I wouldn't worry about this one, unless I get outbid and get sent a second chance offer.
  9. ^That's the thing: how can you tell? I often bid on the same sellers stuff, i.e. repeat buying - even if I don't always win their auctions. I would hate for *bay to think I'm bidding up a sellers account!

    How can they know the difference?
  10. Under new rules where bidders IDs are hidden, there's no way. I believe ebay has their own private investigators to dig up this info. I remember reading it somewhere.
  11. I wish I knew too! The same person keeps hounding the same auction I'm eyeing, and he/ she is so quick to bid... Maybe just another enthusiastic person just wanting the same bag I want. But I wish I knew if it was for real!
  12. ^^But how many private I's can they have? There are thousands and thousands of new items listed everyday. How can figure out who is shill bidding. I'm still not sure why they hid the sellers names. I know it was to protect bidders, but it seems like it just encourages shilling???
  13. These private investigators are forensic IT investigators, professional at what they're doing. I'm sure they have an automated program that sifts out IP addresses pertaining to a particular auction, and if the pattern is similar it would sound their alarm bells.

    As far as I know ebay concealed bidder IDs because of a large scam where unknown sellers pose as known ebay sellers offering bidders to trade outside ebay, letting them part with their precious monies in exchange for something that will never arrive in the mail.
  14. ^^So if they have these programs, then why is there so much shill bidding going on on ebay?
  15. ^ coz ebay gets more FVF out of it if it sells for higher.:devil:so i guess they dont bother if they dont have to.