Fighting flash fraud on Ebay

The authors of this blog want to elimnate flash fraud on Ebay

Another fraudulent ebay seller with fake USB flash drives

with 14 comments


Seller jinchaomianfei168 has had some listings removed by ebay so there is no doubt whatsoever that this seller is fraudulent.

gremlin2sNo doubt the ID jinchaomianfei168 belongs to one of the familiar fraud gangs operating out of China.

The buy it now price for the 64GB Kingston DataTraveler USB flash drive shown above is less than it costs to make genuine ones – therefore it is counterfeit.

The seller is not currently listing any flash drives for sale – seems ebay removed this listing too!

Counterfeits are also fake capacity. Fake capacity flash drives trash users files because once the true capacity is exceeded there is nowhere for them to go. Any flash drives purchased from this fraudster will trash users’ files after a while.

You cannot tell the true capacity of a flash drive by looking at the drive properties because fakes are programmed to provide false capacity information to the operating system. The only way you can check whether a flash drive has the capacity claimed is to test it, either the hard way (by filling the drive up manually) or the safer, quicker and easier way – with h2testw.

We advise everyone to test all flash memory with the free program h2testw.

Report in to SOSFakeFlash if your testing confirms you have a false capacity device.

14 Responses

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  1. To Everyone

    Please assist Kingston Technologies by reporting your fake flash usb drives to them. Kingston is busy fighting back and they need your help.

    SOSFakeFlash has recently received information on two websites outside of ebay selling counterfeits. The infornmation is currently being investigated.

    Contact Kingston for any website that sold you a counterfeit or fake. They need your help.


    November 25, 2009 at 7:23 AM

  2. Hi ITguy,

    Thanks for the reply; I might have to try this if Kingston is not able to help with my PayPal claim.


    I have received a reply from Kingston saying they will send written confirmation to PayPal about the fake flash drive if I provide them with pictures of the flash drive.

    Scott Davidson

    November 24, 2009 at 8:17 PM

  3. Thanks ITguy – this could be very good news for all victims of fraud on ebay!


    November 24, 2009 at 8:06 PM

  4. To Scott

    I noticed comments on the internet that people were able to call paypal toll free number via skype. It should also be possible from UK/EU


    November 24, 2009 at 6:52 PM

  5. Hi fightflashfraud,

    Thanks for the reply. I have sent an email to Kingston asking if they know where I could get some documentation from. I will wait a few days for a reply from them before I try to call PayPal.


    Hi ITguy,

    Thanks for the reply. Do you know if this works from the UK?


    Scott Davidson

    November 24, 2009 at 9:20 AM

  6. Calling paypal for free.

    Try this to call paypal for free – it works in north america


    November 24, 2009 at 1:35 AM

  7. Hi Scott,

    Dian is having a huge problem with paypal – she provided photos, evidence from Kingston that the serial number was fake, and the test results from h2testw – they were still sending her ludicrous emails and refusing to accept her evidence when we last heard from her yesterday.

    We did suggest (in a personal email to her) phoning them as this has broken through the barriers for some people; but she didn’t try this yet as far as we know.

    She didn’t want to phone them because the numbers shown on other frankenflash project blogs (you will see some of the other blogs in our list) would have involved an expensive international call for her.

    We have found that (at least to some extent) the best approach to take in overcoming the automated systems on ebay/paypal and getting any sense out of them varies according to the country you live in!

    Safe with paypal? We think not!!


    November 23, 2009 at 9:46 PM

  8. Hi Dian,

    I have just received the same email from PayPal. Could you please tell if you were able to get any documentation about the item not been authentic. And where you got the documentation from.


    Scott Davidson

    November 23, 2009 at 8:40 PM

  9. Hi Dian,

    Please read and respond to the personal email sent to you (starts with the reply we gave above) but has other things below!


    November 16, 2009 at 5:40 PM

  10. I will try to get in touch with eBay customer service.



    November 16, 2009 at 4:05 PM

  11. Hi Dian,

    Looks like you have drawn a short straw and are going to be given the runaround by PayPal. The message you got is a standard form mail sent out automatically without anyone with half a braincell looking at the case.

    You need to get hold of an actual human being with some grey matter between their ears! As it seems Kingston forced ebay to remove listings for the flash drives you bought you may find that ebay customer service can help resolve this.


    November 16, 2009 at 2:21 PM

  12. So items are here, both fake as expected.

    Tested with H2testw! Took a day to test!

    Writing speed was 2/3 MB/s

    Both Items have the same serial number, which super-funny. Kingston website check said that the item with this serial number is not authentic Kingston product.

    ..And you know what? Here is what PayPal wants.

    “In order to continue with the investigation of your complaint, we must
    request documentation to support your claim that the items are not
    authentic. Please obtain a document from an unbiased, third-party, such as
    a dealer, appraiser, or another individual or organization that is
    qualified in the area of the items in question (other than yourself), which
    clearly identifies the items as not authentic. If possible, the document
    should include a serial number and description of the items, and must be on
    letterhead that includes the name, address, and phone number of the
    individual, business, or organization so that PayPal may contact them if

    The documents should be faxed to PayPal at 08707 303 196. Please include a
    cover sheet with your fax that includes the email address registered on
    your PayPal account and the ID number of your claim PP-827-122-439, so we
    may attach the documents to your claim as quickly as possible.

    We must receive your fax within 10 days from the date of this message in
    order to proceed with the investigation of your claim. If we do not receive
    your fax within 10 days, your claim will be cancelled. We are unable to
    grant extensions to this time period. Please note that PayPal is unable to
    reimburse you for any costs or fees that may be incurred in obtaining the
    requested documents. Any documents you provide may also be supplied to the
    seller in your dispute if necessary.

    Thank you for your cooperation and patience. We regret any inconvenience
    this request may cause. ”

    Where do I do this?

    I have 9 days now. Can you help?


    November 16, 2009 at 1:32 PM

  13. Hi Dian,

    As you are new to the blog you may be wondering about the gremlin picture – we often use this in posts about sellers using IDs that we beleive belong to well known fraud gangs.

    The word gremlin originated in the British Royal Air Force (RAF) and was to do with unexpelained technological failures in British aircraft during World War 2.

    The term gremlin seemed appropriate for fake flash fraud as most buyers are mystified when files on their USB flash drive either vanish altogether or become corrupted.

    However, there is no real mystery here – the failure is simply due to the fact that the chips used could not possibly store the amount of data claimed.

    Simple fraud, not faulty items (as sellers often claim) but fraudulent items!

    Keep us posted on what happens. By the way, a personal email has been sent to you by a member of our team.


    October 30, 2009 at 7:58 PM

  14. Now that’s bad.

    Even though I contacted him and said not to ship the item but refund the money he now shipped it.

    Anyway… I’ll wait for it to come, test and prove it’s fake. Then I’ll open a case at PayPal.


    October 30, 2009 at 7:36 PM

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