Fighting flash fraud on Ebay

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

ebay alert! eastern_shop_art sells counterfeit 128GB Kingston DT200

with 14 comments

This Kingston DataTraveler 200 USB flash drive from eastern_shop_art is counterfeit, fake capacity and corrupts files.

We advise everyone who buys flash memory items to test them with the free program h2testw irrespective of where they were purchased – otherwise you run the risk of data loss and corruption.

Report your fake if testing confirms you have purchased fake capacity flash memory on ebay.

14 Responses

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  1. OK I have now escalated my claim to a fraud claim, and now need to provide independent evidence that it is counterfeit, anybody have any idea how I can do this?

    Paypal not being much help at all!




    July 8, 2010 at 1:00 AM

  2. Hi daniel,

    You are quite right – sending counterfeit items through the postal system is indeed illegal and PayPal know it. However, their stupid automated system sends out messages telling you to return it despite the fact that their policy is that counterfeits should not be returned but be destroyed. As ebay has suspended this fraudulent seller ebay presumably know that eastern_shop_art was selling counterfeits. If PayPal are unhelpful it might be worth getting onto ebay customer services and see if they live up to their buyer protection promises:

    1. Always pay for your purchases with PayPal.
      To use eBay Buyer Protection, you’ll need to pay for your item using PayPal.
    2. If your item isn’t as described or doesn’t arrive, contact the seller first.
      Give them a chance to sort things out for you.
    3. If you still need help, let us know your problem. We’re available 7 days a week.
      You can notify us online or our customer service representatives who are available Monday-Friday: 8:00AM-10:00PM and Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays: 9:00AM-6:00PM.
    4. We’ll contact seller to help sort things out
      We’ll contact the seller and ask them to solve your issue within 10 days. After 10 days if the problem can’t be resolved between you and the seller, you’ve paid using PayPal and your claim qualifies for coverage with eBay Buyer Protection, eBay will arrange for the purchase price plus original shipping to be refunded through PayPal.
    5. If you didn’t pay with PayPal
      If the seller hasn’t resolved your issue you can still contact us and we will contact the seller to try to resolve the problem.


    July 1, 2010 at 8:13 AM

  3. Damn it!

    Just received mine, as well its a fake…. 😦

    I have appealed to paypal, waiting for a reply….

    not looking forward to having to return it, especially if it is illegal to do so. as shipping fakes is against the law I thought!

    Where do we go from here?

    Did anyone manage getting a letter from kingston?


    July 1, 2010 at 7:50 AM

  4. I’ve got a bit furhter now.. They have given me two options. First option is to get a document from Kingston to prove the item is indeed fake. Which I’m gonna try to get..

    Second option is to ship it to the seller. They say:
    “We will be considering the item as returned once
    tracking shows that delivery has been atempted and the address is

    I’m not gonna ship it back anyway!


    June 21, 2010 at 5:44 AM

  5. Hi Terje,

    Well the sellers are certainly part of the same fraud gang, if not actually the same person, by the look of it.


    June 18, 2010 at 10:22 AM

  6. Yes.. I have to try call them then maybe.. The seller id is eastern_shop_art

    The adress on the package is:
    Jian Li
    Jinlingdonglu79#208 Room
    Shanghaishi 200002 China.

    The return adress gotten from ebay is:

    tiegen li
    jin ling dong lu 79# 208 Room
    shanghai 上海 NC 200002

    And the adress at the other case is this:

    li jian
    jin ling dong rd #79 208 room
    shang hai 200001

    Very similar to mine…

    I suspect that eastern_shop_art and changhui19828 are the same seller.


    June 18, 2010 at 8:28 AM

  7. Hi Terje,

    Sometimes ebay staff can be incredibly dense – either that or they are actually told to be obstructive to avoid issuing refunds. You really need to speak to a supervisor by phone – they ought to be well aware by now that many of the sellers in China deliberately provide false addresses to avoid the possibility of receiving returns – I take it that your seller was changhui19828? If so this seller is part of a known fraud ring.


    June 18, 2010 at 8:15 AM

  8. I escalated it to a claim today.. Got this answer(copied what’s “important” from the mail):

    “I have good news! After reviewing the case, we have decided to have you
    return the item to the seller for a full refund! This means you will be
    refunded the cost of the item and the original shipping to you. Please
    be aware that the return shipping cost will be your responsibility and
    will not be included in the refund.

    At this time we ask that you send the item out and upload the tracking
    information for the shipment to the case within the next 7 days

    When the tracking number shows the item has been successfully delivered
    to the seller, our system will automatically issue you a refund.”

    Well, since it’s the same seller as this case:

    I know that because of the adress on my package is very similar to this one, and most likely to be fake.

    This means that the package will never be delivered and I’ll never get my money back.. Btw it costs me the same to ship it as I paid for the product..

    Any ideas of what to answer ebay to maybe get my money back without sending it?


    June 18, 2010 at 8:01 AM

  9. Hi Terje,

    Seems that ebay have already removed item number 170499756426. We haven’t seen ebay being so pro-active in removing listings for months – not since we lost our team member (he was unemployed and his computer died so he couldn’t carry on) whose efforts were dedicated to reporting counterfeits to Kingston who then forced ebay to remove them.

    Maybe someone else has taken up the cudgels!


    June 17, 2010 at 7:03 PM

  10. Ok..

    I’m just gonna wait and see what they answer next time..

    Found this on UK ebay:

    512GB Kingston Flash drive! haha!! I reported it to ebay.. hope they’ll remove it


    June 17, 2010 at 6:30 PM

  11. Hi Terje,

    We are fairly certain ebay knows it is counterfeit and fake capacity. Most ebay messages are automatically generated by their computer system and do not deal with the realities. We strongly suspect that ebay just wants to sweep all the fraud under the carpet.

    You need to get hold of a real person at ebay with a few brain cells and explain things to them in very simple terms – seems that half their employees are a bit short in this department.

    If it was genuine you would be able to verify the serial number with Kingston – but of course as it is counterfeit you won’t be able to!

    You might want to try getting Kingston to send you an email stating that as the serial number cannot be verified the item cannot be genuine – but whether they will do so is another matter as they probably have had a huge number of such requests.


    June 17, 2010 at 5:47 PM

  12. I bougth two 256 Gb’s from this seller.. Didn’t realize it was fake kingston until I opened the package..

    The seller offers me a full refund if i return the items.. I’m not gonna do that! Have started a case with Ebay. But they too want me to ship it back to the seller. I’ve told them I’m not gonna do it. Is there any thing I should do to increase the chances of getting my money back?

    Ebay removed the listing, code(?) MC019 after I paid for it, but before it was shipped.

    I asked ebay this: What does this mean? will it mean that I’ll not recieve the items and get the money back? Or will I recieve the items? I got a message that they were marked as shipped

    They answered:
    Dear Terje,

    Thank you for writing eBay in regard to your eBay purchase.

    280506304614 – 256GB USB FLASH DRIVE USB 2.0 PEN STICK MEMORY 256 GB

    You recently won an item from a listing that was removed from eBay.
    Unfortunately, that listing didn’t follow our policies so we want to let
    you know what your options are.

    Since you already paid for the item, you can keep it if it has already
    been sent to you. But if you want to return it, the seller should refund
    your payment.

    If the seller doesn’t give your money back, you can open a case 3 days
    after the estimated delivery date (if that info is available) or 7 days
    after you paid for the item (if no estimated delivery date was
    provided). If the item doesn’t match the seller’s description, you can
    open a case right away. In any event, you have to open a case within 45
    days of making payment.

    Well.. I thougt it was ok. Waited for the items to arrive.. then found out it was fake.

    I suspect Ebay knew it was fake since they removed it?


    June 17, 2010 at 5:29 PM

  13. Hi Ian,

    It won’t harm your computer as such unless it has a virus. Occasionaly we have had reports from buyers of a fake flash drive having a virus – though none of the team has experienced this.

    The thing it will harm is data you save to it after a certain point (usually under 4GB). Run h2testw rather than trying to put other files on it – this gives you a report showning at what point files start to be corrupted, which tells you what the original memory capacity was before the device was programmed to show a false capacity.


    June 4, 2010 at 9:26 AM

  14. Hi I have paid with my credit card but i have not recieved my 256 GB flash memorey stick but by all these reports i will be expecting a fraudulant one so i will keep in touch when i get it
    PS will it damage my computer when i try it out
    best regards ian struth

    Ian Struth

    June 4, 2010 at 4:29 AM

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