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mellowred

Escrow System

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mellowred    10
mellowred

There are a number of con-artists operating on BoB. Granted they are a tiny minority, but they are here, and are getting more clever by the day.

 

BoB is the largest on-line market in South Africa, and you are obviously working hard at becoming even bigger. So it is worrying is that soon that tiny minority is going to cost the honest individuals hundreds of thousands of rands a week.

 

I know this has been discussed before, and believe that it was prohibitively expensive and legally difficult to create an Escrow system here in South Africa(?). But is it not time to rethink this?

 

The BoBPayEFT is already in place. Could this be expanded to include holding funds until the goods are received by the buyer? If an item's price goes over R1,000 this payment method is automatically offered to the buyer (at a fee to the Escrow system).

 

You guys are pretty clever at setting up new systems, surely it would be prudent to invest some time and money in this now.

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wayjen    10
wayjen

I have no idea what an Escrow dinges is let me relate a similar story about holding funds.

 

There is another online shop that allows you to sell books online. This shop keeps your money for 14 days until the customer is happy and then releases it to you. I have a problem with this and emailed this shop with my problem as some people can read a book within a few hours or days and then say they are dissatisfied with the product and they get their money back. A person can copy a cd or dvd within minutes and return the goods and demand their money back so what then?

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mellowred    10
mellowred

That makes sense on items that can be copied Wayne. But I'm not referring to books, cds etc.

 

To run a scam you need to work in thousands of rands per sale or it will not work - you'd be caught before you made enough moolah. The favoured items for scammers average at R2,000 to R10,000 like laptops, cell phones, etc.

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Vinyl Lady Decals    10
Vinyl Lady Decals

Maybe it should depend on sale amount of the item.

Say items that go for R1000.00 and up

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RISadler    10
RISadler

I nth the suggestion and am extending it by suggesting that BoB also inspect the items - for a small fee, obviously.

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qball    11
qball

Unfortunately at this time there are no plans to offer escrow, firstly because of the reasons previously discussed - costs, legalities etc. Also what would one be prepared to pay for such a service, who would pay the fee? From past experience, when THIRT.com was still around, the fee was 6%, many buyers did not want to use it due to the cost, nor did sellers want to wait for their money, the use of this service relies on mutual consent from both parties.

 

bidorbuy will not inspect goods, it's not our business nor would we want to be involved in inspecting goods due to logistics and financial factors, this type of service would be very costly, especially when you have to pay experts or specialists in a field, we also need to remain unbiased, impartial and independent.

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JPBon    10
JPBon

There would also be other implications that would have to be looked at for such a service to be offered, with South Africas laws Bob or the persons holding the funds would have to be registered as a financial services institution to be allowed to hold the funds, their are many legal implications involved that make it virtually impossible to do this.

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mellowred    10
mellowred
Also what would one be prepared to pay for such a service, who would pay the fee? From past experience, when THIRT.com was still around, the fee was 6%, many buyers did not want to use it due to the cost, nor did sellers want to wait for their money, the use of this service relies on mutual consent from both parties.

 

It would be a protection for the buyer so the buyer should pay. 6% is high though. As for sellers waiting for their money, it would certainly speed up the posting of items :biggrin:. Seriously though, it could be a problem but if the waiting period is ±15 days users selling higher end items on a regular basis would most likely be able to factor this in.

 

Also in response to JP's concern, could this service be outsourced to one of the banks? Capitec springs to mind.

 

There would also be other implications that would have to be looked at for such a service to be offered, with South Africas laws Bob or the persons holding the funds would have to be registered as a financial services institution to be allowed to hold the funds, their are many legal implications involved that make it virtually impossible to do this.

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JPBon    10
JPBon

I wouldn't know who would be able to do this but its not as easy as it sounds. I do know that since these acts have come into place everything including certain staff dealing with things likes loans, credit, trust accounts etc have to pass tests.

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mellowred    10
mellowred

That's really a pity. It would be the most effective way to eliminate the scammers.

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MsPlod    10
MsPlod

Tiger among the pigeons

 

In principle this seems like a great idea. The sadness is that of all the transactions I have had on BoB I have only had three major (or significant) "let downs" by traders.

 

One which I am specifically not allowed to talk about AT ALL, and two others - the first of the other two is a seller not sending the items for a couple of orders (since March and April this year), they are starting to trickle through now though (BoB does know about this and is helping me with the matter) and the other for some (low value) items received which quite simply are not really what I ordered and (from the same seller) items received broken - and I am fairly sure that is how they left the seller's premises but cannot prove it - so simply will not purchase any more from that seller.

 

I depend on ratings and on feedback in the forum, the escrow system is really only worth it should there be a "high end" item OR order worth say R1,000 plus. Then the potential for being able to place a stop on the money, until such time as the item is received in good order is in theory a good one. However, there will then be an elevated potential for buyers to be able to damage/defraud/etc. sellers by saying they have not received an item, or it was damaged, or it was not what they wanted, etc.

 

Another option is to have a system in place whereby traders and buyers who receive more than say 5 (number is an example) valid negative ratings in the space of a month, are automatically disabled until such time as they can prove (legally/factually/whatever) that they are prepared to address the reasons for the negative ratings. So, for example, should I default on paying for a number of items - then during an SNC process I would not be able to buy anything until the successful completion of the SNC and the removal of the negative ratings.

 

This is definitely going to throw a tiger in among the pigeons...

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mellowred    10
mellowred
I depend on ratings and on feedback in the forum, the escrow system is really only worth it should there be a "high end" item OR order worth say R1,000 plus. Then the potential for being able to place a stop on the money, until such time as the item is received in good order is in theory a good one. However, there will then be an elevated potential for buyers to be able to damage/defraud/etc. sellers by saying they have not received an item, or it was damaged, or it was not what they wanted, etc.

 

I'm referring to the high end items, and that it should be an automatic option for the buyer. The only way to eliminate the buyer scammers would be to involve a courier or a postage option which forces the buyer to sign a "received in good order" note. All these things would add to costs, but if I were saving R2,000 + on an item I'd be prepared to spend a bit to make sure I was not being scammed.

 

Another option is to have a system in place whereby traders and buyers who receive more than say 5 (number is an example) valid negative ratings in the space of a month, are automatically disabled until such time as they can prove (legally/factually/whatever) that they are prepared to address the reasons for the negative ratings. So, for example, should I default on paying for a number of items - then during an SNC process I would not be able to buy anything until the successful completion of the SNC and the removal of the negative ratings.

 

I love this idea, can you just imagine the admin down-time of some of the big sellers here on BoB :biggrin:.

 

There are problems with this too though. Whatever the number of negatives is, there could be a lot of revenge games played. I'm thinking of the "Do you trust ratings" thread. If you have it in for someone, you could purchase a number of items and rate negative. If the system shut the seller down automatically there would be some time involved before BoB reinstated them and this could cause havoc for an innocent seller.

 

I assume that multiple bad ratings are flagged for BoB's attention. However I don't know if/when they react to them. Hopefully they don't wait for a CW report before investigating.

 

But I also had to add that most times when a large scam has occurred, buyers also have to take responsibility for their actions. To buy from someone who already has several serious negative ratings is just looking for trouble.

 

Perhaps BoB should include your flashing "Check the Ratings Before Buying" animation on the sellers page :cool:. This should also include "Check postage rates".

 

Eish, the con-artists really receive a lot of forum time don't they. :cry:

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MsPlod    10
MsPlod
There are problems with this too though. Whatever the number of negatives is, there could be a lot of revenge games played. I'm thinking of the "Do you trust ratings" thread. If you have it in for someone, you could purchase a number of items and rate negative. If the system shut the seller down automatically there would be some time involved before BoB reinstated them and this could cause havoc for an innocent seller.

Agreed that revenge ratings could be an issue - which is the reason for the stress placed on VALID ratings (i.e. those which are unchallenged).

Another option is to have a system in place whereby traders and buyers who receive more than say 5 (number is an example) valid negative ratings in the space of a month, are automatically disabled until such time as they can prove (legally/factually/whatever) that they are prepared to address the reasons for the negative ratings.

I assume that multiple bad ratings are flagged for BoB's attention. However I don't know if/when they react to them. Hopefully they don't wait for a CW report before investigating.

I'd also be really interested to know how they do this presently.

Eish, the con-artists really receive a lot of forum time don't they. :cry:

Sadly, yes! The naughty children are the ones who end up getting the most attention...

Edited by MsPlod
spelfout...

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TheJeweller    10
TheJeweller

No system can change a person.

The fraud will find his way and only honest pay.

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mellowred    10
mellowred
No system can change a person.

The fraud will find his way and only honest pay.

 

Sad but true Jeweller. Con men always find a way arouse the security measures.

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