How Flippa.com protect fraudsters and encourage abuse

edited March 2018 in General Discussion

UPDATE: After posting this post to Twitter from this forum. It took Flippa an hour to read over the ticket history and issue me a refund plus a free re-list. I am still out the chargeback fee of $20. I more disappointed how Flippa handled this though. Like so many companies, it takes public shaming to get them to do the right thing.

Over the years I have sold quite a few websites on the Flippa Marketplace. Gone are the golden days when an would easily amount to thousands of dollars and plenty of bids. Nowadays many listings I see on Flippa do not sell. I have had some success selling mobile apps on Flippa but only because I practically gave them away.

It is safe to say the Flippa Marketplace is not what it once was and seems in steady decline.

What really surprises me about Flippa is how they deal with fraud. You would think Flippa is on top of fraud and works to deter it. Instead they seem to favor fraud on Flippa and instead of protecting sellers, they protect fraudsters. This kind of policy leads to more fraud as instead of deterring fraudulent activity it actually encourages it.

I recently sold a crap gaming website that I acquired through an acquisition. I wasn't really concerned with price, just wanted the site sold. It sold for $45 after a couple of bids.

Buyer paid $45 via PayPal and I sent websites files and domain EPP code so the buyer can transfer the domain.

Flippa then automatically charged me the success fee of around $6 via PayPal.

After a few days I received an email from PayPal to say that the $40 had been returned to buyer as they reported it as fraud.

Here is the details:

Transaction date: January 19, 2018
Transaction amount: $45.00 USD
Disputed amount: $47.54 USD

The transaction was not eligible for Seller Protection. If a transaction is eligible for Seller protection, it will be marked as Eligible or Partially Eligible on your Transaction Details page.
In addition, you have been debited a $20.00 USD chargeback fee.

I quickly locked the domain so the transfer failed but the buyer had already downloaded website files.

PayPal later charged an additional $20 chargeback fee and Flippa are unwilling to refund success fee as they have determined the auction was successful.

Some of the responses from Flippa Support are quite shocking and show they lack basic customer skills and the competence to protect their customers from fraud.

I called PayPal who were informative and helped with the issue. The same cannot be said for Flippa, here is response from Flippa:

_Hi Perry

Thanks for reaching out.

Unfortunately, we do not have jurisdiction over payment done via third-part payment platforms such as PayPal.

I recommend reaching out to PayPal directly to know more about this issue.

Hope this helps, please get back to us with any further questions.

Cheers,

Roy
Flippa Marketplace Integrity_

Even after fraud has taken place, Flippa does not favor buyer. They instead favor the fraudster so they can keep success and auction fees to themselves.

Here are some messages from Flippa regarding this issue. This highlighted response shows how they a stale mate with you. By suspending the fraudulent user and requiring them to have an active account at the same ensures there is not possibility Flippa will refund

Response from Flippa:
_
Hi Perry,

We are not able to refund your fee and relist your auction as the transaction is still active.

Unfortunately, we will not be able to cancel the transaction even if a dispute is lodged as dispute is not applicable when funds and/or assets have been fully or partially transferred.

The seller has already been sanctioned for fraudulent dispute. If you wish to have the sale cancelled, we would need confirmation from both parties that the asset has been returned to you.

Let me know if you have further questions.

Cheers,

Roy
Flippa Marketplace Integrity_

Roy from Flippa tries to contradict and complicate rather than resolve...

_Dispute has again been canceled as dispute is not applicable when funds and/or assets have been fully or partially transferred. Please contact us at
marketplace-integrity-zendesk@flippa.com with the listing number (9358086) attached if you believe a mistake has been made. _

Dispute gets opened and closed a few time as requested. Then it gets closed by Flippa for unknown reasons. This goes on for 2 months.
_
Hi Perry,

You may re-lodge a new dispute and include that in the note so we can resolve it right away.

Please let me know how it goes.

Cheers,

Roy
Flippa Marketplace Integrity_

I re-lodge dispute then Roy decides to change up tactics:

_Hi Perry,

We are not able to refund your fee and relist your auction as the transaction is still active.

Unfortunately, we will not be able to cancel the transaction even if a dispute is lodged as dispute is not applicable when funds and/or assets have been fully or partially transferred.

The seller has already been sanctioned for fraudulent dispute. If you wish to have the sale cancelled, we would need confirmation from both parties that the asset has been returned to you.

Let me know if you have further questions.

Cheers,

Roy
Flippa Marketplace Integrity_

The tickets continues to loop around in circles, wasting much of my time for a small amount of money, although this is obviously fraud. I eventually decide to go public and waste some Flippa time instead of my own. I took to Twitter and we will see how Flippa acts to resolve.

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