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how to determine if a particular Mac is stolen? - Mac Portable

I'm trying to buy a PowerBook G4 on Ebay. I have my eye on a 12" with superdrive, but the listing is written so badly that the seller clearly isn't a Mac user. So that means either it was an unwanted gift ... or a stolen Mac. I'm hesitant to post the exact URL or item number, since I really do want to buy it and would rather avoid potential competitors. But I also want to do the right thing if someone was robbed. Ideas? -F....

  1. #1

    Default how to determine if a particular Mac is stolen?

    I'm trying to buy a PowerBook G4 on Ebay. I have my eye on a 12"
    with superdrive, but the listing is written so badly that the
    seller clearly isn't a Mac user. So that means either it was an
    unwanted gift ... or a stolen Mac.

    I'm hesitant to post the exact URL or item number, since I really do
    want to buy it and would rather avoid potential competitors. But I
    also want to do the right thing if someone was robbed. Ideas?

    -F.
    Frank Nospam Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: how to determine if a particular Mac is stolen?

    In article <yahoo_com-BE4D32.13474419082003news.hcf.jhu.edu>,
    Frank Nospam <yahoo_comfrancis.uy> wrote:
    > I'm trying to buy a PowerBook G4 on Ebay. I have my eye on a 12"
    > with superdrive, but the listing is written so badly that the
    > seller clearly isn't a Mac user. So that means either it was an
    > unwanted gift ... or a stolen Mac.
    Or, like so many people on eBay, someone who buys and sells all kinds of
    stuff in the hope of turning a profit, who never intends actually using
    any of it. That is, someone who saw the PowerBook for sale somewhere at
    a price lower than they thought eBay might bring for it.
    > I'm hesitant to post the exact URL or item number, since I really do
    > want to buy it and would rather avoid potential competitors. But I
    > also want to do the right thing if someone was robbed. Ideas?
    There's no central registry or anything. If you know where the seller's
    located you could try to contact the police in that area and ask if
    there are any relevant theft reports. If you could get the serial
    number from the seller you could try Googling it. Both of these are
    long shots.

    --
    Tom "Tom" Harrington
    Macaroni, Automated System Maintenance for Mac OS X.
    Version 1.4: Best cleanup yet, gets files other tools miss.
    See [url]http://www.atomicbird.com/[/url]
    Tom Harrington Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: how to determine if a particular Mac is stolen?

    In article <yahoo_com-BE4D32.13474419082003news.hcf.jhu.edu>,
    Frank Nospam <yahoo_comfrancis.uy> wrote:
    > I'm hesitant to post the exact URL or item number, since I really do
    > want to buy it and would rather avoid potential competitors. But I
    > also want to do the right thing if someone was robbed. Ideas?
    The only listings that caught my attention were the ones with a starting
    price of $0.10, and those were invalid. The others looked fine to me.

    I wouldn't worry about drawing extra attention to the one you're looking
    at. There are already plenty of people competing with you. I seriously
    doubt you'll see something like that go for anything less than market
    value.

    --
    Larry Fransson
    Aviation software for Mac OS X!
    [url]http://www.subcritical.com[/url]
    Larry Fransson Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: how to determine if a particular Mac is stolen?


    "Frank Nospam" <yahoo_comfrancis.uy> wrote in message
    news:yahoo_com-BE4D32.13474419082003news.hcf.jhu.edu...
    > I'm trying to buy a PowerBook G4 on Ebay. I have my eye on a 12"
    > with superdrive, but the listing is written so badly that the
    > seller clearly isn't a Mac user. So that means either it was an
    > unwanted gift ... or a stolen Mac.
    >
    > I'm hesitant to post the exact URL or item number, since I really do
    > want to buy it and would rather avoid potential competitors. But I
    > also want to do the right thing if someone was robbed. Ideas?
    >
    > -F.

    What ever you do be careful as there are some major scams involving
    powerbooks on ebay.
    A key way of telling is if the seller asks you to pay by western union.

    Js


    JonnySkyman Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: how to determine if a particular Mac is stolen?

    powerbooks seem to invite major scams on ebay. I've noticed this
    especially with 17" PB G4s. A few things to watch out for:

    1) even if the seller has multiple good ratings, check out the
    merchandise they've sold in the past. If they've sold 1300 items and
    you take a look and the items are not technology/computer related,
    there's a good chance it's a scam.

    2) Avoid those "contact the seller first" / pre-approved bidder
    auctions. It mystifies me why ebay even allows this. If you contact
    them, they will invariably email you back saying they don't like using
    the ebay bid process - a violation of ebay policy.

    3) The account is registered in the U.S. but the seller then claims
    they are visiting a foriegn country.

    4) They are only accepting Western Union or wire transfer - this is
    sending cash to a complete stranger, pure and simple. In addition, most
    of them will tell you to transfer the money in a false name to be safe
    and then switch the transfer to their name when you receive the
    merchandise. This is false - for Western Union, all the receiver needs
    is a transaction number (which these sellers always ask for): the name
    you send to is irrelevant.

    5) The price is too good to be true - I just laugh when I see "brand
    new" 17" powerbooks being sold for something like $1600 and they are
    listed as "buy it now"

    6) When they email you, the tone of their messages is subservient to
    the point of groveling. things like "you can trust them, they want to
    make a good deal for you, they are very respectful of you" etc.

    7) They claim to be a liquidator (once again in a foriegn country) and
    they are selling off stock from a company that's gone out of business.

    As I sit here, I've been looking at ebay and I've found 5 listings like
    this. 3 of them have been removed (meaning someone reported it as a
    scam) and 2 of them are still active, but they have earmarkings of some
    of the items listed above. I attempted to contact ebay about this a
    while back and even though these scams always follow the same pattern,
    they refuse to do anything about it. Their attitude is "buyer beware"
    and you contact us (good luck with that by the way).


    Frank Nospam wrote:
    > I'm trying to buy a PowerBook G4 on Ebay. I have my eye on a 12"
    > with superdrive, but the listing is written so badly that the
    > seller clearly isn't a Mac user. So that means either it was an
    > unwanted gift ... or a stolen Mac.
    >
    > I'm hesitant to post the exact URL or item number, since I really do
    > want to buy it and would rather avoid potential competitors. But I
    > also want to do the right thing if someone was robbed. Ideas?
    >
    > -F.
    disneyfan Guest

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