If PayPal and Facebook allow fraud to occur are they party to that fraud?

Facebook PayPal fraud
Image by tilialucida | Bigstockphoto.com

If you buy from a Facebook ad, use PayPal for payment and a fraud results and expect Facebook or PayPal to come to your assistance, you may be disappointed.

You see ads on Facebook offering goods and services that seem too good to be true, but you simply can’t avoid checking them out. You know the ones I’m talking about. Of the hundreds that turn up unannounced each day on your feed occasionally, you see something that is of interest to you. In my case, it was a battery-powered, hand-held chainsaw pruner ideal for trimming olive trees.

Out of interest, I clicked on the ad to find out more and was astounded that it featured a famous brand at a ridiculously low price. Better still, I could pay with PayPal and thought that I would be covered if the goods were fake or not delivered.

I proceeded with my order and discovered the company I was dealing with was Yokawa Network Limited. Japanese sounding name, right? What could go wrong? Well, you guessed it, everything!

Days later I received an email with a shipping consignment and tracking number and a link to a site to check on the progress of my delivery. That was the first alarm bell – the goods were being shipped from China. OK, I have ordered stuff from China before and even though it took a while to reach me, it finally did.

However, weeks passed and with no sign of my miracle tool with the miracle price. Worse still, a check on the tracking site reported that my package had already been delivered on a date I was at home all day.

As a check, I entered my consignment number on Google and a number of other tracking sites turned up. All claimed the parcel had been delivered but all had differing information on the route and even the courier company that supposedly came to my home. One showed a firm that does not even operate in my country!

Another search on Google revealed what I was now expecting. I, and many others, had been scammed. All the reports online were similar to my own experience so I turned to PayPal for resolution where I was told I had to first contact Yokawa through the PayPal portal and only escalate the matter with PayPal if that was unsuccessful.

Yokawa did write back and told me the goods had been delivered and they were not entertaining any other scenario. So it was back to PayPal. A few days later I was informed that because Yokawa had proof the goods were delivered I had no claim for a refund.

Despite pointing out to PayPal that I was not the only person scammed and that all it had to do was search Google for proof, PayPal steadfastly refused to do anything else. It seems the company does not have access to Google or the internet! Matter closed.

I thought I should raise the matter with Facebook that they were allowing fraudsters to advertise on the platform but couldn’t find the original ad, it was long gone.

In summary, many of the firms advertising on Facebook are China-based and have developed a ‘sophisticated’ way to falsify shipping information and send you to tracking sites that are also fraudulent. They claim the goods you ordered have been delivered when they clearly have not been, and by courier companies that don’t even exist in your country. And if you think PayPal will support you or refund your money, forget it. They will side with the fraudsters saying they have proof the goods were delivered – the same fake information provided to the hapless customer.

Shame on Facebook for continuing to run the ads and shame on PayPal for treating their loyal customers as if they were the criminals. I no longer feel PayPal is trustworthy so I am closing my accounts. Beware of anything from Yokawa Network Limited selling hand-held battery-powered pruners. But there are many others out there and you won’t know the trader until you make payment so stick by the old adage – if it seems too good to be true, it usually is!

In this case, with so many documented cases on the internet, PayPal and Facebook (and also Pinterest it seems) must have been aware of the scam yet allowed it to continue. And how many other similar scams are going unchecked? Does this make them party to the fraud? What regulatory body can the hapless victims turn to?

I’ve never been one for heavy-handed regulation but maybe it’s time big tech was called to order.

Related articles: Australia audits PayPal for laundering, terror law compliance; Google and Facebook vs Governments – who will ultimately win?

11 Comments

  1. I am going through a similar situation, except that my order came and it was NOT what I ordered. I tried working directly with the company via email only to be told they sent what I ordered. Today, I started a PayPal dispute but it goes to the company first so they can reply, and I’m sure I will get the exact same outcome. I will end up doing a charge back with my bank to try to get my money back, and I will be reporting this to my state Attorney General. I see a class action lawsuit in the future of all companies involved for allowing such fraudulent behaviors to continue.

  2. I was same, GBP45 yokawa network limited, Dec 2020. Contacted PayPal and they sent back case closed, nothing they can do. They probably in the fraud with them.

  3. Same thing with Yokawa Network Limited… they gave me a tracking number that never showed delivery.. disputed with Paypal… so Yokawa Network Limited gave them a different number showing a delivery date before my tracking number was even sent to me! Paypal closed the dispute saying it was delivered.

  4. I had done the exact same thing as you all, i never received my item which was a xmas pressy, i checked the name out on google and my heart sank! I got on to paypal, the last thing i heard was tbe trader has 30 days to reply!
    I had a car crash xmS week so only now catching up on things. I have just sent pay pal an email for an up date, but im not optomistic. This has been going on for a while so why have pp or any other company not stopped doing business with the.????
    🙁

    • We are asking the same question! Surely if they know fraud is being committed, and it’s all over the internet, are they not complicit in the fraud?

  5. Facebook should be for allowing them to advertise on their site and not checking that they are a legitimate company. These fake companies have on their sites that they take and prefer PayPal. You go through PayPal and PayPal takes your money and pays a company and doesn’t first and check that it’s not a scam. They have the bank they put the money in. Also, it is ridiculous to have to go through the hassle and aggravating steps that PayPal puts you through to try and get your money back. You can’t call PayPal and talk to anyone everything done by email. With the hundreds of scams bullcrap that goes through emails. I work and I’m also not real computer knowledgeable. But if PayPal sees this many people are saying this company didn’t send their purchase. They know you were scammed. Case closed refund the money. Simple

  6. Same thing with me, happened with ordering company called Yokawa Network Limited… they gave me a tracking number that never showed delivery.. disputed with Paypal… so Yokawa Network Limited gave them a tracking number from a China courier that was fraud. Paypal closed the dispute saying it was delivered.

  7. Same thing happen to me.. I was sent an email saying that the item was delivered along with tracking number, but it was not.. So I file a dispute with PayPal.. little that I know this article is exactly right it was a fraud.. I sent an email to Yokowa and all of the sudden came back with email and they were close.. I contacted PayPal and they said can’t refund because there is proof that the item was delivered. I sent an email to this Chinese company and told them they are a bunch of thieves..

  8. There are so many forums about yokawa which I discovered way too late (i.e. after I got scammed) they provided paypal with a fake shipping USPS label that showed a package being sent to my name and address, but when I contacted the post office the traking number to which they showed paypal actually went to a different addresss within my town. Paypal doesn’t contact the post office for real proof and once they close your dispute its impossible to reopen it. I disputed it with my credit card company i.e. Discover Card who also closed the dispute as they like paypal take the “proof” of shipment from the vendor and in this case used paypals proof. These financial institutions don’t actually do the due dilligencie of contacting the post office and Yokawa knows this. Thus why they scamp so many:
    https://www.reddit.com/r/Scams/comments/hxz558/never_received_items_from_yokawa_network_limited/

    https://www.reddit.com/r/Scams/comments/j1p6bi/yokawa_network_is_a_scam_company_buyer_beware/

    https://www.paypal-community.com/t5/Disputes-and-Limitations/Yokawa-Network-Limited-Is-a-SCAM/m-p/2591490#M242537

    I’m going to file a report with the USPS for mail fraud.

  9. Same thing happened to me. There must be a way to raise legal action against Facebook and Paypal. Facebook for allowing the ads on our feed and Paypal for allowing the transactions to take place. I saw we move forward with legal action, a civil lawsuit.

  10. i VOTE FOR A CIVIL LAWSUIT AGAINST FACEBOOK AND PAYPAL FOR ALLOWING THESE COMPANIES TO COMMIT FRAUD AGAINST US.

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