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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Be careful buying Directv receivers on ebay - I bought a stolen unit!


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26 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Shield

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 09:18 AM

Last night a fraud specialist called me from Directv. Apparently the HR21-700 I bought back in early January (which was brand spanking new in the box) was part of a large group (65 units) that was stolen from a Directv warehouse and funneled through ebay.
The lady who called read me back my serial number and activation for verification - I can't believe I have "hot" equipment in my house!
The ebay seller had a high number of feedback, was in the USA, and I even called the guy and spoke to him before I bought it.

The fraud specialist said they weren't sure if Directv / police were going to need the units back for evidence or not.
Be careful out there!

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#2 OFFLINE   jimb726

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 09:22 AM

Another reason why the best place to buy the units is DirecTv themselves or a reputable retailer like BB, Costco, CC, etc. Ebay is neither.
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#3 OFFLINE   Greg Alsobrook

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 09:23 AM

thank you for posting this... this will be a very nice example to show to people when they ask about buying a receiver on ebay...

sorry for the mess you're in... hopefully, if they end up taking your receiver, you will be able to get your money back through paypal...
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#4 OFFLINE   jimb726

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 09:27 AM

thank you for posting this... this will be a very nice example to show to people when they ask about buying a receiver on ebay...

sorry for the mess you're in... hopefully, if they end up taking your receiver, you will be able to get your money back through paypal...

The problem is the OP did all the right things, dealt with a high feedback seller, talked to the seller, etc. In the end the only way to be 100% certain is DirecTv them selves or one of their authorized resellers. One word, if he paid with paypal he can get his money back if he can get a copy of the police report to show it was stolen goods.
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#5 OFFLINE   SParker

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 10:11 AM

Could be the seller was unaware of it being hot as well.

#6 OFFLINE   tcusta00

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 10:18 AM

"Hey, look at this pile of receivers on the back of this open truck... must be free for the takin'."

YOINK!

Or - "Hey buddy, want to buy a pile of DirecTV receivers dirt cheap so you can resell them on eBay for a tidy profit?"

Yeah, could be...

Likely? :scratchin

#7 OFFLINE   Shield

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 10:29 AM

According to the fraud specialist, Directv would replace our units (probably) since there were so many people involved, and it's quite possible the ebay seller was innocent as well. Directv wants us to keep our units obviously since it's $5 for them per month and the replacement fee for 65 units would be high.
Otherwise, I did actually pay with a credit card via Paypal, so maybe if this gets ugly I have some recourse.
Seller's ebay name was "dishworld" FYI.

#8 OFFLINE   rudeney

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 10:30 AM

The seller also could have bought the receivers as part of a “lot” from another seller. I saw a lot of R15’s for sale on eBay just the other day. Many eBay power seller and store owners do this. They look for lots they can afford to invest in and the resell the individual items for a profit.

As for buying and selling D* equipment on eBay, it is against policy (and potentially against the law) to sell or transfer *any* D* equipment unless the seller is an authorized D* retailer. D* claims that their hardware contains “proprietary intellectual property” and they do not allow anyone but their authorized resellers to trade it. I know, I received letters from them when I tried to sell an owned R15. I consulted a lawyer who specialized in IP and he affirmed that they have every right to prevent the sale or transfer of equipment that contains their licensed software.

#9 ONLINE   armophob

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 10:33 AM

I had the same situation with a receiver from another manufacturer. The only way to avoid this is to get the serial # from the seller and call the manufacturer to verify it. If the seller won't give it to you then don't buy it.

#10 OFFLINE   Shield

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 11:08 AM

I had the same situation with a receiver from another manufacturer. The only way to avoid this is to get the serial # from the seller and call the manufacturer to verify it. If the seller won't give it to you then don't buy it.


But, I did call the guy, and it was brand new still sealed in the box! Again, high feedback and had been on ebay since 2006, and was selling lots of slimline dishes and HR21's. He even had the disclaimer that it must be activated by Directv after purchase and it was a "leased" DVR - sorry I've been on ebay since June of 2000 and he passed my BS detector. Nothing else could've been done by me really here. The cost of the receiver was $209; $90 less than I'd have paid Best Buy for one (299 at the time).

I guess what I can come away with is this - call Directv and ask if the person is an authorized Directv reseller first? Perhaps...

#11 OFFLINE   pauper

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 11:13 AM

Has anyone asked whether a seller on E-bay is an authorized reseller of Directv equipment? Directv has no reason to "take care of" the cost to replace the receiver. Buyer is at fault it would seem for NOT using an authorized reseller of DTV equipment. In fact if anything, I'm surprised they are not shutting the box down and forcing him to repurchase.

#12 OFFLINE   phat78boy

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 11:18 AM

Has anyone asked whether a seller on E-bay is an authorized reseller of Directv equipment? Directv has no reason to "take care of" the cost to replace the receiver. Buyer is at fault it would seem for NOT using an authorized reseller of DTV equipment. In fact if anything, I'm surprised they are not shutting the box down and forcing him to repurchase.


IMHO, that would be a horrible business decision. Yes the box was stolen, but in the end it is activated and making a paying customer happy. DirecTV themselves give out HR2x's all the time for free. It would only make sense that they help out someone who is a paying customer and just got duped.

If the poilce required the receivers for evidence, I understand them wanting the boxes back. Doing a swap for those stolen boxes wouldn't cost them much at all. Once trial is over, they would get them returned and simply hand them out as refurbs anyway. Once again, not much of a loss at all for DirecTV.

I am one that is very picky about what I purchase on Ebay. Most the time I can find items online for the same prices that Ebay sellers have them. Even with paypal, I would much rather the piece of mind that comes with paying a premium from a reputable retailer.

#13 OFFLINE   litzdog911

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 11:55 AM

The problem is the OP did all the right things, dealt with a high feedback seller, talked to the seller, etc. In the end the only way to be 100% certain is DirecTv them selves or one of their authorized resellers. One word, if he paid with paypal he can get his money back if he can get a copy of the police report to show it was stolen goods.


Well, the buyer (OP) missed one important step that we always recommend when buying any DirecTV equipment from eBay, Craigslist, etc .... Get the "Receiver ID Number" and verify it yourself with DirecTV.
HD DVRs: HR34-700; HR24-500; (2) HR20-700 + WD eSATA 1TB drive/Antec MX1 case; HR21-700; HR21-200 w/AM21
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#14 OFFLINE   hoopsbwc34

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 11:59 AM

Well, the buyer (OP) missed one important step that we always recommend when buying any DirecTV equipment from eBay, Craigslist, etc .... Get the "Receiver ID Number" and verify it yourself with DirecTV.


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#15 OFFLINE   Canis Lupus

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 12:03 PM

And that's what armophob was referring to in his post above. Get the info in advance. If they don't provide it, move on.

Beat me to it!


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#16 OFFLINE   Azalo

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 12:06 PM

I thought HR2X were $99 from DTV, how is $209 a good deal?

#17 OFFLINE   doctrsnoop

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 12:12 PM

I thought HR2X were $99 from DTV, how is $209 a good deal?


H2x (not HR2x) are 99 dollars. HR21's are now 199 from DTV. The OP I think did this transaction before the price drop from 299.

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#18 OFFLINE   HDTVsportsfan

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 12:16 PM

They are now 199. Back in January they were 299.

The H20's are 99.
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#19 OFFLINE   ricochet

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 12:31 PM

Well, the buyer (OP) missed one important step that we always recommend when buying any DirecTV equipment from eBay, Craigslist, etc .... Get the "Receiver ID Number" and verify it yourself with DirecTV.


DirecTV didn't flag it as stolen when he activated it, so would asking about it before purchase have been any different?

#20 OFFLINE   doctrsnoop

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 12:36 PM

DirecTV didn't flag it as stolen when he activated it, so would asking about it before purchase have been any different?


Wow, great point, and scary too

Nevertheless through dumbluck probably I've had no problems with an H20 and R15 I've bought on ebay. I paid less than 20 bucks each for both of those, though and especially now wouldn't get an HR2x on ebay especially when they are 169 at costco

5 - HR22-100 4 via regular ethernet, 1 via DECA, 2 HR21-700 networked via regular ethernet, HR21-100 networked via DECA, H25-500
R15-500 Inactive, H20-600 (ECO 2.0) inactive,D11 (Humax LD2060) inactive
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