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Author Topic: Can a scam be defended against? Probably not...  (Read 380 times)
baracuda
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April 09, 2013, 08:10:12 AM
 #1

I've been reading a number of threads this evening. One that especially caught my attention is the BFL scam thread.

That got me to thinking, is BitCoin the perfect scam currency? If the charges can never be reversed, how do you protect yourself?

Think about cash for a moment, when you walk into a store you will get your food, or items on the spot. If you order something from a store to pick up at a later date, typically you feel secure since that business has taken the time to rent a brick and mortar building they are not going to disappear overnight.

Think about internet transactions, every transaction is done digitally. Paypal, Credit Card, Bank Transfers. These can all be traced, and if a problem occurs, you can file a complaint and get your money back.

Think about bitcoin, once you click send, it's gone. There is nothing you can do. File a complaint... with who? Make a thread about it on bitcointalk? Who cares if thousands of people think you're scamming. If you're selling a product that is just within the realm of believable, you're going to make a killing. $139 for a 4.5 GH miner? (I noticed they raised their prices to $250 or something.)

Heck yea I would buy one today if I could walk into BestBuy, pick it up, and start hashing away tonight. I'd probably buy two.

Anonymous currency (cash) works when doing transactions in person. But, it seems too easy to be scammed online.

Disclaimer: I am mining on two machines 24/7, and I've bought bitcoin for USD, so I do believe in the currency. I'm just concerned.

PHP Developer, learning about BitCoin and other alternative currencies.
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prdkojistic
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April 09, 2013, 08:27:08 AM
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Irreversibility/untracebility can suck when someone steal from you... But on the other side - trusted sellers don't need to worry about chargebacks etc.

1) Send money only to trusted sellers

2) Ensure they are really what they claim to be (search, verify...)

3) Start with smaller transactions if possible

4) Report scams to community
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April 09, 2013, 08:47:25 AM
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Escrow is so essential to low-trust online transactions that it's offered free by many with established reputations.

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April 09, 2013, 09:19:58 AM
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If you're going to send money to somebody, you should expect to lose the money and not get anything in return. If you're lucky, you might get what you paid for. Of course, you can reduce the risk by using an escrow and trading with trusted dealers etc.
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April 09, 2013, 09:44:42 AM
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Thanks for the feedback and thoughts guys. The "escrow" and "trusted dealers" are both reasonable ways to make a hopefully safe exchange, but that isn't something I can see most people adhering to.

I can imagine a situation, when you see a post shared on some social network about some interesting product or deal that seems too good to be true, you do a quick Google search find little or no information, perhaps some grassroots astroturfing, what do you do. Wink I bail, but I suspect a large number of people fall for it.

PHP Developer, learning about BitCoin and other alternative currencies.
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April 09, 2013, 09:54:28 AM
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Thanks for the feedback and thoughts guys. The "escrow" and "trusted dealers" are both reasonable ways to make a hopefully safe exchange, but that isn't something I can see most people adhering to.

I can imagine a situation, when you see a post shared on some social network about some interesting product or deal that seems too good to be true, you do a quick Google search find little or no information, perhaps some grassroots astroturfing, what do you do. Wink I bail, but I suspect a large number of people fall for it.

Skeptics-only currency would be fine by me.  Smiley

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April 09, 2013, 10:12:56 AM
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That seems to be one of bitcoin's problems. Everyone here says, only trade with people you trust or have reputation, while bitcoin itself is built to evade or avoid trust.

I've seen ads that offer 100% anonymous webhosting for bitcoin, just get a temporary IP, pay in bitcoin, set up a website. I'm sure in the future everything shady will be available for bitcoin, like fake identities with manufactured trust, fake physical addresses, phone numbers. If that escalates then being scammed will become a certainty, when everything is real except physical delivery of anything you spend bitcoins on.
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April 09, 2013, 12:31:35 PM
 #8

for a merchant who deals in bitcoin, their reputation is their livelyhood.  This does create a barrier to entry to upstarts.
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