From email to RSS: eBay and Paypal scam spam

I never, never, never open an email that claims to be from either eBay or Paypal.


Simple – I get about 3 scam spams supposedly from eBay or Paypal every single day. Every single day.

So I’ll never open another. The scams are just too good. They look like the site they claim to be from. They use the same language as the site they claim to be from. Only if you check very, very careful, by examining the actual URL they propose to take you to will you be able to see if they are scam spams.

You can usually only do that by examing the source of the email – or by clicking to copy the URL of the site they are linking to, and then pasting it somewhere. Both of these are beyond average users, and they’re too much of a PITA for me to do so regularly.

So: if you’re eBay or Paypal, what do you do?

Good question – sucks to be them.

I’m not sure I have the answer. But I wonder if it has to do with feeds.

Not too many years ago, aside from email, the only way a site could inform its visitors of a change or news item was to post it on the site. That might work for continuous, repeat users – if they happen to see it. But it’s not a good solution for people who visit once a month or even less.

Now, however, we have RSS. Now eBay and Paypal – or any website – could notify me of a personalized feed, just for me, whenever I sign up or log in.

I could put that feed in my reader, bloglines, or a desktop equivalent, and be notified whenever there are service issues, or important site news. And I’d get that notification even though I only visit eBay, Paypal, or XYZ site once a month, more or less.

There are issues with this: would people sign up for the feed? And, if they did, would companies ruin it by stuffing it with marketing nonsense? If so, people would soon delete the feed.

But I think it’s worth an option. Because the only other way for eBay or Paypal to get in touch with me today is a personal phone call.

And I don’t think they want to do that.

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Other blogs referencing Paypal/eBay scams
Trabaca, countably infinite, Digg (and the site referenced: Paypalscam), Tribe, PowerSellerKing.

[tags] ebay, paypal, scam, spam, rss, feed, john koetsier [/tags]