eBay fake PSA slab scam story

5/30/2013 EDIT: New information has come to light that this scammer is NOT Joey Farino. Apologies to Joey for the false accusations. Please see May 30th, 2013 post later in this thread.

Original Post:
I searched "Michael Jordan" PSA 10 on eBay and sorted by "Price: highest first."

One of the first few results was a listing titled "1989 Fleer Michael Jordan PSA 10" that had an image of an 86-87 Fleer PSA 10.

I clicked the auction, saw that it didn't have many hits but that it was actually for a PSA 10 Jordan rookie listed for $7,500 or best offer.

Feeling that nobody had seen this Jordan since the auction was titled wrong I put an offer in for $5,000. Auto-declined. Oh well, one more try for $6,000. Auto-accepted. And I get $100 eBay Bucks? Sweet!

eBay listing link

I immediately pay via PayPal.

Then in my typical horse before the cart manner, I decide to do my homework. Getting that good of a deal on a PSA 10 Jordan rookie didn't seem right. I took the seller's (ev333greencat) name, and location and ran it through trusty spokeo.com to get a phone number, address, age, etc. I called the number which supposedly belonged to a 71 year old man in Colorado. He answers and I ask if he had a Jordan rookie for sale on eBay. He confirms this, I inform him that I paid and he lets me know that he'll get the card shipped asap.

It still didn't seem right to me. I continued my homework and started browsing through the VCP history. When I get to the image of a Jordan sold on 10/10/09 I notice that it has the same serial number as the one I just purchased. I compare the flips and the font is clearly different.

1st image: from VCP
2nd image: from eBay listing
image image

You can see the spacing of the characters is different in each flip.

This all happened yesterday. Fast forward to this morning I get a call from someone claiming to be the son of ev333greencat. He lets me know that the card is going to ship soon. I ask him where he got the card and he says a show. I then tell him my suspicions regarding the different looking flip. He seems caught off guard and confused but I play it safe and don't accuse him of anything. I ask him for his e-mail address to send him a picture of the VCP image I was referring to. He gives me his e-mail address, [email protected], and I send him the picture. While he is rambling about how he knows cards and knows the Jordan is real, I Google his e-mail address and find these posts...

image

I ask him why he doesn't have his own eBay account and he has no real answer. He offers to send another photo of him holding the card...

image

He tells me that he will refund the money but would like me to leave positive feedback. This is obviously just another red flag to me. I get off the phone with the intention of calling ev333greencat when I got the chance. Within a few minutes I receive an e-mail from ev333greencat,


Dear Sir, Let me apologize for any inconvenience you experienced with the Michael Jordan card. To be honest, that card was not mine and I was selling it as a favor and cut for a person who is actually in California. So, I am not really privy to any information about it and have never seen it. He was going to drop-ship it from there. So, what exactly was the problem? I will be refunding your account with Paypal as soon as they release the funds to me. I had a problem because I had two accounts with them and needed to verify the account that had the funds in it. They said that it would take 2-3 days to get the account verified. Again, I am very sorry for this and assure you that I will make sure of anything else that sell under my name because I want to maintain the highest standards possible. Cordially, ev333greencat


I follow up with a phone call to the seller and ask him how he knows [email protected] He states that he does not know the person that claimed to be his son, he met him by responding to an ad like the one I found in the Google search. I explained to him that he was close to being one of two victims in a scam and he was relieved that I was able to thwart it. I then walked him through the steps of refunding the money and he did so immediately.

I kept looking into it and found the following net54 post which ties the [email protected] e-mail address to a known scammer using the name Joey Farino and/or Sam.


net54 Joey Farino link

Not being very active as of late I missed out on the posts about this guy, like this one by mrmint23 referencing the same net54 post I found.

mrmint23's post

I figured I'd try to create some awareness about one of this guy's many scams. I don't know if anybody else experienced a similar situation with him but I would like it if nobody had to.

I know he'll probably read this. If anybody has any suggestions on what to do legally, please PM me.

Text
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Comments

  • Off the charts.
  • 1980scollector1980scollector Posts: 2,036 ✭✭✭
    <------ Grabs popcorn and waiting for Mrmint.


    The good news is that you got your money back.


    The bad news is Jboog has graduated from idiot to scammer.



    ** Working on the following sets-2013 Spectra Football Hall of Fame 50th Anniversary Autograph set, 2015 Spectra Football Illustrious Legends Autograph set, 2014-15 Hall of Fame Heroes autograph set. **
  • CWCW Posts: 1,107 ✭✭✭
    Wow. I purchased a '53 Mantle from him months ago, but the holder
    and flip were legit (he had bought the same card on eBay a couple
    weeks prior for $50 more). It's somewhat easy to believe he'd be
    tied up with a scam such as this.

    Thanks for the heads up and good detective work!



  • brendanb438brendanb438 Posts: 1,586 ✭✭✭
    If anyone has all this guys personal info please PM it to me. I have a buddy in the FBI out of Cincinnati and would love to forward this guys info. Also Joey if you are still lurking here and reading this I look forward to bringing some heat down on ya. image
  • DboneesqDboneesq Posts: 18,066
    ERGO ... glad you got your money back and outed this scam artist!
    STAY HEALTHY!

    Doug

    It was tough having to sell almost my entire collection of ~1,700 PSA graded cards from the 1910s - 1970's and my ~250 - 300 Graded Packs from the 50s, 60s and 70s. But when your daughter AND your wife are diagnosed with Cancer, sometimes you don't have a choice. One day I'll get some of them back!
  • Wow, crazy, unreal. Good investigative work. Did you also back-inform paypal and ebay about this? I am assuming you did. Just curious what their response (or lack there of) turned out to be in this situation. Meatloaf
  • I saw this in the response --> for a person who is actually in California.

    Did you get any pertinent information ? I had someone named Jeremy Felenchak try to pull the fake slab scam.
    He had a '54 Aaron PSA 7, '52 Topps Mantle PSA 4, and a Clemente RC PSA 6, all fake. Same gig, selling for a friend and
    he sent me photos of him holding the card.
    Collecting ...
    Well Centered PSA 8 Mantle's
    Nolan Ryan PSA 10s
    Mike Schmidt PSA 10s
  • So the entire card and holder and flip are counterfeit? This is frightening, it seems like if he didn't screw the flip printing up, you would have at least let him mail it to you. This is a high end scam, and almost certainly not his first sale.
  • Different bar code, different print font, top row typing lines up differently with the bottom row on both. We're starting to see too many of these.
    Thanks for the information and research on your part.

    Anyone with good insight into what their process is for creating the fake slabs ?
    Sad part is that the '52 Mantle PSA 4 that was fake, and this card, and many many others are still out there and are not destroyed. Do you see these resurface from time to time ?

    Collecting ...
    Well Centered PSA 8 Mantle's
    Nolan Ryan PSA 10s
    Mike Schmidt PSA 10s
  • yankeeno7yankeeno7 Posts: 9,098 ✭✭✭
    Unfortunately you cant see if the "PSA" logo is in the bottom right of the slab. These could be generic slabs that someone is having made. If someone is actually making the plastic with the PSA logo, they could be in a lot more trouble then they bargained for.
    Some people are like slinkies..Not really good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when you push one down a flight of stairs.

    yup
  • vladguerrerovladguerrero Posts: 4,083 ✭✭✭


    << <i>Unfortunately you cant see if the "PSA" logo is in the bottom right of the slab. These could be generic slabs that someone is having made. If someone is actually making the plastic with the PSA logo, they could be in a lot more trouble then they bargained for. >>



    The PSA name on the flip isn't enough?
  • nightcrawlernightcrawler Posts: 5,216


    << <i>Unfortunately you cant see if the "PSA" logo is in the bottom right of the slab. These could be generic slabs that someone is having made. If someone is actually making the plastic with the PSA logo, they could be in a lot more trouble then they bargained for. >>




    I'm pretty sure I can see the P where it should be on the slab.

    Slabs can easily be removed from a card without any noticable damage or cracking. So as awesome as it is that the OP caught this, the problem won't go away.


    Props to ergoism, and mrmint23 too. image
    image
  • jmmiller777jmmiller777 Posts: 1,318 ✭✭✭


    << <i>Wow, crazy, unreal. Good investigative work. Did you also back-inform paypal and ebay about this? I am assuming you did. Just curious what their response (or lack there of) turned out to be in this situation. Meatloaf >>




    Wow, you do need to call paypal. I had a recent issue and was surprised I could call and get right thru. Do it. Thinking back, I have had issues with starman123 in the past, got it cleared up, but now am wondering if I have some phoney-baloney cards in fake holders or something. You did a great job, played your cards well and are really lucky you got your cash back. Great job.
    CURRENT PROJECTS IN WORK:
    To be honest, no direction, but...
    1966-69 Topps EX+
    1975 minis NrMt Kelloggs PSA 9
    All Topps Heritage-Master Sets
    image
  • TNP777TNP777 Posts: 5,676 ✭✭✭
  • yankeeno7yankeeno7 Posts: 9,098 ✭✭✭


    << <i>

    << <i>Unfortunately you cant see if the "PSA" logo is in the bottom right of the slab. These could be generic slabs that someone is having made. If someone is actually making the plastic with the PSA logo, they could be in a lot more trouble then they bargained for. >>



    The PSA name on the flip isn't enough? >>



    Probably not because it is not a logo. Although, if the logo on the back of the flip is copied, then yes. There are other companies who use the acronym "PSA" so just plain printed letters would probably not hold up.
    Some people are like slinkies..Not really good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when you push one down a flight of stairs.

    yup
  • scashaggyscashaggy Posts: 1,101 ✭✭✭
    Wow...good work.

    So basically this scammer finds unsuspecting ebay sellers to wash his bogus cards for him.
  • Hank36Hank36 Posts: 174
    I guess I have to ask--forgive my ignorance, but just for my future reference:

    I understand how the scammer is using other Ebay sellers as strawpeople to scam buyers, but exactly what is the scam? Is the idea that he will collect the $6,000 cash from Paypal before the buyer disputes the transaction, leaving Paypal to refund the purchase price to the buyer and sticking the strawperson for the $6,000, or is the idea that the buyer will receive a PSA card in a illegitimate slab with a phony grade and (possibly) never know the difference?

    I guess that the type of scam I'm more used to encountering on Ebay is where somebody (often in the far east) sells a counterfeit item at a greatly reduced price--a reading of the fine print in the listing will often sidestep any actual indication or acknowledgement that the item is legitimate. But passing off a bogus item as legitimate and selling it for a premium to a sophisticated buyer (as in this case) just doesn't seem to be much of a worthwhile scam--unless, as I theorized, the scammer is able to make off with the cash and the real dupe is not the buyer, but his or her strawperson. Am I understanding this correctly, or has somebody indeed managed to come up with a counterfeit PSA slab that can pass careful scrutiny--unless, as in this case, the buyer is able to dig up a scan of the original card registered with that number?

  • This is becoming a "use to be hobby" really quickly; something has to change!


  • << <i>I guess I have to ask--forgive my ignorance, but just for my future reference:

    I understand how the scammer is using other Ebay sellers as strawpeople to scam buyers, but exactly what is the scam? Is the idea that he will collect the $6,000 cash from Paypal before the buyer disputes the transaction, leaving Paypal to refund the purchase price to the buyer and sticking the strawperson for the $6,000, or is the idea that the buyer will receive a PSA card in a illegitimate slab with a phony grade and (possibly) never know the difference?

    I guess that the type of scam I'm more used to encountering on Ebay is where somebody (often in the far east) sells a counterfeit item at a greatly reduced price--a reading of the fine print in the listing will often sidestep any actual indication or acknowledgement that the item is legitimate. But passing off a bogus item as legitimate and selling it for a premium to a sophisticated buyer (as in this case) just doesn't seem to be much of a worthwhile scam--unless, as I theorized, the scammer is able to make off with the cash and the real dupe is not the buyer, but his or her strawperson. Am I understanding this correctly, or has somebody indeed managed to come up with a counterfeit PSA slab that can pass careful scrutiny--unless, as in this case, the buyer is able to dig up a scan of the original card registered with that number? >>



    He probably has the guy pay him cash after the paypal clears to their account.

    Some people probably wouldn't catch the card is a fake so it works out for him...
  • ergoismergoism Posts: 314 ✭✭✭


    << <i>I guess I have to ask--forgive my ignorance, but just for my future reference:

    I understand how the scammer is using other Ebay sellers as strawpeople to scam buyers, but exactly what is the scam? Is the idea that he will collect the $6,000 cash from Paypal before the buyer disputes the transaction, leaving Paypal to refund the purchase price to the buyer and sticking the strawperson for the $6,000, or is the idea that the buyer will receive a PSA card in a illegitimate slab with a phony grade and (possibly) never know the difference?

    I guess that the type of scam I'm more used to encountering on Ebay is where somebody (often in the far east) sells a counterfeit item at a greatly reduced price--a reading of the fine print in the listing will often sidestep any actual indication or acknowledgement that the item is legitimate. But passing off a bogus item as legitimate and selling it for a premium to a sophisticated buyer (as in this case) just doesn't seem to be much of a worthwhile scam--unless, as I theorized, the scammer is able to make off with the cash and the real dupe is not the buyer, but his or her strawperson. Am I understanding this correctly, or has somebody indeed managed to come up with a counterfeit PSA slab that can pass careful scrutiny--unless, as in this case, the buyer is able to dig up a scan of the original card registered with that number? >>



    The eBay seller told me that the scammer was asking him to send him the majority of the funds, I'm pretty sure via wire, as soon as I paid. The seller had just set up his PayPal account so he was waiting for the tiny PayPal deposits to verify before he could move the money out.
    There really would be two victims in the scam and that could go down to one if PayPal refunded the transaction after the seller paid the scammer. The part that scares me is the fake slabs and unsuspecting buyers that could just be throwing them in their collection. I think this would be really hard to do with a BGS slab. PSA needs to evolve one of these days before too many of their customers are taken advantage of. Like you said, if I didn't find that scan of the original serial, I likely wouldn't have caught it.
  • Hank36Hank36 Posts: 174
    Let's say I buy a card in a fake slab. It comes in the mail, I look at it, and don't suspect a thing, but when I attempt to add the card to one of my sets on the registry, it comes up as being somebody else's card. Assuming that the previous owner simply hasn't gotten around to deleting it from their registry, I send off a request to PSA with a scan or photo of my card/slab. Is the owner of the actual card then given the opportunity to make a case to PSA that he or she still owns the card, or will PSA look at my scan and simply go into the registry and start hitting the delete key?

    In other words, can this aspect of the PSA registry be used to somehow expose any such fake slabs to an otherwise unsuspecting buyer?
  • goraidersgoraiders Posts: 2,166 ✭✭✭

    After Keith called this guy out for bs,I actually bought a Ted Williams from him while that was going on.I recived my card
    and know its good,but like others could not figure out his buy high,sell low,I think somebody mentioned using ebays
    cc with the bill me later option.I would never think this kid was smart enough to try and pull off a scam like this,so
    glad the op didnt get hit for 5g's!
    J.R.
    Needs'
    1972 Football-9's high#'s
    1965 Football-8's
    1958 Topps FB-7-8
  • JaktJakt Posts: 579


    << <i>Let's say I buy a card in a fake slab. It comes in the mail, I look at it, and don't suspect a thing, but when I attempt to add the card to one of my sets on the registry, it comes up as being somebody else's card. Assuming that the previous owner simply hasn't gotten around to deleting it from their registry, I send off a request to PSA with a scan or photo of my card/slab. Is the owner of the actual card then given the opportunity to make a case to PSA that he or she still owns the card, or will PSA look at my scan and simply go into the registry and start hitting the delete key? In other words, can this aspect of the PSA registry be used to somehow expose any such fake slabs to an otherwise unsuspecting buyer? >>



    Excellent question. I would actually like to hear an answer to this one. It really upsets me that the integrity of the slab can be so easily compromised putting a good amount of my collection in jeopardy.
    I'm building a 1968 and a 1970 Topps set. I have lots of 1970s and 1960s to offer in trade.
  • On the rare occasion where I've sold a card and forgotten to delete it from my registry, the email that gets triggered informs the original cardholder to delete it from their registry or to contact PSA immediately if they still have the card in question. I would assume that it a determination can't be made by the scans of the cards they would have both card owners send in their slab and destroy the fake/reimburse the buyer who was harmed.
    I collect Cal Ripken cards, T206, E95, E210, R319.
  • JaktJakt Posts: 579


    << <i>I would assume that it a determination can't be made by the scans of the cards they would have both card owners send in their slab and destroy the fake/reimburse the buyer who was harmed. >>



    This would be very difficult to enforce. Who would shoulder the expense of sending the cards in? What would motivate the original owner to do so? What if the original owner had the card for years and paid a lot of money for it, would he be reimbursed? There are too many variables for this situation.

    The fake slabs that might be floating around in people's collections, the new ones that will be circulating soon are really taking a toll on the levels of confidence for the future of graded cards. Right now, PSA has the weakest slab of all the credible grading companies and ironically, the most credibility in the industry. BVG/BGS has the best slabs followed by SGC. What will it take for PSA to follow suit and make theirs more fraud resistant?
    I'm building a 1968 and a 1970 Topps set. I have lots of 1970s and 1960s to offer in trade.
  • CakesCakes Posts: 2,272 ✭✭✭


    << <i>What will it take for PSA to follow suit and make theirs more fraud resistant? >>



    Man I don't know but it scares the hell out of me, I actually have a couple of cards bought online that I need to inspect better.
    Successful coin BST transactions with Gerard and segoja.

    Successful card BST transactions with cbcnow, brogurt, gstarling, Bravesfan 007, and rajah 424.


  • << <i>On the rare occasion where I've sold a card and forgotten to delete it from my registry, the email that gets triggered informs the original cardholder to delete it from their registry or to contact PSA immediately if they still have the card in question. I would assume that it a determination can't be made by the scans of the cards they would have both card owners send in their slab and destroy the fake/reimburse the buyer who was harmed. >>



    This has happened to me. Everything stated above is correct except the reimbursement part. This situation gets turned over from the PSA Registry group to the PSA Ops Manager. If, after physical inspection, your card is fake or in a tampered holder, you receive notification. PSA will NOT reimburse the owner of a fake card or in a fake/compromised holder. The owner of the fake card/holder only has recourse with the indivdual that sold them the card. PSA may regrade the card with your approval.
    Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all "right-thinking" people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

    This is known as “bad luck.”
  • Pre72Pre72 Posts: 217
    The question is why doesn't PSA take a picture of any newly graded card valued at say $500 or more so you can look it up in there database to compare before you buy? Much like JSA does with there autos.


    Always looking for Vintage Yankees & NASCAR


    Eric
  • originalisbestoriginalisbest Posts: 5,638 ✭✭✭✭


    << <i>

    << <i>What will it take for PSA to follow suit and make theirs more fraud resistant? >>



    Man I don't know but it scares the hell out of me, I actually have a couple of cards bought online that I need to inspect better. >>



    Big +1 to this notion -- PSA needs to step way the heck up and improve the tamper-resistant nature of their product. It is very weak and prone to manipulation by scammers.
  • digicatdigicat Posts: 8,686 ✭✭
    Until PSA starts to experience some sort of financial harm due to faking of their slabs (e.g. loss of graded market share), they won't invest the money to correct this problem.
    My Giants collection want list

    WTB: 2001 Leaf Rookies & Stars Longevity: Ryan Jensen #/25
  • jradke4jradke4 Posts: 3,477 ✭✭✭


    << <i>The question is why doesn't PSA take a picture of any newly graded card valued at say $500 or more so you can look it up in there database to compare before you buy? Much like JSA does with there autos. >>



    read the new submission forms. it appears that they are doing this. i think its two fold, one for this purpose and others like it and the second is so they can use images of our cards in adds.

    from the fine print..."11. In the ordinary course of its grading opera­ tions, PSA (i) compiles data regarding each card submitted for grading, including, but not limited to, data relating to the identity, production, condi­ tion and grade of the card (the “Data”); and (ii) may take, or have taken, one or more digital or other types of photographs, images or reproductions of each such card (collectively, the “Images”). In con­ sideration for the grading services being provided by PSA, Customer, on behalf of itself and any third party for whom Customer may be acting, hereby authorizes PSA (i) to compile and maintain such Data with respect to each card submitted here­ under for grading; and (ii) to take, or cause to be taken, one or more Images of each such card, and further agrees that PSA will be the owner of such Data and all such Images and that PSA may use and exploit such Data and the Images for commercial and any other purposes, as PSA in its sole discre­ tion deems appropriate, including, but not limited to, the publication and republication or reproduc­ tion in or on any media, of such Data and Images. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, Customer, on behalf of itself and any third party for
    whom Customer may be acting with respect to this agreement, unconditionally and irrevocably trans­ fers, conveys and assigns to PSA any and all current and any hereafter acquired rights, title and interests (including, without limitation, rights in copyright, patent, trade secret and trademark) that Customer or any such third party may have in or to the Data and the Images (on whatever media or in whatever form such Images may be reproduced or published)."
    Packers Fan for Life
    Collecting:
    Brett Favre Master Set
    Favre Ticket Stubs
    Favre TD Reciever Autos
    Football HOF Player/etc. Auto Set
    Football HOF Rc's
  • ergoismergoism Posts: 314 ✭✭✭
    The scammer in this story is one of the biggest the hobby has ever seen. I gathered much more information about him after I found him again by chance after exchanging e-mails about a potential large transaction. I've connected him to multiple alts on CU, net54, and blowoutcards. He has become better over the years and is now perfectly replicating PSA slabs. It's believed that he is operating out of Mexico and will be very hard to stop. He was the ring leader of the Cyrus Stivers case and Stivers never even met him nor knows who he is. He does everything from out of the country and uses other people as pawns, some of them don't even know they're selling fraudulent or stolen cards.
    His best scam is putting authentic, trimmed/altered/lower grade cards into fake PSA slabs. These things look scary legit.
    If you have ever dealt with this person, it's highly likely what you received was either stolen or counterfeit.
    I've connected him to the following scams:


    http://www.blowoutcards.com/forums/football/466880-guess-mr-rodgers-superfractor-staying-stunning-20-000-psa-fakes-cant-fool-me-1.html

    http://www.net54baseball.com/showthread.php?t=92552

    http://www.blowoutcards.com/forums/basketball/444316-lebron-exquisite-rc-patch-auto-bgs-9-86-99-robbed.html

    All of the following are likely banned or inactive now but here's some of his various alts (I'll update this list as I learn more):
    net54 = sportscollector, sam1952
    blowoutcards = supercollector2012, expertcollector
    CU = sam1952

    eBay ids: reedca76, moderncollector2012, encapsulated_icons, top_shelf_cards, highest-grade, raresportscardsrus, ldwight2012, supercoolguy2000, goldinvester2000, sportskings9999
  • wrestlingcardkingwrestlingcardking Posts: 4,307 ✭✭✭
    Wow, thanks for the insight Ergo!
    BUYING Frank Gotch T229 Kopec
    Looking to BUY n332 1889 SF Hess cards and high grade cards from 19th century especially. "Once you have wrestled everything else in life is easy" Dan Gable
  • ReggieClevelandReggieCleveland Posts: 3,089 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I remember seeing a thread on Blowout about someone that was selling high-dollar/high-grade cards in fake PSA slabs. The quality was pretty darn good, I would say good enough to fool the majority of hobbyists, especially considering that most people don't inspect the slab under a loupe when they get the card. The level of involvement was rather upsetting, both in the number of fakes being produced and the varying categories of the hobby that they covered. I feel bad saying this, but my first thought was "thank god I don't collect high grade cards."


  • << <i>He has become better over the years and is now perfectly replicating PSA slabs. >>


    This is an extremely irresponsible statement. From what I've seen, all of the "craigslist" cards are in legit PSA holders that have been compromised and show at least one heavily frosted edge. And they all have a fake PSA label with the wrong font. The font has gotten a little better over time but it is still easily recognizable as being fake.

    Nobody is "perfectly replicating PSA slabs".
  • begsu1013begsu1013 Posts: 1,953 ✭✭
    hey guys,

    new poster here. aggressively invested in mantle/ryan/rose high grades, but thought i'd share an "actual" helpful tip on thwarting this part of the scam vs regurgitating the "buy the card, not the grade" or the "if a deal's too good to be true crap". and...it's an easy one if you have a quote, unquote "smart phone", best part of it all...doesnt cost a thing.

    this is the answer for the actual fake slabs that are floating around out there.

    download the app "red laser". it's a itf bar code scanner and yes, it's free. side note: it's hands down better than any of the ones that cost $2.99. fyi: "itf" is the type of bar code that are on psa slabs and stands for "interleaved two of five".

    use this app to scan the bar code. the actual bar code number that is read on the app should be the same as what's listed on the slab. if it's anything different, then stay away/or you're screwed.

    it takes a little adjusting to be able to get it to read off of ebay/online but definitely worth getting down if you are gonna be shucking out some mass duckets on some cardboard.

    scanned a 52' topps mathews psa 7 recently that looked a little suspicious, and app came up w/ different number. for sh!ts and giggles i went to the psa site and entered in that number. came up as a 55 topps lopez psa 5. same thing w/ the jordan rc psa 10 that was listed on ebay about a month ago...and right before christmas nevertheless!

    now, psa has it's flaws. but seriously, who here doesnt? and if anyone there is reading this or this comes across orlando's desk, fwd the tip and do a mass notification. but, i own 2 businesses and understand the concept of keeping overhead down, but how about outsource an office (of 1) to china (avg household income is $2100) and "pay" someone to scan online certs all day and report ones to ebay or whoever that come up fraudulent. these cards would go away quite quickly.

    hopefully this helps at least 1 person.

    "...and knowing is half the battle"

    -Bob

    btw: need a 1971 psa 9 of ryan and rose. legit ones.



    "i'm gonna tell you something. somebody messes with me, i'm gonna mess with him. somebody steals from me, i'm gonna say you stole. not talk to him for spitting on the sidewalk. understand? now, i have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income cat incident. to speak to me like a man, no. to harass a peaceful man. i pray to god if i ever had a grievance i'd have a little more self respect!"

  • PMKAYPMKAY Posts: 1,387 ✭✭


    << <i>scanned a 52' topps mathews psa 7 recently that looked a little suspicious, and app came up w/ different number. for sh!ts and giggles i went to the psa site and entered in that number. came up as a 55 topps lopez psa 5 >>



    Could you not have done that without the scanning part?
  • begsu1013begsu1013 Posts: 1,953 ✭✭
    guess i coulda been a little clearer....let me help put two and two together.

    there is the actual cert number on the card. then there is the bar code. when you scan the bar code on an legit card, it pulls up the actual cert number that's on the card onto your phone.

    so when i scanned a fake one, the actual cert number on the card was completely different than what was listed on the actual fake slab.

    to reiterate:

    vaild card's cert number would be 12345678 on the psa slab and 12345678 would pull up on the phones app

    fake card's cert number would be 12345678 on the psa slab BUT 01369101 would pull up on the phones app

    "i'm gonna tell you something. somebody messes with me, i'm gonna mess with him. somebody steals from me, i'm gonna say you stole. not talk to him for spitting on the sidewalk. understand? now, i have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income cat incident. to speak to me like a man, no. to harass a peaceful man. i pray to god if i ever had a grievance i'd have a little more self respect!"

  • ReggieClevelandReggieCleveland Posts: 3,089 ✭✭✭✭✭
    So a photocopy of a real barcode wouldn't bring up the same cert #?
  • begsu1013begsu1013 Posts: 1,953 ✭✭
    the slabs they are using arent copies of real ones, thus the bar code is different. even the fonts are off if you look close enough. they ARE, however using real cert numbers, but i guess didnt use the real bar codes. the cert numbers are easy to obtain from websites, publications, etc....however hard to pull, copy and reprint the legit bar code, i guess.

    "i'm gonna tell you something. somebody messes with me, i'm gonna mess with him. somebody steals from me, i'm gonna say you stole. not talk to him for spitting on the sidewalk. understand? now, i have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income cat incident. to speak to me like a man, no. to harass a peaceful man. i pray to god if i ever had a grievance i'd have a little more self respect!"

  • mlbfan2mlbfan2 Posts: 3,118 ✭✭✭


    << <i>the slabs they are using arent copies of real ones, thus the bar code is different. even the fonts are off if you look close enough. they ARE, however using real cert numbers, but i guess didnt use the real bar codes. the cert numbers are easy to obtain from websites, publications, etc....however hard to pull, copy and reprint the legit bar code, i guess. >>



    It might be hard to copy the bar code, but it's certainly not impossible. Here's an example of two different cards with the same bar code.

    (the ones at the bottom)
    image
  • begsu1013begsu1013 Posts: 1,953 ✭✭
    not sure which was was fake on the bottom pics and the certs do look the same to the naked eye, but i couldnt even get the one on the left to scan. one on the right scanned and beeped pretty easily even though the picture was tilted and w/ less resolution.

    have absolutely no clue how the technology of the bar codes work, but i imagine that the width between each line coupled w. the thickness and overall pattern determine the scan. with that being said, if its off by a little bit then i imagine that would alter the capability of it being scanned. this card on the left is the 1st that has stumped the bar code scanner...


    i think i'm liking this method even more now....but please, send some more tests. let's put this theory thru the proverbial wash!

    "i'm gonna tell you something. somebody messes with me, i'm gonna mess with him. somebody steals from me, i'm gonna say you stole. not talk to him for spitting on the sidewalk. understand? now, i have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income cat incident. to speak to me like a man, no. to harass a peaceful man. i pray to god if i ever had a grievance i'd have a little more self respect!"

  • mlbfan2mlbfan2 Posts: 3,118 ✭✭✭


    << <i>not sure which was was fake on the bottom pics and the certs do look the same to the naked eye, but i couldnt even get the one on the left to scan. one on the right scanned and beeped pretty easily even though the picture was tilted and w/ less resolution.

    have absolutely no clue how the technology of the bar codes work, but i imagine that the width between each line couple w. the thickness and overall pattern determine the scan. with that being said, if its off by a little bit then i imagine that would alter the capability of it being scanned. this card on the left is the 1st that has stumped the bar code scanner...

    i'm liking this method even more now.... >>



    According to the photo, both cards are fake. Not sure about the labels though.
  • begsu1013begsu1013 Posts: 1,953 ✭✭
    they both ARE fakes. forgot to say, when scanned it comes up with cert # 01122220

    Item with Cert Number 01122220: 1965 TOPPS 8 N.L. ERA LEADERS S.KOUFAX/D.DRYSDALE 7 0101650080 $30.00

    makes sense considering mass production and all!


    this is the answer. (temporarily, at least)

    "i'm gonna tell you something. somebody messes with me, i'm gonna mess with him. somebody steals from me, i'm gonna say you stole. not talk to him for spitting on the sidewalk. understand? now, i have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income cat incident. to speak to me like a man, no. to harass a peaceful man. i pray to god if i ever had a grievance i'd have a little more self respect!"

  • Dpeck100Dpeck100 Posts: 10,158 ✭✭✭✭✭


    << <i>they both ARE fakes. forgot to say, when scanned it comes up with cert # 01122220

    Item with Cert Number 01122220: 1965 TOPPS 8 N.L. ERA LEADERS S.KOUFAX/D.DRYSDALE 7 0101650080 $30.00

    makes sense considering mass production and all!


    this is the answer. (temporarily, at least) >>





    Nice to see you finally joined Bob! Cool information.
  • begsu1013begsu1013 Posts: 1,953 ✭✭
    thanks david! hope you had a good holiday run!!!

    figured, i needed to pass this info on for all of us, really.

    anyways, here's the card that started it all for me:

    ebay item # 321268230510, a 1960 mantle, psa 9 slab cert # 02032198.

    submitted a somewhat low ball ($7800, right at smr), best offer and won it (1st red flag). was thrilled...for a sec.

    then looked at other items blowout sold and didnt really coincide w/ their day to day sales. (2nd red flag)

    scanned it and came up with cert # 01111127. which is really an 88 topps glossy mcgwire psa 7 (obvious red flag)

    luckily i did my due diligence, talked w/ the guys at blowout and they agreed to postpone the sale and send it back to psa...

    still no answer to the confirmation of it's authenticity, but assuming the value of the card and psa's time commitment of a card of said value, we woulda had an answer by now.

    for the record, they were quite pleasant and professional in handling the matter. i'm just hoping blowout didnt get burned though...

    still bummed about not getting the deal, but damn glad i didnt get burned.

    which brings me to my next question: is anyone keeping an online date base of all the fake certs/cards? seems like a good idea to start one if it hadnt been done yet...

    "i'm gonna tell you something. somebody messes with me, i'm gonna mess with him. somebody steals from me, i'm gonna say you stole. not talk to him for spitting on the sidewalk. understand? now, i have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income cat incident. to speak to me like a man, no. to harass a peaceful man. i pray to god if i ever had a grievance i'd have a little more self respect!"

  • ClockworkAngelClockworkAngel Posts: 1,995 ✭✭✭
    I wanted to bring this thread back to the top and share a story with everyone that falls right in line with everything else reported.

    Last month there was a PSA 10 Joe Montana Rookie on eBay at a Buy it Now price of $5500. It hadn't even been listed an hour when I saw it. The last Montana 10 sold for close to 11K (I believe through Heritage) So there's red flag #1. It was from a seller that I did not recognize and had never sold a card on eBay before. Red Flag #2. The 11K Montana was not on VCP yet and I figured perhaps the seller just did not know. I called eBay to clarify eBay protection and to make sure I was 100% protected. After feeling comfortable that I was, I bought it, figuring it was worth the chance. The scan was good and the card certainly looked like it could be a 10 and the cert # checked out on the PSA web site.

    The card and case arrived slightly cracked open on the bottom of the slab. So that's when I pretty much knew I was not going to "get lucky" on this one. I made an appointment to hand deliver it to PSA. I worked with Joe Orlando's assistant, Jackie. She was very nice, informative, and helpful. She brought it back and had a senior grader and Mr. Orlando look at it and verified it is a forged slab. The card is real, but the slab was not. The bar code was a 1979 OPC Gretzky of all things. For obvious reasons, they could not give me the card in the case back, so I just got the card, a letter from Joe stating it is fake, various scans, etc. The Montana card had some obvious flaws that would likely make it an 8...but they were hard to see in the case.

    The seller was quite cooperative, much to my surprise, and my refund was credited last week. I would guess he was the victim that bought the card the first time, but what gets me is that the case was cracked open when I got it, and the seller supposedly had no clue, saying it was fine when he sent it.

    Not sure if I should report this seller or not. I am shocked at how easy it was to get the refund...makes me wonder if he is a victim or a criminal here...?


    The Clockwork Angel Collection...brought to you by Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Chase
    TheClockworkAngelCollection
  • gregmo32gregmo32 Posts: 2,690 ✭✭✭
    I would report him. He said exactly what he should say if he is a crook, but not also an idiot.
    I am buying and trading for RC's of Wilt Chamberlain, George Mikan, Bill Russell, Oscar Robertson, Jerry West, and Bob Cousy!
    Don't waste your time and fees listing on ebay before getting in touch me by PM or at [email protected] !
  • addicted2ebayaddicted2ebay Posts: 1,851 ✭✭✭
    The seller changed there feedback to private.... they probably read this and are now hiding. Guilty move IMO.
    ebay mobile sucks
  • begsu1013begsu1013 Posts: 1,953 ✭✭
    yep. different bar code vs cert number on slab. telling you guys, download that cert scanner and be safe every time not to mention save yourself an a$$ ton of time and headaches!!!

    it's free. why wouldnt you?

    "i'm gonna tell you something. somebody messes with me, i'm gonna mess with him. somebody steals from me, i'm gonna say you stole. not talk to him for spitting on the sidewalk. understand? now, i have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income cat incident. to speak to me like a man, no. to harass a peaceful man. i pray to god if i ever had a grievance i'd have a little more self respect!"

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