EBay Fights Web Fraud Gangs in Romania
Inside the war against online auction fraud
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 26, 2007 4:03 AM CST
An eBay sign outside of the eBay campus in San Jose. EBay is taking the initiative in combating widespread organized internet auction fraud by Romanian criminal gangs.(AP Photo/Tony Avelar)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Internet giant eBay is battling online auction fraud—and the center of the struggle is a Romanian town in the Carpathian mountains. A top eBay investigator, who has US Secret Service protection, forages police files in the region to combat scams. Internet auction fraud is the specialty of Romanian crime gangs, which are part of a hive of organized web crime in Eastern Europe, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Work uncovering the crime is hazardous. "You don't know whom to trust," said the investigator in Romania. "You can't use the hotel phone line. When you step outside, you can spot the local hackers in their cars. The Secret Service agents always book my accommodation and make sure I'm in a room next to them."