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Author Topic: Customer refund?  (Read 19010 times)

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« Reply #25 on: October 07, 2008, 09:52 »
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The speculation that they may still use the file is invalidated by our experience so far. Yes, one in a million might do it, but there are plenty of penalties to enforce if that happens.

Thanks for contributing to this thread, Achilles. However, I disagree with the above statement. I (and a handful of other photographers/artists) are having a serious problem over at BigStockPhoto with fraudulent downloads. In each case, the thief buys up hundreds of dollars worth of images, and is long gone before the credit card is identified as stolen. But they still got the images, and they re-upload them to all the micro stock sites under different usernames.

Basically, I'm just trying to point out that there are many thieves out there who are using stolen credit cards to purchase images, and they don't care one bit about the "penalties" for reselling the images. Heck...are there even penalties for that? What happens to these thieves when they get caught? Based on my own personal experience with these thieves, nothing happens, and they just move on to the next site.

In my eyes: "invalidated" downloads = THEFT.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2008, 09:55 by Norebbo »


« Reply #26 on: October 07, 2008, 16:33 »
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Norebbo,

I think the problem to be addressed in BigStock (and anywhere else) is forcing the credit card transaction authorization prior to let the buyer start downloading.  As discussed in another thread a while ago, about FT, like in any (or most) online purchase, "deliver" should only occur after this authorization by the CC company.

The scenario you are describing (thieves reselling images) is not impeded by legal purchases - remember the case of images dld'ed from SS and uploaded to DT (I think).  Or possibly sold in CDs.

And even if the microstock company "swallows" the finacial loss, not punishing the photographer, the illegal after-sales activity would still be possible.

I agree however that "penalties" are very unlikely. There is a site in UK using one of my images (read here), how can I stop that other then asking them to purchase a license or delete it?

The only way to minimize this risk, I think, would be the CC authorization.  And also not having subscriptions.

Regards,
Adelaide

« Reply #27 on: October 08, 2008, 12:51 »
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I will never understand an image "return". DVDs, music CD's... whatever... they are unable to be returned because common sense tells you how easy it is to steal & return. How obvious is it that image should fall under the same category? Only exception to the rule: an obvious double click of the same image or something extremely similair. 

I wish DT the best in attempting to control this potential monster!

« Reply #28 on: October 20, 2008, 09:09 »
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I just received a mail regarding a refund due to fraud on a credit sale made on July 25th. 

While I can understand a refund in the case of fraud, it seems extremely strange for this to be detected so late and a refund to be taken almost 3 months after the sale.   

This is my first refund at Dreamstime and although I have experienced a few with other agencies they always were related to sales made in the previous few weeks.  Has anybody had similar experiences?

« Reply #29 on: October 20, 2008, 09:23 »
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I got this email today:

"Due to reasons which are beyond our control, we are sorry to let you know that $0.35 have been removed from your earnings as a result of a refund. File IDs: 1686929 - reason: fraud. Thank you for your patience and understanding."

It's a bit worrying to see images being refunded for fraud. Is credit being given based on fraudulent payment methods?

For such a small amount I am surprised that they have deducted this from my account, perhaps this fraud is widespread and effecting more than just a few people.

« Reply #30 on: October 20, 2008, 09:24 »
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Lol - brown is not a good choice of text color!! ;-)

Quote:

""Due to reasons which are beyond our control, we are sorry to let you know that $0.35 have been removed from your earnings as a result of a refund. File IDs: 1686929 - reason: fraud. Thank you for your patience and understanding."

hali

« Reply #31 on: October 20, 2008, 09:25 »
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i thought we are dealing with pros, not some two bit so-called layout artist.

yes, i agree with NYTumbleweeds .
it sounds fishy. you make a mistake on one or two, not a batch.
and like you said, not after months.
would say amazon allow you a refund on cds or dvds you bought 3 months later?

also, what's to stop them from using your images? they got their money back.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2008, 09:31 by hali »

« Reply #32 on: October 20, 2008, 15:57 »
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This was ours, this morning:

Due to reasons which are beyond our control, we are sorry to let you know that $2 have been removed from your earnings as a result of a refund. File IDs: 5374007 - reason: fraud. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

/sigh

« Reply #33 on: October 20, 2008, 16:51 »
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I also recieved that e-mail today and I lost a bit more money.

"Due to reasons which are beyond our control, we are sorry to let you know that $12.09 have been removed from your earnings as a result of a refund. File IDs: 2019200, 947560, 810615, 2496542, 1692446, 1417303 - reason: fraud. Thank you for your patience and understanding."

My images were downloaded and could be used by this fraudster. Dreamstime accepted this fraudulent transaction, but don't want to accept any responsibility for it. Why must I suffer the loss and they nothing?

« Reply #34 on: October 20, 2008, 17:14 »
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I got one of these today for one image and have replied asking for clarification. Will post here if I get a worthwhile answer.

RacePhoto

« Reply #35 on: October 20, 2008, 22:00 »
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I got one of these today for one image and have replied asking for clarification. Will post here if I get a worthwhile answer.

At least they notified you. On another site, my account had a reversal and when I asked why, they said, they didn't track that. No big deal for me, only 50c, but no notice, no reason, no clue? At least DT has been giving notice and a reason.

I don't know, but when I buy something online, the CC is verified before the purchase is completed. When I pay for food or go shopping, the payment is electronically verified, before I get the goods. Maybe the photo sites are getting hit with stolen CCs and only find out after the photos are downloaded, which can be days or weeks later. In other words, the card is checked and passes through at first, and the charges are later reversed by the CC company.

What else can they do? Someone sings up and wants photos, then they say, you have to wait two weeks, for the payment to clear and account verification, before you can download? How many buyers would just go somewhere else if that happened.

This assumes that the payments are being checked live on the site as they should be.

« Reply #36 on: October 21, 2008, 02:06 »
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I got one of these today for one image and have replied asking for clarification. Will post here if I get a worthwhile answer.

At least they notified you. On another site, my account had a reversal and when I asked why, they said, they didn't track that. No big deal for me, only 50c, but no notice, no reason, no clue? At least DT has been giving notice and a reason.

I don't know, but when I buy something online, the CC is verified before the purchase is completed. When I pay for food or go shopping, the payment is electronically verified, before I get the goods. Maybe the photo sites are getting hit with stolen CCs and only find out after the photos are downloaded, which can be days or weeks later. In other words, the card is checked and passes through at first, and the charges are later reversed by the CC company.

What else can they do? Someone sings up and wants photos, then they say, you have to wait two weeks, for the payment to clear and account verification, before you can download? How many buyers would just go somewhere else if that happened.

This assumes that the payments are being checked live on the site as they should be.


What else can they do??? Are you serious? It is THEIR responsibility and their risk. They accepted the fraud-cc. Not us! They must not transfer their loss to us! I hate being so helpless. We just must let them do whatever they want with our money. This is just risk-free for them, isntt it? If the sale is OK, they grab their huge percentage of the sale and are so nice to let us have the teeeeeny rest. And if the sale turns out to be fraud - they just take our money away without our being able to prevent it! And even after a lot of months! This really stiknks. OK - I would be willing to give them a week to check the payments (like BS). But past the week - it must be their loss. I strongly disagree to having my money stolen from my account after several weeks.

« Reply #37 on: October 21, 2008, 14:22 »
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I don't know, but when I buy something online, the CC is verified before the purchase is completed. When I pay for food or go shopping, the payment is electronically verified, before I get the goods. Maybe the photo sites are getting hit with stolen CCs and only find out after the photos are downloaded, which can be days or weeks later. In other words, the card is checked and passes through at first, and the charges are later reversed by the CC company.

How does this actually works in the CC side?  If I have my card stolen or I lose it, it's my responsability to warn the CC company, right?  After that, it's their responsability.  On some occasions they called me to ask if a certain internet purchase (out of my pattern) was really done by me.  You can even receive CC usage notices in your phone cell.

I suppose Amazon doesn't lose money if someone buys with a CC that gets accepted and later its considered a fraud. I wonder if sites that are having such problems really follow all procedures requested by the CC companies.

I once had my CC cloned and suddenly in just one day the person spent over US$2,500 in a mall.  All those purchases were not my pattern (though some could have been mine), and the CC company didn't question me: I had to go to their office and indicate which were mine, which were not.  There was still some delay putting numbers right, but the CC company ultimately swallowed the loss - or maybe the store did, if they did not follow some procedure (they should check the signature, but many don't).

Sites that get the largest cut, such as IS, probably swallow these losses.  FT should as well. And any of them should be responsible in case they don't wait for a CC confirmation before allowing downloads.

Regards,
Adelaide

hali

« Reply #38 on: October 21, 2008, 15:08 »
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i think the bottom line is that when you buy from Amazon, the cds and dvds,etc are from distributors. big companies.
when you buy from a supermarket, you buy groceries from General Foods,etc.
again big companies with lawyers to sue you for your negligence.
in our case, each of us are not big companies, and we don't retain a lawyer to sue the stock site for negligence of giving away our images without verifying the CC.
that is the difference.

« Reply #39 on: October 21, 2008, 15:11 »
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I have only had one refund (that I know of) and it was from IS. I think the file was too big for the buyer to download, so the returned and bought a smaller size.

« Reply #40 on: October 31, 2008, 08:16 »
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Just got one too. Looks like for downloads that took place back in August:

"Due to reasons which are beyond our control, we are sorry to let you know that $2.88 have been removed from your earnings as a result of a refund. File IDs: 5450016, 5450032 - reason: fraud. Thank you for your patience and understanding"

« Reply #41 on: October 31, 2008, 08:45 »
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What is reason "fraud"? Meaning somebody has our images and paid for them by a stolen card e.g.? Then it should be the agency loss, not ours. I cannot imagine a shop not paying for the goods to their suppliers because the goods got stolen e.g. or paid for by a stolen card. This "customer refund" of theirs is egregious!
« Last Edit: November 04, 2008, 02:33 by peep »

Microbius

« Reply #42 on: October 31, 2008, 08:55 »
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What is reason "fraud"? Meaning somebody has our images and paid for them by a stolen card e.g.? Then it should be the agency loss, not ours. I cannot imagine a shop not paying for the goods to their suppliers because the goods got stolen e.g. or paid for by a stole card. This "customer refund" of theirs is egregious!

I get several of these a month from DT with the "fraud" reason. I couldn't agree more, not only has their security allowed the theft of an image (and therefore perhaps resale by one of these dubious fraudsters), we get hit up for the money! DT need to bear the financial burden otherwise there is no motivation for the agency to tighten security.

« Reply #43 on: November 03, 2008, 22:16 »
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The speculation that they may still use the file is invalidated by our experience so far. Yes, one in a million might do it, but there are plenty of penalties to enforce if that happens. No one wants to pay an expensive penalty just because they didn't want to pay $5-10. If value is a problem for them, they go via subscriptions for the same file or the free images section.

A zoom feature was delayed until we are sure that the technical solution limits almost all kinds of fraud. It's tricky to remove watermarks, but not impossible. There are people who would be doing it. Even if the solution is extremely easy for the agency, contributors need to be protected. Doing this might limit the refunds, but would increase the fraud a lot. It would be exactly the opposite of the things mentioned above.

Ummm, really nice. Two completely different assumptions in just 2 paragraphs... yeah, the contributors need to be protected.

Microbius

« Reply #44 on: November 04, 2008, 03:38 »
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That statement from Achilles is so naive it's untrue. Anyone who goes to the trouble of using a stolen card to buy images isn't doing it to use them in their own ad campaign.
They steal images on mass so they can give them away for free in order to get traffic for their sites so they can profit from Google ads, donations etc. Either that or they simply sell them as their own work.

« Reply #45 on: November 04, 2008, 05:55 »
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Exactly. Why would anybody steal images (or "buying" them with a stolen card) if they did not want to use them?

« Reply #46 on: November 04, 2008, 09:32 »
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They may not use them commercially.  They may distribute it to the world through Rapidshare of something like that.  But I do think someone using a stolen card to buy photos (which are mostly not porn) must be after some commercial benefit, maybe simply selling photo CDs.

But nevertheless, I think sales should be more protected.  Even if I get my share of a sale so it doesn't hurt my pocket.  I still think downloads should only be allowed after CC transaction is fully approved.

Regards,
Adelaide

KB

« Reply #47 on: November 05, 2008, 17:12 »
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I, too, received an email on Oct 20 advising of a refund for reason of "fraud". It's my most downloaded image, so I have to agree the reason for downloading is most likely to steal the image for sale elsewhere.

It would be nice if DT could reassure us that they are doing more to pursue and persecute such buyers in addition to taking back their commission.

KB

« Reply #48 on: November 13, 2008, 10:43 »
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Another one this morning.

It doesn't seem like this problem is going away anytime soon.  :-[

« Reply #49 on: November 13, 2008, 11:11 »
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Another one this morning.

It doesn't seem like this problem is going away anytime soon.  :-[

Me to, it was $2.00 today for credit card fraud.


 

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