Web

‘Professional authenticators’ will rid its site of fake goods, eBay says

ebay paypal adyen hq
Ken Wolter / Shutterstock
Following Amazon’s recent decision to ramp up efforts to rid its online store of counterfeit goods, eBay has this week announced similar plans.

The initiative involves a so-called “authentication program” aimed at boosting consumer confidence when it comes to shopping on the site and hitting the buy button.

Initially focusing on high-end products such as branded handbags and other fashion-related items, the system will be powered by a network of professional authenticators charged with checking whether an item is the real deal or a cheap knock-off.

Sellers handling pricey products can sign up to the authentication service, though they’ll have to pay a fee, the amount of which is currently undecided. Once they enroll, a note will be attached to each of the seller’s products on eBay informing the shopper that if they purchase an item, it’ll be examined by an official authenticator prior to shipping. Of course, if the item is found to be fake, the transaction will be canceled and the shopper reimbursed.

If the seller doesn’t want to enroll in the program, the buyer can request an inspection, though the fee will be charged to them instead.

Finally, if a shopper receives a product following inspection and it’s found to be fake, eBay promises to refund the buyer twice the amount of the original purchase price.

Discussing the new system, Laura Chambers, VP of eBay Consumer Selling, said, “For buyers, the service adds another layer of trust to allow them to shop confidently. And for sellers, the service will be most beneficial for those who are looking to part ways with their high-value items, but don’t necessarily have a long-established selling history on eBay.”

Chambers added, “For our more established sellers, the service may not be as meaningful given they’ve likely established a trusted reputation, but it will certainly be available to all sellers.”

The new authentication system will be tested out over the coming months, with eBay aiming to make it broadly available toward the end of 2017. If it helps to boost sales of high-end items, everyone’s a winner, including eBay, which takes a cut of every sale.

Amazon revealed in November that it, too, is stepping up efforts to rid its own site of fake goods, calling on brand owners to register their products with the Seattle-based company. Once an item is in its registry, any seller who lists the product for sale has to prove to Amazon that they have a legal right to sell it online.

The effectiveness of these initiatives remains to be seen, but the two ecommerce giants clearly feel compelled to find new ways to banish counterfeit goods from their online stores in a bid to maintain and boost confidence among its users while reassuring brand owners and sellers of genuine goods that they’re looking out for them, too.

Smart Home

Booth babes, banned sex toys, and other mishaps at CES 2019

From female sex toys bans, to fake Tesla/robot collision stories, there was some weird stuff going on at CES 2019 this year. Here are some of the biggest mishaps and flubs at the world's biggest tech show.
Business

Apple banned from distributing some iPhone models in Germany

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Deals

Need a new tablet? The best iPad deals for January 2019

In the wide world of tablets, Apple is still the king. If you're on team Apple and just can't live without iOS, we've curated an up-to-date list of all of the best iPad deals currently available for December 2018.
Home Theater

The seven best TVs you can buy right now, from budget to big screen

Looking for a new television? In an oversaturated market, buying power is at an all-time high, but you'll need to cut through the rough to find a diamond. We're here to help with our picks for the best TVs of 2019.
Deals

Looking to upgrade? These are the best iPhone deals for January 2019

Apple devices can get expensive, but if you just can't live without iOS, don't despair: We've curated an up-to-date list of all of the absolute best iPhone deals available for January 2019.
Web

Shutdown makes dozens of .gov websites insecure due to expired TLS certificates

The US government shutdown is causing trouble in internet security. As the shutdown enters day 22, dozens of government websites have been rendered insecure or inaccessible due to expired transport layer security (TLS) certificates.
Social Media

A quick swipe will soon let you keep bingeing YouTube on mobile devices

The YouTube mobile app has a new, faster way to browse: Swiping. Once the update rolls out, users can swipe to go to the next (or previous) video in the recommended list, even while viewing in full screen.
Computing

Our favorite Chrome themes add some much-needed pizzazz to your boring browser

Sometimes you just want Chrome to show a little personality and ditch the grayscale for something a little more lively. Lucky for you, we've sorted through the Chrome Web Store to find best Chrome themes available.
Business

Cathay Pacific messes up first-class ticket prices — again

A couple of weeks ago, an error on Cathay Pacific's website resulted in first-class seats selling for a tenth of the price. On Sunday, January 13, the airline made the error again. The good news is that it'll honor the bookings.
Computing

Reluctant to give your email address away? Here's how to make a disposable one

Want to sign up for a service without the risk of flooding your inbox with copious amounts of spam and unwanted email? You might want to consider using disposable email addresses via one of these handy services.
Social Media

YouTube to crack down on dangerous stunts like the ‘Bird Box’ challenge

YouTube already bans content showing dangerous activities, but new rules published by the site go into greater detail regarding potentially harmful challenges and pranks, including certain blindfold- or laundry detergent-based stunts.
Computing

Pinning websites to your taskbar is as easy as following these quick steps

Would you like to know how to pin a website to the taskbar in Windows 10 in order to use browser links like apps? Whichever browser you're using, it's easier than you might think. Here's how to get it done.
Computing

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.
Computing

Delete tracking cookies from your system by following these quick steps

Cookies are useful when it comes to saving your login credentials and other data, but they can also be used by advertisers to track your browsing habits across multiple sites. Here's how to clear cookies in the major browsers.