EBay users are being deceived into giving private e-mail accounts and other secure information by responding to fraudulent e-mails supposedly from the auction site.
Authorities tracked more than 30 cases to a German-based computer and bank account used in the swindle, The Sunday Times of London reported.
The fraud involves the establishment of phony e-mail accounts registered to actual eBay users to solicit sales of non-existent goods. The British case involves sending e-mails to eBay users notifying them they won an auction and asking for verification by submitting their account information off-site.
Users then check the viability of the actual seller and the scam is masked behind the registered users trading reputation.
EBay released a statement saying it had removed all suspicious transactions and restored user accounts to their status prior to the fraudulent activity.
The statement noted the frauds were possible only because users provided personal information and entered into negotiations regarding bids off-site.