Fiverr Community Forum

Fiverr seller protection program doesn't work, 3644$ scammed by fraudulent buyer's chargeback

Hello everyone!

First of all I want to thank fiverr for all the opportunities. Fiverr gave me a lot because during pandemic I’ve lost my day job and this platform really saved my life. Now I’m a popular level 2 seller with 30+ monthly orders, thanks for that.

But unfortunately, the reason why I’m writing this post is to report about the serious downsides of the platform for the sellers that resulted in recent 3644$ fraud from a buyer and deduction of these funds from my account which makes my further work on fiverr impossible, because fiverrs seller protection program does not seem to work and fiverr tech support / customer service team are near to be useless. Unfortunately… And here is why (I’ve tried to compose this letter without emotions but that was hard, hope you can understand):

I had an order from a strange buyer who wanted to pay the gig by promo code, so I’ve asked Fiverr’s tech support to investigate the buyer**,** If its legit to continue to work with him. TS hasn’t seen anything suspicious so I’ve decided to proceed with the delivery. But just in case while delivering the order I’ve put this text just to make sure that this buyer won’t cancel the order (screenshot 1 attached):

I’ve delivered unique hand-drawn piece of art

Buyer accepted it, rated me 5/5, I’ve received the payment, everything was good, so he proceeded with the orders and made 4 more with big amounts and all of them have been accepted with 5/5 rating. But after 14 days (or more) after the delivery 4 out 5 orders got cancelled.

And interesting fact that three of these orders have been canceled simultaneously on the same date 22nd of January, but fiverr told me that it “got my back” with fiverrs sellers protection program and these funds have been returned to my account. (screenshot 2)

Later, on the 24th of January I’ve received a new letter from fiverr that these orders have been reviewed and I do not meet “the requirements” so these funds have been deducted from my account (screenshot 3)

bummer! I’ve checked again this link: https://www.fiverr.com/support/articles/360010978618 and as I can see the funds can be deducted from my account only if I’m responsible for only service-related issues. (screenshot 4)

The correspondence with this fraud buyer is 100% legit – I’ve made him custom offers with all the terms and conditions of delivery and provided my service in full. So there is no reason to accuse me in not delivering the order fully. Period.

I’ve made a request to tech support about this horrible issue and Federico from fiverr told me that everything is fine and I need to wait for 7 days to receive back the funds to my account and I don’t need to worry because sellers protection program is working. I’ve asked again because I haven’t received any official confirmation letters from fiverr on this issue. Federico confirmed several times that these funds will come back. (screenshots 5, 6 and 7 attached)

I’ve waited patiently for 7-8 days, even tried to clear some of the payments with “early payout” button but these funds were deducted too because of overall negative account balance, which made me worried.

Then the second horrible thing happened: fourth order from the same buyer got cancelled, I had the same letter from fiverr that the company “has my back” with seller protection program, I’ve immediately sent the letter to Federico and he confirmed that “the system” returned my funds immediately (screenshot 8) and I don’t need to worry.

Also he confirmed that all cases are handled in the different way and I just need to wait (screenshot 9)

But then I’ve received a letter from fiverr that this order has been reviewed and the funds have been deducted because of the same reason (“do not meet all the requirements of safety program”). So I’ve asked Federico how come? And he has changed his attitude immediately (screenshot 10) and said that “work was not done 100%” which is totally untrue, I’ve mentioned that above in this post.

I’ve asked to explain further and dig deeper into the issue by the relevant team, but the Federis answer was that inspection goes automatically and not handled by team (screenshot 11)

But seems like this “team” took “proper actions” according to the system and guidelines and deducted the funds from my account. (screenshot 12)

So now I really don’t know what to do and how to react…

  • I’ve got tricked on 2932$ by a fraud buyer, which is 100% clear,

  • I have a terrible negative account balance that can be in even bigger minus because of the 5th order which is now ok but soon to be cancelled.

  • Fiverr hasn’t gotten my back at all and your fiverr sellers protection program doesn’t work at all

  • Seems like fiverr have some issues with tech support because Federico is just a “forward manager” who can’t help the process at all and “the relevant team” take any kind of further actions but do not investigate the case deeper.

  • Also this strange buyer “can no longer be contacted”

  • Tech support now is ignoring me, I open new requests and they got marked as “solved” without any answer

Seems like any seller can be scammed like this… and fiverr is not a safe place for the sellers at all…

Any suggestions on what to do next? once I’ve messaged their COO Hila Klein on some other request on linkedIn, she has never answered but my gig got returned from deletion! But now I do not have the premium account there and cannot message her…

Maybe any of you know the contacts of fiverr managers to send them this case directly? any help would be appreciated!

Regards and thanks for reading till the end

12 Likes

Sorry this happened to you!

When there’s a chargeback, Fiverr bans the buyer (because chargebacks are not allowed).

Multiple tickets opened about the same issue get closed as spam.

If someone knows those contacts, I’m not sure it would be allowed to share them on the forum.

I think that some sellers got help after contacting Fiverr on social media (of course, there’s no guarantee it would work in your case, especially with all the desperate ones spamming Fiverr’s social media with their gig links).

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thanks a lot for your help!

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I am so incredibly sorry this happened to you. I don’t know why, but I feel like this is an inside job made by someone within Fiverr staff. If you explained everything to them clearly, and showed screenshots and proof that you completed your orders and met all your requirements, Fiverr has NO reason to treat you like this.
They are more incentivized to KEEP money on their platform, not off it. (Since they take 20% of the cut)

You’re only other best bet is to make an uproar about this on social media. Make a post about this and ask anyone and EVERYONE to like, retweet, post and share. Get the story everywhere (pay for it to promote it if you have to). Only then will Fiverr panic and worry about their public image enough to actually DO something about this. And maybe in the process get your money back and/or reimburse you.

So sorry again this happened to you. Wishing you all the best!

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thank you very much for your kind words and advice! I’ve already send the message to Hila Klein fiverr COO) on facebook and left a comment to her recent post. Maybe people will “like” this comment to draw attention to this case

thank you!

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Sorry to hear this, it happened to me last year for a significant amount as well.

As much as it can be a kick in the teeth, its sometimes better to just take the hit and move on.

Unfortunately I am not sure there is many ways to protect anyone from this when you accept payments that are not direct transfers. Many websites have to deal with this issue and on the surface it seems like the banking/financial sector need to do more to protect against fraud claims.

Cheers,
A

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thanks for the comment and your kind words, but I’m not that type of person who will just take that and move on… I won’t respect myself if not to try to get these funds back. And this amount is very significant for me

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Trust me, i do get it but there is very little you can do in reality other that waste your own time/money. The chargeback is not against you in theory (as far as i am aware) it is against Fiverr. You cannot even raise a case with a bank about this because the chargeback has not been filed against you. You have to also understand Fiverr’s point of view, if the “buyer” has said their credit card was stolen and someone made fraud payment on this, there is very little they can do… they can provide evidence to the bank but again this takes up more time/resources and i assume its better to cut their losses on some cases.

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fiverr cuts 20% of each deal (even tips) so they need to deal with this kind of stuff. They even have this so called “seller protection program”. So they need to keep as as sellers from these frauds, I’m even ready to pay the seller insurance to cover these kinds of situations, but they don’t have any.

Here is a very good thread about it An old order has been canceled, and now my balance is negative - #5 by catalin00

also the thread starter got refunded, so there is hope

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Same here , I just take the hit and move on

There’s taking a hit - and there’s taking a hit.

We’re not talking about $36 or $360 (which would be bad enough), we’re talking more than $3,600.

That’s a crazy amount of money to lose, and I say that as someone who lives in the south of England - an expensive part of the world.

Assuming the op’s post is true - and I have no reason to believe it isn’t - how can a seller have any faith that this won’t happen again?

I just don’t think it is reasonable to simply say ‘take the hit and move on’. What has happened is fraud. Justice needs to prevail here.

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What worries me here is that customers seem able to convince Fiverr that their job was faulty even after they already said it was great and broke TOS with a chargeback. There is no question posed to the seller, just cancel and take the money back. I don’t think anyone even looks at the conversation and the work delivered to see if it looks remotely reasonable.

Maybe the customer said it was perfect, took the work to a printer 23 years later and found the bleeds were wrong but why not ask the seller to rectumfy (it seems ill-chosen words are fine seeing Fibroids do it two) before allowing refunds?

It seems that all the (non)customer has to say is they are not happy and the seller must be 100% responsible. I get if the seller is silly enough to have a 199% Satisfraction Golftee. This happens so much.

Fiber never seem to say “It is regrettable that we had to do this based on the wording of your Gif” which left our hanks tied. So we can only assume that the smeller protection plant is a plan :wink:

:roll_eyes:

1 Like

Not much we can help you with but just to double check?

Did you attach the screenshots to CS tickets?
It usually helps to attach screenshots of requirements, work delivered and customers review. (Even though it sounds silly).

And I would’ve also try to ask to escalate the situation

Unfortunately, you have to I am afraid…although it seems like “$3600” in theory it is much smaller amount from Fiverr’s perspective (remember they are the ones who have been “chargebacked” not the seller) and like any business they need to justify to value in battling this.

As far as i am away OP mentioned the orders where split between several orders, so we are talking about a couple of hundred dollars worth (for each order) from a multimillion dollar corporation, they will not waste time battling something that could cost them more money/time/resources.

I am not 100% sure how the procedure goes with chargeback cases but the only way to challenge this (as far as i know) is if the chargeback was in itself a fraudulent dispute.

We are not privy to what the customer or what the bank are saying and if Fiverr’s 1st or 2nd response is disputed (not sure how long these can go on for) then i highly doubt they are going to keep battling to win a total value of $720 (total value of the order for Fiverr).

Remember there is possibly 100,000 of these per month that they need to deal with, it sucks but just trying to hopefully shed another perspective on this.

As someone who lives in England, the amount of money represents more than an entire month’s income to me. I’m sure there will be some readers in other parts of the world saying it represents closer to three month’s income - and others, even six month’s income.

Assuming the op’s story is genuine, how on earth can he carry on working on a platform that allows this to happen? I would forever be thinking what if it happens again? Where is the protection for the seller? It’s a case of once bitten twice shy.

I’m forever banging on in the forum about how sellers have to protect their account. Fiverr is my preferred freelancing platform, but one of the ways I protect my account is by not accepting orders that take any longer than half a day maximum. That way if the buyer turns out to be fraudulent then I can live with the results.

Fiverr is a good fit with smaller jobs, but for me it’s too risky for larger jobs. The op’s experience is yet another reminder why I always say no to longer duration jobs.

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Trust me, i know… i live in the UK as well and i have experienced a typical “months salary” chargeback. I think you are missing my point, it is not about Fiverr letting this happen, the chargeback eco system is the real issue.

It can happen to any company and depending on what the customer has said is the reason, it is designed to be a genuine protective measure against fraudulently purchases.

If Fiverr paid back every single chargeback there would be no business… This is an issue on both sides of the coin, buyers and sellers can be fraudulent.

My problem with that is that every chargeback goes into dispute and if seller “aka” Fiverr didn’t provide proof within 7 days then money is given back to buyer.

And my problem is that Fiverr is “handling those” instead of sellers themselves and I’m not sure how exactly they are handling them if they don’t even ask for “proof” from sellers to confirm the dispute case that everything was delivered as promised.

I actually highly doubt that they do anything for those disputes at all, and that’s what bugs me.

I always got my money from Fiverr for chargebacks but those were small amounts of around 50$, however we saw on the forum that Fiverr is not so generous compensating for such a big orders.

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It’s time to integrate a digital currency that can’t be charged back, and problem solved. No chargebacks, no clearing times and all good :slight_smile:

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hmmm, that is a really great idea!!!

haha, thats a very interesting writing style you have! thanks for making my face smile! :))) and yes, I agree with you! what shall we do then?!