Well, it finally happened to me. After 2+ years of heavy buying and selling online, I finally got scammed. I Posted on POTN (photography-on-the.net -- a Canon user website) for a 17-40mm Canon lens. Someone contacted me (username: Municty), with history on POTN (though a short history) and who was paypal verified (though recently verified). I asked for pictures, they sent that to me vie regular e-mail, so I have an e-mail address that looked reasonable (i.e. not [email protected] or some such, but a person's name: [email protected]). Also, it wasn't a "too good to be true" price. It was a reasonable price ($650, and supposedly included a 77mm Hoya HMC filter). So, a posting history on POTN, paypal verified, a reasonable e-mail and product pictures. Sent my money, and never heard from them again. After a couple of days, I put the payment into dispute after I noticed the users inbox was full on POTN (a PM returned with "inbox full) and another clue (see #3, below). I alerted POTN, who must have reviewed the users activity, and then banned them. So, I might not have been the only one. Four take-aways: 1) The user had posting history, but rereading the history, it's nothing but one-liners ("I like it" and "nice work"). Not enough substance. From now on, no buying and selling from newbies for anything of value (sorry newbies), and more scrutiny on their actual posting history. 2) I see now paypal verification date and their joining POTN was the same time frame, so clearly they came to scam. I will again limit substantive transactions to people with established histories in Paypal and the forum site. 3) I checked this web page: https://www.paypal.com/us/verified/pal=email, where "email" is replaced by the actual user's e-mail, and it's supposed to tell you if the user is PP verified. This paypal check said they were. But AFTER payment, paypal reported in my receipt letter that the address is "non-US Verified" which is what immediately alerted me to a possible scam. I am upset that paypal allows this. Confirms "verified" in the background check page, but after the transaction you get a report that says "non-US verified." I would have liked to have known that up front. 4) The case was found in my favor, and paypal covered my loss. Yeah PayPal! The lesson though? I'll never use paypal gift (as many buyers suggest, in order to get a price reduction) and I'll not sell to non-verified buyers (maybe things like $20 adapters, but nothing of substance). It was doing PayPal the right way that protected me. If I had used gift, or transacted with a non-verified user, I would have eaten the loss. In the end, I think I trusted the "verified" status too much, and was too eager for the lens. I should look at all the other factors. I'll certainly be more careful in the future. I am pleased with the fast acting mods on POTN and also the dispute resolution at Paypal. Once burned, twice shy, and I resolve this won't happen to me again, but I thought I should pass on my lesson to my friends at mu-43.