AuctionBytes Blog
Covering auctions, collectibles and marketplace selling.

AuctionBytes Blog The AuctionBytes Blog has been giving a voice to online merchants since its launch in 2005. Named one of the world's top 30 blogs in 2008 by "Blogging Heroes." Weigh in with your thoughts on the joys and pitfalls of selling online.
Tue June 12 2018 21:38:56

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

I received a message from an eBay user who was concerned about buyer privacy. "Have you noticed that the new Seller Hub reveals all buyers phone numbers to sellers," he asked.

"I think this is a huge breach of privacy and most buyers have no idea eBay is revealing their phone numbers to sellers on every purchase now without them even having to request it," he continued. "In a world where phone numbers are bought and sold for telemarketing and spam call use, this is alarming."

The user ended his message with the following:

"In a world where Facebook is under fire for privacy breaches, it needs to be known that buyers personal and often times mobile phone numbers are being distributed to thousands of random sellers without their knowledge and even if it is written somewhere in the fine print, 99% of people won't have any idea. I have purchased thousands of items having no idea this was a thing."

What do you think of eBay's policies, and this buyer's concerns about its practices?




Comments (17) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: TomH This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 12 23:15:57 2018

Overwrought.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Wed Jun 13 00:17:58 2018

I have my eCrater preferences set so that buyers have to include phone numbers. I did this because, as surprising as it may seem, many buyers make typographical errors in their e-mail addresses and apparently don't check to make sure all their information is correct before they place their order. I have had many occasions where I've had no option but to place a call to a buyer so I can let them know their order is on the way. I had one instance where I needed to contact the buyer before I could ship, and the buyer had two e-mail addresses. She used the first part (before the @ sign) of one address with the second part (after the @ sign) of the second address. If I didn't have a phone number I would never have been able to reach her.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 13 01:48:31 2018

Ebay has been supplying the buyers phone numbers with my sales for as long as I can remember, and I don;t use Sellers Hub.  The only time I have ever used it was to contact the buyer when there was a big issue that needed to be resolved immediately so their item could be shipped.  I have yet to have any buyer complain when I contacted them and explained why I had done so, in fact most have thanked me for taking the time to inform them of an issue so that they could get their item promptly..

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Jun 13 02:22:39 2018

Sellers have always had access to buyer's phone numbers on Ebay.  Just as a buyer does for the sellers they trade with.  I'm not sure I see the concern.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: sasikat9 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 13 05:12:52 2018

Ebay can give our phone number to anyone they want to. The number is connected to our security system and if some idiot wants to call it. LOTS OF LUCK GETTING AN ANSWER as it doesn't even ring to us and all the idiot will get is a busy signal. Best phone number we have ever had.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Jun 13 06:07:51 2018

Buyer privacy?

So are buyers now supposed to conduct a transaction without giving eBay and the sellers basic information?  eBay is already a scammers paradise.  Let's not go there.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 13 09:21:15 2018

Lets put this in the proper context ....

AMAZON does it too - so it MUST be ok, right?

Besides - some times its needed - the back n forth with emails sometimes is either too much or not enough.

Id chillax about it ...

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 13 09:35:56 2018

Want 'privacy'?

Stay off-line.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: leathermermaid8 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 13 09:50:18 2018

Bah.  This info was always available.  It only makes sense to have phone numbers on file.  If you buy a large item and delivery info needs to be firmed up, how else to do it?  

Most people have caller id and voicemail and dodgy callers rarely leave messages.  Blocked calls never get answered at my house.

There are bigger privacy issues out there, work on those.

For instance, I'm not sure I'd like eBay sharing whether or not I have a Black Diamond-super-ultra-rolling-in bitcoin-Euro-Bucks, etc.-credit card with potential advertisers.  It just irks me.

But that's just me and my tinfoil hat.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: shut1968 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 13 21:18:03 2018

Amazon started doing it because some shipping services now require the end users (customers) phone number, and while it was always available on Ebay it wasn't always included in the sales details.. they started showing it right around the same time as AZ.
Shortly after adding it to the buyers name and address Amazon placed a "warning" at the top of the page stating that it's to be used for shipping purposes only and not for seller/buyer contact. They consider it a policy violation to use the number to contact the buyer so be weary of actually using it for something that would be a benefit to sellers.. like contacting the buyer if there is a problem.  

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: roberttx This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 14 07:49:42 2018

As shut1968 says, FedEx and UPS require the consignee's phone number.

Which is great when they put in (111) 111 1111. Because ebay doesn't verify that phone numbers - or addresses - are valid when users sign up. Bunch of clowns.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

This user has validated their user name. by: mcfiver

Fri Jun 15 04:05:08 2018

Your privacy wailing is ill-informed. Having been a seller since 1999, it's common knowlege that eBay buyers phone numbers, along with their address, have always appeared with their purchase information. As a seller I know that both UPS & FED-EX require a phone number. It's also appropriate, should something in the shipping process go awry, that I can immediately contact the buyer. In return, as a seller, I also include my direct email address and phone number on all my invoices, should they require it.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: KV This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jun 15 07:29:32 2018

I'm constantly amazed at what people share about themselves. Particularly where they live. They think nothing of giving out the location where they are -- and their spouse and chilfdren are -- and can be robbed, raped, and killed. Then they look for someone else to blame instead of their own stupidity.

Nobody knows where I live. It's not even on my driver's license. Anyone who comes looking for me will find a shiny silver box at a mail store. And BTW, I have NEVER had a package stolen off my front porch.

Compared to being murdered, getting annoyong phone calls is nothing. But again, eBay can't give out info they don't have. So it's stupid to give your real phone number to eBay or any other company. eBay could put the address and phone number they have on file for me on a billboard for all I care. I have Google Voice, which allows me to block any caller with a single click.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: redheadedlady This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jun 15 08:40:42 2018

This privacy issue is just getting way, way out of hand.  I could care less if someone has my phone #.  I don't talk to too many people and it's nice to hear another voice on the other end.
I missed an order on website and the lady opened a case against me on paypal.
Well, I had her phone # and called her.  She was so pleasant and very happy that I took the time to call her.
I now have a customer for life just for taking the time to call and explain something to her.
We talked for over 30 minutes.  It does pay off by just taking a little time to personally call a potential customer.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: mazelgirl This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jun 15 09:36:29 2018

Yes, on rare occasions there is a question about an order so I have called.

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: Docinmd This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jun 15 10:07:45 2018

I was recently hospitalized for 6 days, unable to send out packages. I sent messages to each buyer offering either to refund or ask them to wait until I was out, just let me know. 3 buyers didn't respond, so I called them. ALL 3 were very happy that I had taken the time/effort to call them, and told me they were willing to wait util I was able to process my sales.
Old business school saying: Good communication makes for good customers, that makes for good sales.
And surprise: One of my buyers even sent me an email get well card!

Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?   Should eBay Provide Sellers with Buyer Phone Numbers?

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jun 16 22:22:27 2018

"I now have a customer for life..."

Well now, there's your problem.  You have a customer, eBay doesn't.  You don't even need eBay anymore for that one.  And the next, and the next....

Ergo, the company who would sit in hypocritical judgement of your communication skills, deems it necessary to curtail them.  Becase you HAVE them.

And they don't.  



Login is required to post comments.
To sign in to leave a comment using your AB Verify User Name, fill in the form below. If you have not yet signed up for AB Verify, or if you'd like more information, go to the Registration Page
.

Login for AB Verify
Be sure and use your email address and password to log in.

 
Email:
Password:
 
 Forgot Your Password?
 Even though you are signed in with the AuctionBytes Blog, you will have to sign in to the EcommerceBytes blog. But you can sign in with your existing AB Verify info.