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eBay glitch sends packages to wrong addresses

Promises fix soon

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eBay has acknowledged a bug on its site that's causing some sellers to send items to the wrong address. The flaw, which in certain cases causes eBay to transmit incorrect mailing instructions to sellers, is expected to be fixed soon, an eBay official said today.

"This recent issue is limited to a very small number of eBay purchases and is presenting sellers with the wrong shipping information," the official wrote on the PayPalblog. "We understand and recognize that for these buyers and sellers, this is a very serious issue and are working to correct the problem."

One of those users is Joe Kane,from England, who said every time he tries to make a purchase using eBay's vaunted Buy-it-Now feature, the system automatically transmits an address he used just the once more than three years ago.

"For some reason there's no way of me getting rid of it," said Kane, who lives in Essex. He said the bug has caused him considerable headaches, not only because it has prevented him from receiving goods he's paid for, but also because eBay and PayPal support people seemed to be unaware of the problem.

"The PayPal people say 'this isn't our problem.' They directed me to an online chat forum" for eBay support, he said. "eBay would respond by saying it's PayPal."

Other users have also complained in forums here, here and here.

"What an almighty mess, but this might also serve as a warning for us all to check and re check and even confirm personally with buyers that addresses are correct," wrote one eBay user, who said the glitch weighed particularly heavily on a buyer the user had recently transacted with. "She's checked all her other purchases and has realised about 200 pounds worth of purchases have gone to the wrong address since 2nd September." ®

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