1 min article

Encouraging illegal activity policy

For a safer buying and selling experience on eBay, we don't allow selling or linking to items that encourage, promote, facilitate, or instruct others to engage in illegal activity.

Policy overview

We also don't allow buyers to ask sellers to break any laws. For example, buyers can't ask sellers to falsify customs declarations or have an item marked as "gift" in order to avoid customs fees.

What are the guidelines?

Not allowed

Here are some examples of information, items, and activities that aren't allowed on eBay:

  • Examples of information
    • Codes, services, and items that allow cell phone or smartphone unlocking
    • Kill switch-activated electronic devices, including smartphones and tablets
    • Instructions on how to use or inject steroids (eBook, website, and so forth)
    • Lockpicking DVDs or DVDs that provide information on how to pick locks
    • A link to a website that provides information on how to hijack an airplane
    • An eBook describing how to create methamphetamine
    • Other sources of information similar to those listed here
  • Examples of items
    • USPS shipping labels, boxes, and tape (these are offered free of charge at the post office)
    • Blank retail "rain checks" or blank store coupons where the buyer can fill in the item and amount the coupon is worth
    • Products designed to fake the results of a urine or drug test
    • Reflective spray paint or license plate covers or diffusers
    • Other items similar to those listed here
  • Examples of activities
    • Basing Feedback ratings on another member's decision not to engage in illegal activity may be considered Feedback extortion.
    • Falsifying customs declarations or having an item marked as "gift" in order to avoid customs fees
    • Winning an item and requesting that the seller falsify the customs or taxation documents related to the item

When we receive a report that a buyer asked a seller to falsify customs documents, we only review the report if the seller's listing description clearly specifies who is responsible for paying the customs fees, duties, import taxes, and any related charges. Sellers who sell internationally should follow our customs requirements.

Note: We may also remove listings as requested by law enforcement agencies.

Activity on eBay is required to follow this policy, the eBay User Agreement and all applicable laws, as well as respect the rights of third parties. If it doesn’t, eBay may take action consistent with applicable laws and the eBay User Agreement, and may even be legally required to do so. Such actions may include, as an example only: Removing the listing or other content, issuing a warning, restricting activity or account suspension.

Reporting a violation

If you find a listing that encourages illegal activity, you can report it.

If you sold an item and your buyer asks you to commit customs fraud, you can report it.

Why does eBay have this policy?

Since encouraging illegal activity may be prohibited by law, we urge you to follow all laws and regulations. You're not allowed to use eBay to encourage other members to engage in illegal activity.

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