Fake SSDs: What To Look For...

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware' started by Smoove Grooves, Mar 6, 2019.

  1. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    Client buys Crucial SSD from Ebay. Asks me to clone his drive, not migrate.

    The initial tell was that the metal lid part of the chassis didn't have slits at the corners like my legit models do..
    I was hoping it might just be be a new design.
    Upon formatting, there were so many clues. But one detail was quite interesting; I'll get to that.
    So the vendor was MOAI Electronics Corporation, China. Not Crucial. They do use many international factories, they tell me, but vendor should still show as Crucial.
    There must be some code in the SSD, as a Mac will show the full 525Gb, but any other diagnostic software showed 80+Gb less.
    Item is lighter in weight compared to legits.
    Product ID is incorrect.

    But here's the interesting part, I thought.
    I was 99.9% sure it was fake, but 'phoned Crucial. Call-centre hung up twice when realising it wasn't bought from them, but eventually I managed to keep someone on the line to be able to check the S/N.
    S/N number on box is legit, manufactured 3 years ago, with 1 year warranty left.
    S/N of item, still 12 digits, totally unrecognised on database because it didn't conform to S/N specs:
    Legit S/N's will have 5 numbers first, prior to any letter. This fake had 3 numbers, then letter.
    This is only seen when connected to a computer, it's not marked physically.
    If someone just went by the box S/N being legit, they'd be screwed!
    (Although I thought that MOAI Electronics was a good enough indicator! lol)
    Even if the item S/N did conform to specs, it possibly still wouldn't check out on the database. So the scammers haven't got it sussed yet, if they have to pair it with a legit S/N.

    All this, because the client wanted to save £10!

    Finally, client will get refund from Ebay, keep the item*, and buy legit from Crucial.
    And I will start over again!

    UPD: *Misinformed by Ebay rep; in order for refund, item had to be returned.
    Seller did not respond for a month, until Ebay stepped in. Seller then tells us "Will refund you if item comes back sealed as when sent out"!
    Ebay said (quote) "That is totally unacceptable". Obviously.
    Even if seller had written that in listing (he hadn't), it wouldn't matter, as it goes against Ebay policy. Obviously we couldn't find it was a fake without opening it.
    Ebay said they'd personally refund if seller didn't refund.
    ...Seller refunded! (Or else lose his account eventually!)
    All good! Hoorah!

    Seller continues to sell, and was still selling same items and similar whilst ignoring our comms...
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2019
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  3. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    Oh I see I forgot to list the first obvious tell: the metal piece of the chassis didn't have slits at the corners like a legit.
    Will upd op.
     
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  4. lysergyk

    lysergyk Member

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    in China, HDD, SSD, laptops etc are pretty much the same price as anywhere else in the world...so if the offer is too good to be true then it IS too good to be true. Actually, if you buy high capacity drivers it is often cheaper to buy in the US or Europe directly as most of the time Chinese consumers just favour mid-range products and that keeps the prices of high end hardware higher than you'd expect (and it's also more difficult to find a seller). The only real advantage is that in China you can get stuffs directly from factories and that's usually only available to manufacturers (tough you may be able to find some on eBay too at times).

    as you said for 10 quids, it is just plain silly, better go with the manufacturer...
     
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  5. yakhi

    yakhi Newbie

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    Thanks for this valuable information. Didn't know there are fake SSDs too.
     
  6. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    Hi @yakhi & Welcome!
    You said "too"...what else have you found that was fake?
     
  7. wasgedn

    wasgedn Banned

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    are their any ssd or hdd's which not made in china ?

    what cloning app you use to clone drives?
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2019
  8. secretworld

    secretworld Member

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    SD cards (and sdhc sdhx) are a big problem even with European retailers
     
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  9. webhead

    webhead Rock Star

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    That reminds me a story with aliexpress:

    [​IMG]

    A friend bought it as Samsung 1TB. It was a good price. Then told me it's pretty good and windows tells her it is 1TB. But it's too slow at writing. Then I figure it out, there's a Hitachi 20GB inside of it :) She already confirmed the deal, so there was no refund. As @lysergyk said, it was a too good price. I still keep the hitachi. Sometimes using it as a flash drive on tv.
     
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  10. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    Hey @wasgedn bro!

    I have always used Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC) by Bombich Software, for a perfectly bootable clone. It's always been brilliant.
    I think it's Mac only though. Get it from the dev, not anywhere else. A months free trial, but I think it used to continue beyond that. Can't recall, as I got the newer version recently.
    Life with Apple is horrible; our last 32/64 OS was many years ago. Unlike the awesome W7, which still accepts newer software!
    Cloning is a great way to quickly try out a newer OS, and see how many plugins don't work!
    Plus, who really enjoys taking days reinstalling 100's of AU and VST's, eh?

    EH? @jazzzz lol :winker:
    Soz. Couldn't resist!
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2019
  11. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    @webhead
    OH MY DAYS! That's really effing cheeky!
     
  12. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    @wasgedn @secretworld
    The thing is, Crucial told me they have contracts internationally to undertake various aspects of production. (Not that the call-centre could confirm or give an accurate list of them!)
    So I guess there are boxes, stickers, all sorts floating around to be used on fakes.
    MAYBE, IF A LINE MANAGER ISN'T LOOKING, SOMEONE CAN 'RE'-PRINT LEGIT SERIALS ON THE SAME PLASTIC STICKERS that seal the box.

    Btw, I will update the original post tomorrow; it's taken a slightly strange turn...
     
  13. SineWave

    SineWave Audiosexual

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    Well, since we're telling sad stories about buying hardware online, I'll tell you some.

    One of my clients found a good Lenovo laptop online for 110 euro on a rather legit looking website. He used his credit card to buy it. He never got anything. He was lucky they didn't take more money from his account. I wouldn't buy it, because that laptop costs at least about 400 euro in a store. It's just impossible to get such laptop new at that price.

    Another story, but far more sad. My best friend wanted to buy a Lexicon 480XL with a remote [LARC] on e-bay for 7000 euro [or 5000, not sure]. He never got it. :sad: Admitedly it happened about 10 years ago, and e-bay scams were far more prevalent in those times.

    Be extremely careful people about buying online! :mad:

    I bought loads of stuff from e-bay and never encountered any problems, except that a guy who sold me Novation RemoteSL claimed it was new and used only once, and it did look new in the photo, but what I got was absolutely used RemoteSL, however still in very good condition. But used about 666 times. :rofl:You can tell this shit. He probably bought a new one, took a photo of it, and sold his old one on e-bay. Lovely jubbly! :rofl:
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2019
  14. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    The problem that's happening with Amazon at the moment, is that all similar products get thrown in the same bin prior to shipping, so it's pot luck if a buyer gets e.g. a legit SSD or a fake!
    A machine is used to 'smell-test' the packaging. That's all.

    I.E. You may have provided legit SSD's that you bought from Crucial, but they get mixed with my fakes.
    Your customer may get one of my fakes! You see?
     
  15. SineWave

    SineWave Audiosexual

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    A bit off-topic, sorry, but I have to say this... :winker:

    I wouldn't be praising W7 [or any Windows for that matter] that much, Smoove Grooves, as cloning doesn't work for it, unless you're transferring it to a same or very similar computer. With any Windows you just have to install it freshly, and install the drivers. Cloning works perfectly with MacOS and Linux, with pretty much any computer, though. That's one of the reasons I love them better, purely from OS quality and convenience point of view. So when you use MacOS or Linux, it is so much easier to just clone the OS and use it on another computer. That's absolutely nifty innit? :wink:
     
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  16. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    Only praising W7 re. the fact that it still works for 32/64bit as Snow Leopard 10.6.8 did!
    I am a Mac person for 20 years, and have never tried to clone Windows.
     
  17. Smoove Grooves

    Smoove Grooves Platinum Record

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    @webhead
    A bit like the Crucial did.
    So how do they make the capacity show up incorrectly? Something in the tiny EFI partition?
     
  18. Willum

    Willum Rock Star

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    My ex girlfiends love. :(
     
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  19. bluerover

    bluerover Audiosexual

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    FYI - Watch out for fake Sony MDR7509 and any Sennheiser Headphones
     
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  20. webhead

    webhead Rock Star

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    I have no idea man. It must be from the additional part, because when I use the hitachi alone, it shows me 20GB and everything is normal. It's beyond my electronic information
     
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  21. SineWave

    SineWave Audiosexual

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    That's why it's in external enclosure. They found a way to hack the IDE to USB interface's firmware to show whatever capacity they want. It's actually not that hard since these super cheap IDE to USB interfaces surely have firmware you can hack into easily. :sad:

    Selling prehistoric 20 GB IDE garbage as a 1TB USB drive. Fascinating what greed does to people. :(

    I wonder if that enclosure can be used normally with other IDE drives, if you have one in the attic or somewhere... probably not, unless you "hack it back". I have a 160GB IDE drive somewhere that's still working. At least I think so.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2019
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