Written by Nick Heer.

Walmart Marketplace Seller Offers Fake $17 30TB Hard Drive That’s Actually Two Small SD Cards in a Trench Coat

Joseph Cox, Vice:

Ray, a cybersecurity researcher, who saw a similar item on online retailer AliExpress, knew the offer was too good to be true. He bought the drive, suspecting it was a scam, and took it apart to find out what exactly was happening here. Sure enough, he found what amounted to a different item cosplaying as a big SSD. Inside were two small memory cards and the item had been programmed in such a way so as to appear it had 30TB of storage when plugged into a computer.

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As Ray tweeted out his findings, another user, SM4Tech, found that the drive was available on Walmart. Motherboard then contacted Walmart for comment.

As Cox writes, it may have appeared that Walmart was selling the drive, but it was actually a marketplace listing. Like Amazon, Walmart lets third-party vendors use its online store to sell their wares. Some vendors are household names, while others take the same Scrabble bag approach to branding as Amazon sellers.

Amazon and Walmart are two of many retailers you probably recognize which offer an online marketplace for third-party sellers, including Best Buy and Canadian retail giant Loblaw. Staples experimented with marketplace sales, too, but I could not find any current information about its program. These products are usually offered alongside those sold by the retailer itself, with few visual clues that they may have different return policies or expectations of quality.