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Email ID confusion (not mine)
Old 05-27-2015, 05:16 PM   #1
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Email ID confusion (not mine)

An interesting situation I've posted on in the past. Some nice folks, mostly in Scotland, share the same name (or first initials and last name) as mine and think they have the gmail id(s) I have been using for years. One is a teacher who signs up for training classes. Another signed up for the Gov't Scottish Ancestry. The UK Pinterest was a real PITA, they have no unsubscribe function. Job related, especially interviews, worry me that someone will get booted. It is not clear why they think these ids are available for them, but no spam or phishing.

The most recent is a lady who opened a PayPal UK account. PP sent the welcome email, then a verification email. There is no "wrong email" option. Now they are sending receipts for transactions. I sent PayPal an email letting them know. Their response
Quote:
Thanks for contacting PayPal! We want to answer your questions, but you emailed us from an unconfirmed email address. Please disregard any email receipt you may have received as we will not be contacting you back via this email address. For security reasons, we can only provide account assistance when your message is sent from an email address that is confirmed on your PayPal account.
They don't recognize the email address so they won't do anything about it. Sigh. For this PayPal account the person's full name and address are on most of the transaction receipts. I'm thinking of sending a letter to her letting her know.

Anyone else ever have this problem? I feel bad for some of the people but don't really have a way to let them know.
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Old 05-27-2015, 05:29 PM   #2
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I've had a similar situation. There's a very nice guy who lives in PA that shares my first and last name. I've gotten notices that his kid's softball games were postponed, etc. from people who missed the middle initial in his email address. His own mother sent me a photo of her new fish tank!

Based on some context clues in the emails, I tracked down a work email for the intended recipient, and let him know what was going on. The first sentence of his reply was "Wow, this is the weirdest email I have ever received!"

Thankfully, I've never gotten any sensitive/financial information.
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Old 05-27-2015, 05:39 PM   #3
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A somewhat similar problem here.
A guy in Canada uses the same email address but with one letter different, so I frequently get emails intended for him.

When this started happening several years ago, I contacted him to make him aware of it, and he just said he would try to fix it, but many of the people he worked with just don't pay attention to details.

It still occurs, but not as frequently. The problem is that we both like the email address, each in our own preferred spelling, so neither of us is likely to drop it.
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Old 05-27-2015, 06:33 PM   #4
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I think that I have a unique name.... IOW, I have not see anybody with my first and last name anywhere.... so, no, I do not have this problem...
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Old 05-27-2015, 07:24 PM   #5
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Signing up for most things of any importance (like a Paypal account) requires a response to validate, so this seems kind of odd to me. How would Paypal get a wrong email address for someone (I understand the person typo'd their own, but then the verification...)?

Catch-22, huh? Wrong email, but they won't talk to you because it's a wrong email!


I had something similar recently. I got a couple emails from UPS (or Fed Ex?) about a pending delivery. I double check, and I didn't have anything coming on that day. I'm thinking this is a phishing attempt, but it seems too targeted - the address is another house on our street. I got a similar response from the company - the account owner must have done it, nothing they can do. My email address isn't anything very generic, it just seems beyond reason to think that an account tied to a delivery service would get a miss-typed email that was valid, but belonged to someone a few doors down from them! It could have been anyone in the world with a similar gmail account - why someone a few doors down?

They must have figured it out, I have not got one since (got two total), but I was going to walk over there if it happened again, to let them know.

-ERD50
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Old 05-27-2015, 07:31 PM   #6
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Somewhat similar - I have an unusual last name and I "friend-ed" a person with the same first and last name as me in Germany, on a lark. Then the goofball started posting really bigoted things and they were ending up on my Facebook page with my name (since we were "friends").

Had to do an emergency DeFacing.
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Old 05-27-2015, 09:29 PM   #7
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No,

I have registered an Internet domain based upon my last name. I then use firstname@lastname.org as my email address and have it forward to whatever ISP or email service that I am using this year. I also set up email accounts for mom and dad under this same domain. This worked out real nice when Dad passed last year in that I was able to redirect all his email to a convenient location.

My main reason for this was to have a stable email address for hopefully the rest of my life and not be locked into any particular email provider.

Fortunately nobody seems to have a similar email address so I haven't received the misdirected mails that you have.

I offer this as a suggestion for those that aren't permanently attached to their current email address.

I can provider further details if anyone is interested.

-gauss
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Similar situation
Old 05-28-2015, 09:17 AM   #8
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Similar situation

Had someone start using my email address several years ago. If you don't have a way of contacting them, go to one of the sites they signed up with, try to log in, click on the link that says "Forgot Password" it will probably email you the password or a way to change it. After you are able to log in, you may find their contact information(Phone number). Called somebody at 4:00am in Australia to tell them to stop using my email address
They stopped...
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Old 05-28-2015, 11:56 AM   #9
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As I suspected, this is not unique.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gauss View Post

My main reason for this was to have a stable email address for hopefully the rest of my life and not be locked into any particular email provider.
This is what my best friend did when he retired. He had to change his email address and decided he only wanted to do that once more in his life. An option to keep in mind.

Quote:
Originally Posted by justlikebike View Post
Had someone start using my email address several years ago. If you don't have a way of contacting them, go to one of the sites they signed up with, try to log in, click on the link that says "Forgot Password" it will probably email you the password or a way to change it. After you are able to log in, you may find their contact information(Phone number). Called somebody at 4:00am in Australia to tell them to stop using my email address
They stopped...
I can see how that might work, but feel a bit uncomfortable logging into someone else's account to get their personal information. It might also be unlawful in some areas.
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Old 05-28-2015, 03:43 PM   #10
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I also created my own domain. I can have an unlimited number of usernames and can forward them as I see fit. This has been the best solution and haven't had any issues since doing this.

In one of my junk gmail accounts, I get occasional crap that someone else signed up for....but no harm has come from it so far.

Sent from my mobile device so please excuse grammatical errors.
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Old 05-28-2015, 09:11 PM   #11
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I had someone set up an email account to one of my email addresses. It never got finished as the guy who set it up could not get the emails for validation. Unfortunately the email is hung in never land with paypal. I can not use that email for paypal as it is locked by the other user. I could not get paypal to free the account as I was not the paypal account owner.
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