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Paypal scam (sort of)
Old 10-11-2010, 12:27 PM   #1
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Paypal scam (sort of)

We use PayPal for purchases from various places you may not want to give your credit card number to. Been working great, we pay off our credit card that's hooked to PP every month, never been any issues. So suddenly, today, we can't make any more PP purchases unless we either give them our bank information or open a PP Mastercard through them. They call it becoming verified, but what's to verify at this point? We've had the account for 3 years at least. Being FIREd, DW had time to call and go up through 5 (count them, 5!) levels of supervisors looking for an explanation. We never got one, other that "that's how we do it". And they were perfectly willing to let us walk away rather than change the policy. The last supervisor, when asked who was her boss, said she is the highest it goes. So DW asked if her name was Scott Thompson (CEO). Surprisingly, it wasn't! So DW is waiting to be contacted by the "Executive Resolution Team", which I suspect is the first guy we spoke to before we began the escalation.

So anyway, we still want to use something to separate our financial info from the people in Hong Kong that we buy stuff from. And there doesn't seem to be a valid competitor. So I gave in and linked my PenFed account to the PP account. It's just the $10 I used to set the account up when I was looking into doing a refi through them, so I figure it's pretty safe. Then I go back into PP to set our deffault payment method back to the credit card we've been using for 3 years there. What do you know!? You can't! You have to change the payment method each time you buy something.

I'm curious. If you forget to change the payment method during a purchase and it goes to the default account with the $10 in it, will the transaction fail? Or will it bounce, incurring a fee? When Scott Thompson calls us , I'll definitely ask about that.

Grrrr...

So this is mostly just a bitch session. I promised them I would spread the word about their perfidity far and wide. This is one stop along the way. Anybody know of a way to do online purchasing without using PP and without giving up your credit card number to the "merchants"?
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Old 10-11-2010, 12:49 PM   #2
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I recall running into that roadblock a couple of years ago after having successfully used PP for many prior eBay transactions. I bit the bullet and linked PP to my checking account. I've had no problems. The PP transaction acts just like a debit card transaction.
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Old 10-11-2010, 01:53 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harley View Post
Anybody know of a way to do online purchasing without using PP and without giving up your credit card number to the "merchants"?
They're more worried about terrorists and HSA than they are about your personal info. Especially for those shady Hong Kong deals.

FWIW, the checking account is PayPal's default payment source, so you have to vigilantly change it to a credit card each time.

Another option might be to use your credit card with a one-time number, for example the "Shop Safe" system:
Quote:
ShopSafe is a free service that allows you to create a temporary card number, expiration date and security code each time you make an online purchase. This number links directly to your real credit card account number but keeps your card number completely private and protected. The ShopSafe number is used just like your credit card—a merchant never knows it's not your real credit card.
That's what FIA Card Services calls it, so other companies probably use a different name.
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Old 10-11-2010, 02:04 PM   #4
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Another option might be to use your credit card with a one-time number, for example the "Shop Safe" system:

That's what FIA Card Services calls it, so other companies probably use a different name.

Yeah, I've been using the virtual CC number generator on my Citibank MC account for all online purchases for the past ten years. It's free and works well; a virtual CC number is only valid for a single purchase, and it shows up as a line item on our regular CC statement.
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Old 10-11-2010, 02:09 PM   #5
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I get a little irritated too at having to click through a couple screens to manually change to charge my CC instead of the checking account I have the account linked to. I have been a verified PP user for years though.
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Old 10-11-2010, 02:16 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by harley View Post
Anybody know of a way to do online purchasing without using PP and without giving up your credit card number to the "merchants"?
I think Discover offers a plan in which they generate a novel CC# for each transaction, but each one is linked to you account.

Ha
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Old 10-11-2010, 02:39 PM   #7
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I must be doing it wrong. I last used PP for an Ebay purchase in August 2010. PP is linked to a CC. The purchase showed up on the credit card statement without manually changing anything.
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Old 10-11-2010, 03:03 PM   #8
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I must be doing it wrong. I last used PP for an Ebay purchase in August 2010. PP is linked to a CC. The purchase showed up on the credit card statement without manually changing anything.
Until you hit that $10K lifetime limit and suddenly have to become "verified" the process works just like you described.

I found an interesting article from the NYTimes about this situation. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/28/yo...28haggler.html I guess this reporter found a more straightforward supervisor than we did.

Quote:
“If we asked people to verify when they signed up,” he said, “how many people do you think would sign up?”
My DW made the same offer to them, that she would be glad to pay a fee upfront rather than have to give them our banking info. We didn't even get the "that's a possibility someday" response the reporter got.

The virtual CC number is an option I hadn't thought of, although I knew it exists. I may go that way after I get tired of having to manually change my payment method each time. But while I still have the energy I'm going to do the manual change and cost them the CC fees.
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Old 10-12-2010, 12:26 AM   #9
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Also, think twice if you want to switch from a personal to a business/premier account -- if you switch, you cannot go back to personal on that ebay account.

I switched, the fees were higher, and couldn't switch back unless I trashed the ebay account (which I didn't want to do because it had good feedback)

But now maybe fees are same ? https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/websc...y-fees-outside

Paypal is all about poor service and maximizing their profits...
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Old 10-12-2010, 12:42 AM   #10
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Paypal is all about poor service and maximizing their profits...
"They lose a little customer on each transaction, but boy do they make it up on volume."

I think that's how the saying goes...
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:20 AM   #11
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Unfortunately they do not lose - because they have a captive market with ebay......
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Old 10-12-2010, 11:31 AM   #12
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Hmmm... I have not had to connect my checking account to them... and never will.... If in the future they require it, I will not be shopping at anyplace the requires PP...


Funny thing.... I took a look at my account and it was not updated with my new address... even though I have bought things since I moved... strange....
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:35 PM   #13
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When I reached their $10,000 limit on ebay purchases, Paypal gave me the option of verifying with their CC or my bank account. I chose their CC. Did not want them having my bank account. I then went to change the default payment to my old CC which was on file for the first $10,000. It would not let me, but they still gave me the option of linking my bank account. I won't. They really want that bank account number. Too bad, their not getting it from me. As a result I loose the 1% rebate I used to get from my old CC. Dang it! That 1% is like another fee to me now!
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Old 10-12-2010, 10:33 PM   #14
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When I reached their $10,000 limit on ebay purchases, Paypal gave me the option of verifying with their CC or my bank account. I chose their CC. Did not want them having my bank account. I then went to change the default payment to my old CC which was on file for the first $10,000. It would not let me, but they still gave me the option of linking my bank account. I won't. They really want that bank account number. Too bad, their not getting it from me. As a result I loose the 1% rebate I used to get from my old CC. Dang it! That 1% is like another fee to me now!
I, on the other hand, went with a sacrificial bank account, figuring if you open a CC with them they get your entire credit report, which has all your bank accounts as well as a host of other information. Now I just have to make sure to always change my payment method to my Discover card.

By the way, that's not a $10K limit on eBay purchases, it's a $10K limit on any purchases. We use PP for all sorts of Amazon based buying, and seldom buy anything from eBay.
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Old 10-13-2010, 08:18 AM   #15
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The scums bags sweep $100 from our checking account recently for no apparent reason that we could determine. My wife (the ebay account holder) had to call paypal to get our money back.

She continues to have the account but my attitude is both her ebay and paypal accounts should be terminated.
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:27 AM   #16
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The scums bags sweep $100 from our checking account recently for no apparent reason that we could determine. My wife (the ebay account holder) had to call paypal to get our money back.

She continues to have the account but my attitude is both her ebay and paypal accounts should be terminated.


And there is the reason I do NOT let anybody have access to my banking account.... EVER... once they get it once, they always have it...
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Old 10-14-2010, 09:56 AM   #17
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They certainly do it this way because they lose 1-3% (?) for each credit card purchase versus a bank account purchase. I'll bet every supervisor knew that, but there was a company memo that warned them not to acknowledge that to the customers.

I also find it annoying to have to change the payment method every time (I've only forgotten once), but here's a way to look at it that might make it less irritating: Your paypal use is being subsidized by everyone who fails to change the payment method.

It's like buying something that's free or very cheap after a mail-in rebate. It's a colossal pain to fill out the info in the little boxes, mail it in, deposit small check, etc., but your savings are paid for by all the people who never claim their rebate.
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Old 10-14-2010, 06:09 PM   #18
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why not just open another paypal account with a different EMAIL address (and credit card if needed). That should carry you for another 10k.

FWIW I've used PP for lake rentals for the last few years. It's the 4% cut they take that bothers me ... linking in my bank account was a no-brainer to allow xfers of the rents to checking. I guess I am on the other side of it ...
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