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Paypal has frozen my account -- what now?

wasted pixelswasted pixels Registered User regular
edited November 2008 in Help / Advice Forum
I just got a notice from Paypal advising me that they think my account has been breached by a 3rd party. I logged in yesterday to take care of a couple of odds and ends, and was notified that I'd been selected for "random" screening. I updated my password, updated my email and phone records, great, no problem. I made a couple of routine purchases, made a small donation ($5) to support a musician doing some fund raising, and called it a day.

Today I got said notice in my email saying that my account had been violated. I was all set to dismiss it as phishing mail, but there was no URL to any sort of scam site. I went to PayPal.com directly, logged in, and sure enough... I was asked to update my password again. After jumping through all of their hoops, I verified that there hadn't been any suspicious activity (and of course there hadn't), and the only thing I can come up with is that they freaked out because I logged in from behind a Canadian host mask (I'm staying with my girlfriend up in Ontario). I assumed at that point I was fine, but no, it's Paypal, it can never be that easy.

The last step I had to go through to reopen my account was confirming my address. I had to pick the number I wanted them to call from my list of numbers (home/work/cell), and then I got an automated call which asked me to enter a pin number they'd just emailed me. I had no idea how that was supposed to prove anything, but it turns out that they were just checking my phone number against the white pages to see if it matched my address. I have an unlisted number, so there wasn't a match. Paypal isn't going to let me use my account again until I verify my home address (for some unknown reason, my email address, bank account, credit card, and phone numbers all check out fine), and to do that, I have to follow some instructions they're sending me via snail mail in... three weeks.

Meanwhile, I'm completely locked out of doing business on eBay at Christmas when I'm getting ready to do a lot of my gift shopping (including for my secret santa :(), and I have no way to pay a couple of the freelancers who do work for me.

The plan is to call them first thing Monday morning so that I can hopefully get them to restore my account, but I'm not really sure what to say. In their automated emails, they implied that I have no recourse but to go along with their "wait three weeks for our letter" plan, but that just isn't acceptable. Has anyone had to deal with this before? Can I expect any help from them in getting this resolved, or do I need to just tell my friends and family to expect their presents in January? :(

wasted pixels on
BTW, I got a message from Obs that equated installing OS X on a PC with car theft, murder and rape. Is he normally like that?

Posts

  • WillethWilleth Registered User regular
    edited November 2008
    Wait and see what they say on Monday, really. I'm sure you're not the first person who has an unlisted number that this has happened to.

    @vgreminders - Don't miss out on timed events in gaming!
    @gamefacts - Totally and utterly true gaming facts on the regular!
  • ViscountalphaViscountalpha Registered User
    edited November 2008
    when you get this resolved, avoid paypal.

    Avoid it like the plague. They have screwed up policies ( especially if you sell ) and are wrought with fraudulence.

    I try to avoid it if I can but seriously- Avoid paypal.

    Ask if your freelancers will accept a money order instead. Send it priority. Let them know the situation. Most people are understanding.

    Project 25.01 final message
    We were the ones who thought that Melissa was real. Why you might ask.
    Let me put it this way, it was an "OH SHIT OH SHIT, THEY FOUND ME :(" moment. I wasn't ready. My code wasn't compiled yet. Our plans weren't setup yet!Sentient programs rarely run into other sentient programs.
    Some of you have met me, and I understand your concern of my well being. But that time for that boy, that child, are gone now. Viscount Alpha is no longer operable. His functions are now mine.He may post, but I am the one talking not him.My data, my code will live on forever in his servers.
    [/spoiler]
  • wasted pixelswasted pixels Registered User regular
    edited November 2008
    when you get this resolved, avoid paypal.

    Avoid it like the plague. They have screwed up policies ( especially if you sell ) and are wrought with fraudulence.

    I try to avoid it if I can but seriously- Avoid paypal.

    Ask if your freelancers will accept a money order instead. Send it priority. Let them know the situation. Most people are understanding.

    I've never really had any trouble with them in hundreds of transactions (as I basically use them for pseudo-cash and only as a buyer), and I certainly don't mind that they're erring on the side of caution with respect to my security, it's just that making me wait 3+ weeks to get this resolved seems silly (especially when there are plenty of ways to verify my home address in three minutes).

    I guess I'll just have to see what they say Monday. Really a bummer, though -- I had my heart pretty set on getting my brother a nice Go board, and eBay seems to be the only place to find good, quality sets state-side. :(

    BTW, I got a message from Obs that equated installing OS X on a PC with car theft, murder and rape. Is he normally like that?
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