Mr. Dr. Grumpy Mister, M.D. aka the Twelfth Doctor (kwanboa) wrote in bad_service,
Mr. Dr. Grumpy Mister, M.D. aka the Twelfth Doctor

Don't ever get on Paypal's bad side.

I've been a Paypal user for years. I have three accounts, hooked to my American Visa check card, one hooked to my Canadian bank account, and one hooked to my American Mastercard. I use them all, although the Canadian one gets the most flogging since it's the account I use the majority of the year.

I got notification in October that the one linked to the Visa was suspended due to "possible third-party access". Of course, I knew this was bs, so I went to Paypal's Online Resolution Center to fix it. They wanted me to add my bank account and get verified, first of all. Yeah, see, the problem with that is that bank account doesn't give me free checks, just the card. So I don't have all that checking info. Since the Visa's hooked into the checking account anyway, why would I enter redundant info? Strike one. Then, in order to "verify" my existence, they wanted me to receive a phone call. Okay, well, let me change my phone number from my permanent home one to the one I have here on campus in Canada. Actually, NO! I can't! It's an American account! I can't have anything but American info! Okay, whatever, I'll deal with it over break when I go home. The final step is to change my password. Once it's made me go through the password changing process THREE times I just bloody give up.

EDIT: I'll make it very clear. The email I got said nothing other than "Go to our Resolution Center on our site to fix this." I checked the certificates on that site. Everything checked out fine. I don't get the scam emails to that account because it gets no spam, whatsoever. I am not the newest kid on the Internet block, I have been online since 1993. Phishing is the oldest trick in the book and I DID NOT FALL for it, I am sorry to burst y'all's bubbles.

I go home for Christmas and find there's no way to access the verification process I had gone through before and that my account was "permanently" suspended and I could not "appeal" it. WhatEVER. I decided I'd just use other people's accounts when I needed to use my check card through PP.

I get my "third and final" notice last night that I need to do something about my account. (Excuse me, where was my second notice?) So I haul up the Customer Service contact form and get a bit stroppy...

I have tried to resolve this before and been met with nothing but trouble from your site. I study abroad and cannot drop everything to fly to the address of this account and answer the phone for you! My account has never been accessed by a third party, I am tired of changing my password and no I do not have my banking account info handy. I expect an actual person to review this and tell me what I can do about this account, if nothing more than to release the credit card so I can sign up with another online payment website. This is ridiculous. I have multiple PayPal accounts (owing to the two-country deal of being an international student) and will NOT hesitate to close them if this is not resolved in my favour immediately.

Dear [Me],

Thank you for contacting PayPal. We apologize for the delay in
responding to your service request.

To remove a limitation on your account, simply complete all steps listed
in the 'Steps to Remove Limitations' table. You will be asked to enter a
PIN number to lift the limitation. Be sure to print the page or write
the PIN down.

To receive your PIN number and remove the limitation on your account,
please follow the steps below.

1. Log in to your account at by entering
your email address and password in the Member Login box.

2. Click the 'Resolution Center' link.

3. In the 'Steps to Remove Limitations' box, click the 'Resolve'
button in the 'Action' column.

4. Select the phone number at the credit card billing address to
· A credit card is required to remove your limitation

5. Select the time to receive the automated call.
6. Click 'Continue'.

7. You will receive a 'Confirm Location by Phone' page, and your
4-digit Phone Confirmation PIN.
· Write down your PIN or print the page

8. You will receive an automated phone call from PayPal in the time
you selected and be asked to enter your Phone Confirmation PIN.

9. After completing the phone call, you will receive an email with
your Phone Confirmation results.

Thank you for using PayPal for your online payment needs.

PayPal Account Review Department
PayPal, an eBay Company

In other words, a freaking cookie-cutter message. They didn't read a thing. So I get back on the Contact Us form...

Re: Restricted :auto-uaa (Routing Code: [A Hell Of A Lot Of Numbers, This Was The Subject Line Of The Previous Email]
Carlene, the representative who replied, obviously did not read the email. First off, she tells me that I need a credit card to "verify" my account, completely neglecting to notice that my account IS a credit card. Then, she tells me what I already know, I must "verify" who I am by phone. Paypal Customer Service, please LISTEN this time: I am *three thousand kilometres and one country* away from the billing address of that credit
card and the phone number attached to it. You will not let me change my contact number to the Canadian one I can be reached at, so I have no way of resolving this.
Also, it says my suspension cannot be appealed. Can I ask why?
Please provide real answers from a real human this time, not a canned

What does PayPal write back? Oh, you guessed it...a cookie-cutter response of utter stupidity.

Dear [Me],

Thank you for contacting PayPal.

Please remember these steps to help protect your PayPal account from
Unauthorized Account Access.

Emails - Make sure they are sent from PayPal

1. If you receive an email and are unsure whether it is from PayPal,
open a new web browser (e.g., Internet Explorer or Netscape) and type in
the following: Don't click on any link in an
email which seems suspicious to you.

2. Some spoof websites will send emails that pretend to come from
PayPal to entice you to log in at the spoof URL. Be extremely cautious
of emails that direct you to a website that asks for sensitive

3. Stay safe; don't respond to emails asking for any of the

· Your password and email address combination
· Credit card numbers
· Bank account numbers
· Social security numbers
· Drivers license number
· First and Last Names

If you have surrendered financial or password information to a
suspicious email or website, promptly report this to the issuing
institution as well as change your password and security answers on your
PayPal account. This can be completed in the Profile section of your

Email Greeting -

· PayPal will never send you an email with the greeting "Dear
PayPal User" or "Dear PayPal Member". Emails initiated by PayPal will
address you by your first and last name, or the business name associated
with your PayPal account.

· Please note that the automatic response you get from us may not
address you by name.
Always log into the PayPal site

· PayPal will only ask for information AFTER you have securely
logged in.

· For your security, PayPal will never ask you to re-enter your
full bank account, credit, or debit card number without providing you at
least the LAST TWO DIGITS of the number. These digits let you know that
we already know the full number and are asking you for the rest of it.
Beware of any website or email asking for these numbers for
"verification" that does not PROVE that it knows the number by providing
at least the last two digits

· Use Account Guard on the eBay toolbar. If you use Internet
Explorer, download the eBay toolbar. Account Guard helps ensure you are
on PayPal or eBay

Website pages - make sure that they are hosted by PayPal

1. When using the PayPal service, always ensure that the URL address
listed at the top of the browser is The 's' ensures that the website is secure. Even
if the URL contains the word 'PayPal', it may not be a PayPal webpage.

2. Look for the 'lock' symbol that appears in the lower right hand
corner of the browser. This symbol indicates that it is a secure site.

Do not download attachments, software updates, or any application to
your computer via a link you received in an email. PayPal will never
send you an attachment or software update to install on your computer.

Passwords - keep it on PayPal

1. Use a unique password for the PayPal account and change it every
30-60 days.
2. The password should be one that is not used on any other site,
service, or login.

If you think you have received a fraudulent email, forward the entire
email, including the header information to and then
delete the email from your mailbox. Never click any links or attachments
in a suspicious email.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us again.

PayPal Resolution Services
PayPal, an eBay Company

So they're telling me they think the PREVIOUS email was fake? What the CREEPING CRAP?! I get back on the website and am about to let them HAVE it when...

You've got mail!

Okay, reveal your secrets...
Dear [Me],

Our review is complete and we have restored your account.

We appreciate your patience and thank you for your help in making PayPal
the safest and most trusted online payment solution.


Right. Fine. Resolved. Thank you. But your entire Customer Service Department needs a friggin' overhaul, if they can't even verify each OTHER let alone the customers!

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    Well,  I unofficially long my last non - grapevine tested  and advice from Facebook nurses and things.  Add it id's , it is. I'm going to harshly…

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