PayPal wants me to become verified...why do they need my bank account number?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Bob McLaughlin, Aug 22, 2004.

  1. Bob McLaughlin

    Bob McLaughlin Screenwriter

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    I got an e-mail saying that I am close to my "sending limit" for PayPal, and that I should become "Verified". They want me to give them my bank account number?!? This seems rather suspicious to me. Why would they want my bank account number? Isn't that just giving them permission to take all my funds?

    What sucks is that I won't be able to use PayPal anymore unless I get verified. Has anyone found a way around this? I don't just want to hand over my account to a bunch of strangers.
     
  2. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    I'm not "verified" and choose to use a credit card through Paypal for paypal purchases. I've rung up quite a bit this past month through Paypal and haven't gotten an email about "upgrading" my paypal account to "verified" status.

    I don't give my bank account info to anyone (which is why I don't do direct deposit and online payment).

    Don't do it if you're not comfortable with just anyone pulling funds out of your bank account.

    Now the main detriment is using Paypal is when the seller only accepts paypal payment via bank transfer (i.e. no credit cards - because Paypal charges roughly a 6% surcharge to accept credit card payments), and then your Paypal account is useless for those seller, and I avoid those sellers).
     
  3. Mick Wright

    Mick Wright Second Unit

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    Click the link in the e-mail and see where it takes you. I'm willing to bet it won't be paypal.com (although it will certainly look like it). I'm no fan of paypal, but the majority of the people who claim to have been ripped of by using paypal probably fell for one of these fake e-mails.

    Btw, don't submit any information at that bogus web page.
     
  4. Mark_vdH

    Mark_vdH Screenwriter

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    Sure sounds like a scam. Just report it at paypal.com:

    https://www.paypal.com/nl/cgi-bin/we...security&flow=

    I have another PayPal-related question: Can you use the balance on your account for payment, or do you have to transfer it to a bank account?

    (I've sold my first eBay item last week, but when I paid an item this evening PayPal didn't automatically use the money on my balance.)
     
  5. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    The e-mail you received is a scam. Nothing is going to happen to your PayPal account if you ignore it. Before answering any such e-mail or clicking on a link in one, go to the home page of the company that allegedly sent it and call them or forward the message to a genuine customer support e-mail address. I've received similar bogus e-mails purportedly from Citibank (with whom I do business) and US Bank (with whom I don't.) Those sites had links on their home pages about the scam messages - I didn't even have to go looking. PayPal supplies a link to a similar page

    As always, check the invaluable Snopes.com Urban Legends site when something questionable turns up in your in box, whether fishy news story, odd ball chain letter or possible scam.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  6. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    If I have a balance in my Paypal account, and then use Paypal to pay for something, Paypal does scoop up the funds in my balance and then charges the rest on my credit card. Perhaps there's a setting in your user profile to tell Paypal to use any balance in your account before charging for the rest of the amount in a payment situation.
     
  7. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    Ok, here's the thing:

    paypal will let you have a non-verified account, in which you can have a smaller amount of funds available and can accept some (but not all) transactions, as credit card companies won't send money to you if they don't verify you account. Don't follow any email though, go straight to their website (http://www.paypal.com/) login, and check to see if "Verified" is next to your account, if it is, forget the email.

    The point of verification is a matter of law rather then scam. Your bank account information provides paypal a means to offer those who buy & sell from you the opportunity to get "protective services" In other words.. if you ship someone something that is a POS, and they can prove it, paypal can hit you back for a refund, and the same vice versa. It also means that if you spend more then the amount in your paypal account (like using a gas station pump that only charges $1 until the process is completed, which can leave your paypal card in the negative) it dips into your checkbook and makes up the difference.

    All of this is explained here:

    http://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr...on-faq-outside


    In other words, it's a way of assuring a buyer that you really are who you say that you are, and in case of fraud, Paypal can at least make sure you are who you are so they can call the right authorities where you live [​IMG]
     
  8. Mark_vdH

    Mark_vdH Screenwriter

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    Thanks for that, Patrick.

    However, I checked my profile and it does say that "PayPal will always use the balance in your account first", although I know it didn't. Strange. Perhaps the paid amount must stay available for a little while, because of a possible transaction reversal or something like that?
     
  9. alan halvorson

    alan halvorson Cinematographer

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    What sort of PAYPAL account do you have? A Personal account takes no fees, but doesn't allow you to accept credit cards and there are limits. Premier or Business accounts allow you to accept credit cards but there is a fee. The fee for a Premier account is 2.9% of the transaction, plus $.35; A business accout is slightly less. I do not recall a spending limit on non-verified Premier accounts, but if there is one, it's much higher than the average person would ever use.

    I agree with the opinion that the e-mail has the earmark of a scam. Go into your PAYPAL account through your own PAYPAL link (never, ever through one in an e-mail!) and see what's what.

    One advantage of being verified is that you can do a free electronic fund transfer anytime to or from your bank account. Otherwise, PAYPAL must cut you a check for which it will charge a fee (I think $3.00), and there will be a delay. I suggest setting up an account separate from your normal account, just for PAYPAL use, and regularly remove funds from that account so that, if worse comes to worse, PAYPAL can't touch them.

    Mark: Perhaps it is different in the Netherlands, but here when you make a payment through PAYPAL, by default PAYPAL will first use funds in your PAYPAL account, second, an EFT if you have a bank account associated with your account, and lastly, your credit card. This sequence can be overridden to use a credit card only if that is your desire.
     
  10. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    That's what I do.
     
  11. Elizabeth S

    Elizabeth S Producer

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    Without verification, there is a spending limit beyond which you can no longer send payments. (I think the limit was $2,000 at the time I got verified. )

    I opened up a separate checking account at a different bank from my main account, but PayPal would not use allow verification with that account for unstated reasons. Emailing them for clarification was just a frustrating experience of getting form responses which had nothing to do with my situation. The bank couldn't provide me with a reason either. So I opened another checking account at another bank which passed the verification process. So now I actually have 2 checking accounts linked to PayPal. One has no minimum balance requirement, so it has very little in it; the other unfortunately has a minimum balance but I try to draw out any extra above that other than what I need to pay for my seller's account.
     
  12. alan halvorson

    alan halvorson Cinematographer

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    PAYPAL does not make finding this information easy, but Elizabeth is correct - if you aren't verified, there is a lifetime $2,000 sending limit. So it looks like your e-mail was legitimate (even so, use your own link into PAYPAL!).
     
  13. Steve_Tk

    Steve_Tk Cinematographer

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    Giving Paypal your account number is no different then giving your account number to your credit card to pay your bill online.

    ...Or writing a check at the store and Joe Schmo has the whole number right there on the check for him.
     
  14. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    I also recommend a second account, but if you have given PayPay authority to draw funds, they could put you into an overdraft on your account, so be careful about that.

    I don't see a problem with becoming verified, and even PayPal's rates for credit card use are within reason (most credit cards charge at least 3% on a merchant account, but they also have many more stipulations included giving them a secured deposit). Just be cautious when receiving email, and never follow the links in them. Just log in at the main site and do your business through there.
     
  15. GordonL

    GordonL Supporting Actor

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  16. nolesrule

    nolesrule Producer

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    Every company is going to have horror stories and you'll see website like that. But the reverse isn't true. I mean, who's gonna start a site logging all the times that Paypal didn't screw up?

    I won't talk about my own positive experiences because you can't knocck on wood over the Internet.
     
  17. Bob McLaughlin

    Bob McLaughlin Screenwriter

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    Wow, 15 responses! You guys are great.

    I should have clarified that I did receive this e-mail immediately after trying to buy something, so I believe it to be legit. Still I took your advice and checked out the actual paypal site (not following the links in the e-mail). I didn't realize there was a $2,000 lifetime spending limit on an unverified Personal account. That sucks that all the stuff I bought in the past few years finally approached the $2,000 mark. You'd think it would re-set after a while. Maybe I can set up a new personal account using a different e-mail address?

    If that doesn't work maybe I'll just talk to my bank about possibly setting up a small savings account that I can use for this purpose. That way at least my liability will be limited to the amount in the small account. I won't put my whole savings/checking account at risk.
     
  18. Marc_Sulinski

    Marc_Sulinski Supporting Actor

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    The problem with this is that what can often happen is that, if your account is being overdrawn, they will allow the one account to be overdrawn to the point where it drains the money out of the rest of the accounts. You should set up this other account with a different bank so that this cannot happen.
     

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