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I have had an active paypal account for a number of years, but recently they informed me that my account was now "limited". They claim they needed my help in resolving some issue, considering it had been some time since I last used it I was suspicious.
So I went to the paypal website (directly, didn't click any link provided in the e-mail) and my account was indeed limited and to resolve this they demanded I send them Photo ID or proof of residence.
I was very uncomfortable with this request and decided it would be best I close my account, which I am told I cannot do until my account is no longer limited. I looked to the paypal forums to post about this, but again, limited account so I couldn't do a thing. Eventually I found another way to close the account via the "contact us" page, but this time it demands a $1.50 charge to close the account.
So I feel I am stuck, I cannot remove my card or bank details from the account, I cannot close it without a charge or sending them personal details. The whole thing makes me feel uncomfortable, while paypal haven't got any of my money and they haven't taken any money from me, I still feel uneasy about all this. I don't think any company trusted to handle money should act in such a ridiculous manor. I didn't have this much trouble closing a bank account a couple of years ago.
Is there anything I can do short of requesting a new card from my bank? Or should I trust they won't try anything?
Already done, they were not helpful in the slightest. They were inflexible. Told me if I wanted to close the account I'd have to send them the aforementioned photo id or proof of address.
"I still feel uneasy about all this. I don't think any company trusted to handle money should act in such a ridiculous manor."
PayPal acts in this manner because it is under a legal obligation to comply with the European and UK money laundering regulations, part of which require a transaction-handling company like Paypal to verify an account holder's identity. It's not ridiculous to expect PayPal to safeguard its business status, and I fail to understand why you are uneasy when it asks for some form of proof of identity. The same proof is required by a bank when you wish to open an account - it's an everyday occurrence.
The PayPal terms and conditions state quite clearly that you can't close an account if it has "limitations, unresolved issues, or a balance".
As PayPal has said it needs your help to "resolve some issue" why don't you simply talk to them and resolve it?
Firstly, I thought said money laundering regulations are only in effect if you have exceeded or are approaching a set amount of activity on the account, which I can assure you is certainly not the case.
Secondly, the "issue" is me needing to "confirm some account information". now considering my bank, my card, my address (home and e-mail) and phone number have all been entered and already confirmed, I didn't understand what they wanted so I left things as they were, it was only later that because this "issue" was left unresolved that my account was limited.
Thirdly, I have only ever used paypal as a secure intermediary, I have never deposited or withdrawn money. I have never been asked by an online store to provide them with a copy of a utility bill or photo ID.
So I hope you can see why I find this so strange after 5 years of no issues with paypal they turn around tell me there is an issue which is non-existent and then limit my account. From my perspective that have invented a problem and then demanded a copy of my ID, is that not suspicious?
Paypal is not a person. It makes is judgements on a set of algorithms, you may have triggers some in the the past that have added up to give you a 'score' high enough to trigger an alert.
"From my perspective that have invented a problem and then demanded a copy of my ID, is that not suspicious?"
I invite you to consider why a company like PayPal would conceivably want to 'invent' a problem. Once again I say, why not contact them and resolve the problem? I really can't understand why you are so unwilling to do so.
I have already mentioned that I have contacted paypal and as I said, they were not helpful. They only parroted what my log in page told me, my account had been limited because I had not resolved an issue of an unconfirmed account detail. Account details which as I have said, have all been confirmed for 3-5 years.
Perhaps invent was the wrong word to use, but the fact remains they are claiming that a problem exists where there could not possibly be one and then demanding I send personal and sensitive information to them. This is odd behavior, whether instigated by algorithm or human being. And I don't want to send those kinds of personal details in a suspect situation. I am not so cavalier which such details as you it seems.
I just want to iterate that I have contacted paypal and voiced my concerns, they were unwilling or unable to tell me anything other than what my account page says, that I have details that need confirming and I should check my account page. Said account page only shows confirmed details and have been so for 3-5 years. A month or so later I was told my account had now been limited because the issue was not resolved and to remove the limitation I need to send photo id or proof of residence. Paypal insists that an account detail needs to be confirmed yet they couldn't tell me which specific detail needed confirming only that I should visit my account page and re-check all my details, which I have done, twice. And yet the problem still exists.
I am legitimately concerned that paypal or my account has been compromised in some way, these concerns have not been alleviated by the incompetent paypal support staff. In situations such as this, is it not prudent to be cautious?
If you are still unhappy or suspicious notwithstanding the very cogent advice you have been given here you need to get on to Trading Standards, or perhaps even the regulator.
Perhaps a few more questions require answering?.
There was a scam a few years ago with PayPal accounts and limitations, and there are a number of scams still going on in recent weeks, so it does pay to be sure and secure.
What telephone number did you use, when you made contact with PayPal, was it the 08707 307 191, because there are others you can try Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm 0870 730 7191- 0845 401 1050 - 020 8605 3000 (these are for UK accounts) and you will find these on http://www.saynoto0870.com
The 020 8605 3000 number is also for eBay and is the main switchboard telephone with options to PayPal.
I would be rather suspect if $1.50 was requested to close the account, especially if the PayPal account is in the UK.
There have been a number of recent changes within PayPal and eBay, and how these changes are coming into force, and perhaps through these changes, something might have shown on your account. I have dealt with both eBay and Paypal for many years, and at times things can get a little annoying, unless you reach 'the right person'.
I may be stirring things unnecessarily but I feel I must say something having read the comments. I am quite happy to be labelled whatever anyone wants, but that does not change the facts.
I had never felt the need to use ebay/paypal when I saw some comments about them, and I resolved never to use. I have never had an account and have never even tried to open one. I spoke to my wife after receiving an email and she said that some years ago she had tried to open an account, but it had never been accepted. So as far as we were concerned we had never had an account with either of them. And yet the email told us our 'account' had been suspended! I tried getting through to them, but not having an account was unsuccessful, so I sent an email - have not had it returned so assumed it got through - to thank them for 'suspending' our 'non-existent' account, and asking them what happens now. To date - not a word. So we are quite happy with this arrangement, especially as we have change banks at least once and maybe even twice since my wife's attempt at trying to open an account. I realise many people use them - a good friend of mine swears by them - but I do not trust them and I would suggest Poobles tells his/her bank not to make any payments to them and ignore them. There may be more emails but if nothing is done, surely nothing can get taken?
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