PayPal is Rubbish!

PayPal? is rubbish. Why? Well, they seem to have a wierd idea about security and customer service.

I recently bought something on eBay (probably about the third time in my life I've used eBay). As is the way, I had to use PayPal?, and had to register an account with them to do so (because there's no way to just make a payment, you have to hand over all your details first). Here's where the trouble started...

Around two or three years ago, I used eBay in the US to buy something, and had to register a PayPal? account to do so. Since I didn't need that account again, I never accepted the ever-changing terms and conditions, nor did I ever log in, or use the account again.

Now, many years later, I can't register an account with the same email address because it's been used before. I can't log in to the old account because it's been permanently locked. I can't close the account because I can't log into it.

Seeing as all I really want to do is pay some eBay person, I register using my work email address. I then try using my credit card. I have no idea where, but my credit card is in use in another account (presumably the locked one). Thus, I can't use my credit card, or my email address with PayPal?.

Naturally, I think this is a bit stupid, so I email PayPal? customer service. Here's how it went...

Form Message

customer subject: How do I close/remove my locked account?

customer message: Additional Information:

Dear PayPal?,

How do I close an old paypal account? I once created an account becuase there was no way to make a one-off payment. That account is now "permanantly locked with an account balance of $0". The problem is that I cannot use my email address to make any further one-off payments, or indeed to create a new account. Further, I can't use my credit card in a new account because it's stuck in that old one (I presume it's that one, at least).


....Ralph Bolton

PS. You have a significant security flaw in your "secure payments" system. This flaw has been well acknowledged by banks and other financial institutions, and has a trivial solution. The form that collects credit card details allows the browser to remember previously entered details. Thus, anyone using my computer could easily enter my

credit card number, and even the security code without any need to consult the actual card. You may like to fix this as soon as possible!'

I then received a response, which - get this - is marked with a copyright notice. As such, I can't quote it all, so I'll do my best to paraphrase as representitively as possible...

Thank you for contacting PayPal?.

PayPal? takes security very seriously. Your account has been permanently locked with a $0.00 GBP balance. All information to do with the account is also locked and can't be used elsewhere in PayPal? (so you can't register a new account with it).

This is all for security, sorry for the inconvenience.

Thank you for your time.



PayPal? Resolution Services

PayPal?, an eBay Company

You will note, this doesn't exactly answer my question, help me solve my problem or even acknowledge the security issue I flagged up. So I decided to dig a little further:

So does this mean that this email address can never be used to perform any paypal activity, ever ever again?

If so, this makes it very difficult for me to use paypal. For example, if I want to make a one-off payment, I have to register a new email address, obtain a new credit card, register with paypal and then make the payment (and then close the paypal account so that it does not timeout leaving me with yet another unusable address/card). Clearly, I'm not likely to do this, meaning that for all intents and purposes, I can't use paypal, ever, ever again.

Surely this can't be a good way to operate a service, can it?


...Ralph Bolton

PS. Any comment about the security issue I noticed on the site which I notified you about in my original message?

Which prompted this response (again, paraphrased to avoid copyright issues):

Subject: Re: Re: Signing Up

We've taken the time to clarify the user agreement to make it easier for you to understand. The UA constitutes a contract between you and us, and we want to make sure you understand your legal rights and obligations.

- The UA is a contract designed to protect you and the integrity of the PayPal? service

- The Privacy Policy outlines how we may use your details, for example with partners

- Whilst this is the UA we're all bound to, we can change it at any time and will give you 30 days notice of this.



PayPal?, an eBay Company

So again, nothing to do with anything. It's looking a lot like I can't really use PayPal? any more (since I'm not getting a new credit card, or even registering a new email address).

Oh, and in case you didn't get it - there's an obvious security flaw in the PayPal? secure online payment service that they haven't acknowledged, or look like they want to know about.

Update: It gets better - PayPal? have asked me to feedback on how their person did when replying to my emails! Ha ha!

Submitted by coofercat on Mon, 2005-07-04 08:12


Security flaw

So, in practice you mean that, if you use PayPal on your laptop and said laptop gets stolen (ok, I know, it never happens but...) then the crooks can also empty your credit card? This is bad! Bad PayPal, bad!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Wed, 2005-07-06 15:35.
Forwarned is forarmed

This was most salutary. Here was I about to try and register with PayPal in order to sell an item, almost certainly a one-off.

Did I detect a possible way of avoiding your problem which I am sure would cause me to have a heart attack. Can you close an account having used it to make a payment?

Regards -- PP

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 2005-08-15 12:01.
Paypal is no "pal"

(:mad:) I've just fallen foul of this.I registered with paypal, bought something and thought I'd never use it again and cannot remember what details I gave them.I have sold something on ebay and cannot claim the payment because my account is locked.5 emails and 2 long phone calls later and no further forward.They stink.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 2005-08-22 20:44.
Re: Forwarned is forarmed

Yes, it is possible to close an account you have used for a payment. As best as I can tell, the account is erased from the PayPal Evil Archive, but for all I know, they hang on to it all "just in case".

The security issue still remains though - any information you type into the PayPal website is retained by your browser's "form filling" feature. Thus, if your machine is used by someone else, they could simply re-fill any forms with the info stored by your browser.

PayPal need to switch off the browser feature - this is easily possible, banks and such people use it routinely. Given that PayPal is regulated by the FSA in the UK, one would assume they're broadly obliged to do the same.

Submitted by coofercat on Mon, 2005-08-15 22:19.
Joke...this is another of internets crappy 'secure' webbos

paypal is a joke...transfering money takes a week, they give you sod all details of the person you are doing business with....If i knew how annoying it was to use the damn thing i would have not bothered in the 1st should have compensation for using this shitty service

Submitted by deathtopaypal (not verified) on Tue, 2008-06-10 19:15.
Yep,I tried to claim money

Yep,I tried to claim money back for a fake ipod, they give you 10daysto provide documentation, tell you how to e-mail it using the web site - but THE DIRECTIONS ARE WRONG. Took two days to get a response on alternative routes then was told,despite meeting the requirements the documents were not valid (letter direct from Apple saying the ipod was fake) and I had two remaining days to rectify it or the claim would be dismissed - Pathetic.Won't be using them again.Oh,get this, when I suggested I would have been better off just using my credit card with it's purchaser protection,they agreed!!!!!!!

Submitted by FedUpWithpayPAL!!!!! (not verified) on Sat, 2008-07-19 00:24.
They are holding £300 - ($550 of my money!)

Hi guys,

It seems I have exactly the same problem!

2 Years ago my eBay and Paypal account details were used fraudulenty. After speaking to the both it was decided better to close the paypal account. I did this.

Recently I listed 20 items and sold them. I quickly set up paypal and tried to accept the payments which I had been notified of by email. However, I cannot register the address as it has already been used.

The system does not tell you this instead I found out after calling eBay 6 times - all that happens when you press confirm is that no email arrives!

I have sent me first letter regarding legal action - I feel they are money laundering!

It seems so trivial... I just want my money!

Does anyone else have any advice or have sorted this problem?

Many thanks,


Submitted by Luke Murray (not verified) on Sun, 2008-10-12 19:39.
RE:They are holding £300 - ($550 of my money!)you were lucky

There isn't much really you can do from a legal point of view unless that has changed in the last year; I sold a laptop on ebay, had to use paypal to take payment, then my account was locked so i could not remove the funds, call paypal after 4 emails taking me in circles, and their assistance number is buried in their website pages, they told me i had to send the laptop and send them confirmation that i had sent it before they were prepared to release the funds, i thought ok and sent the laptop and forwarded them the UPS tracking number and faxed in my ID documentation with the postal receipt; the account was unlocked after a further week and 6 phonecalls (call centre was only open during US californian time). It takes several days for the funds to be released to your account, the day before they were due to be deposited i look in my paypal account and the funds are gone! 2800 pounds for a ASUS gaming laptop; All record of the funds being there are gone aswell, I call paypal frantic to find out that the customer called and said his account was hacked so they returned the funds, however his ebay account has not been locked and he is still buying selling, i call UPS to see if i can stop delievery however the computer was delivered 4 days ago; they sent me signed confirmation.

To this day I have not had the funds returned and give a huge warning for people to stay clear of paypal and any affiliated company.



Submitted by David Sky (not verified) on Sat, 2009-04-25 10:02.
Stupid paypal and thier efusal to assist.

Some years ago I opened a paypal account and used the email address that was provided by Beeb.
They have discontinued this service and now I cannot open the paypal account to close it.
paypal helpWHERE?

Please note that I refuse to use caps on the name of paypal.

The reson I wish to close it is because the Bank was my estranged partner's and if I sold would I get the money? What a stupid question.

Submitted by Anonymous Coward (not verified) on Thu, 2009-03-12 17:15.
payPal customer service ?? - Joke!

Recently sold a few bits on Ebay - as new user had to set up PayPal account. OK so far. Bit of cash in my account - tried to withdraw - enered details of bank etc. Then told this account already had a paypal shit account assigned.! Over 2 years ago I tried out paypal shit thinking of setting up a web site. Passed the tests OK but never followed it up. Time moved on - I changed home and MOST Important my email from AOL to BT. OK - so I need to remove the 'old' account - balance zero. Remembered email address but not password - remember we told never write down your p/word. Tried byon line help, phone & email to reset old password. - All the stupid uncaring idiot shit heads at paypal do is send a reset email to a long defunct email address. They do not listen they do not care and they do not understand. In a rage I try to close paypal account and suggest they go forth & multiply. OOps there are funds in the account which i must withdraw first - You bloody idiots if I could withdraw the funds I wouldn't be so p*****d off. I fire off angry emails - get response to ring them - my advice is 'less you got days to waste be prepared. The guy on 'phone sends me straight to reset password on line which sends an email to the long dead address. I,m dizzy, round & round in PayPal lunatic unhelpful circles. My advice don't go anywhere near them - on security I set 2 'security, questions& when trying to resolve this heap of paypal excrement both questions had the answers shown in a drop down!!!

Submitted by A Win. (not verified) on Tue, 2010-07-27 21:33.
paypal will one way or another get u robbed

they got me robbed £900 a few months ago and they just got me £21 robbed two days ago. i was a seller and i was paid £900 for an item i sold and paypal conformed as money was received and i can go a head and hand the item to the buyer. 2 hours later, they took the money of my account and gave to the to someone i do not even know. they said it was because it was claimed an authorised transaction. two days ago a bought an item which for £175 which turned out to be faulty and not as described and i wanted to return the item to the seller. paypal will not give me my money back unless i provided them tracking delivery number which costed me £21 return delivery. i asked paypal since the item was faulty and it was not my fault, which should i pay £21 to return the item to the seller? they said it is not real fair but that is the way it is. either u lose £175 or £21. customer service agents are very rude. not knowing what they are talking about. you ask them something, they talk about something else that is irrelevant to your problem. generally. if you do not meet any problem, it is fine. but when you need paypals help and you need to contact them, they are your worst night mare. they will laugh at you as if they aim to get you lose money.

Submitted by daniel (not verified) on Fri, 2010-08-20 15:03.
stupid paypal

My mom let me use her bank account (maybe that was a silly decision) to use ebay about 5 years ago wheni didnt have my own acct. Since then i've changed email address several times (as you do when your a bored teenager) cant for the life of me remember what email address i used let alone the password.
Trying to set my mom up an ebay account to sell some items, obvi paypal best choice for payments as anything more than point and click and she gets all confused. Anywho, it wont link her bank account because its already linked to another paypal account.
Paypal cant help, they found the account and sent a password reset email to that accts email address- but i dont know what email address it was! paypal cant tell me what email address it was for security reasons!
Mom cant change her bank details as its her only acct and is a professional one- she cant just open a new bank account for various reasons (time restraints being one of them). she cant use my account as im in Australia.
Wish there was a way to remove the bank account-paypal link, maybe through your bank? so your bank can confirm that the bank account will no longer be linked to the long forgotten paypal account. That way your bank account is free to be attatched to a new paypal account, dont the idiots at paypal understand that u cant just create a new bank account that easily? espcially if its a business one!

Submitted by miss faerie (not verified) on Tue, 2010-10-05 16:13.
Dude you CAN post the full

Dude you CAN post the full message from PAYPAL if it's addressed to YOU then it's NOT copyright, beside what are they going ot do..SERIOUSLY waste a shedload of money trying to sue a (no disrespect meant) nobody?

Check your understanding of the copyright laws, at the moment they seem to be lacking in a few areas.

Submitted by Anonymous Hero (not verified) on Sat, 2010-11-20 21:36.