Re: protecting oneself from paypal


Howard; I didn't state clearly the type of card I used. It seems that i stupidly gave paypal both my debit and credit card numbers though probably not at the same time. You know how they are always fishing for your private info. The calculator was paid for with the Visa credit card and the DVDs came out of the debit card (which says Visa on it too). So to get this fixed; i dealt with two different Wells Fargo offices that administer two different accounts. I canceled the credit card and opened a new one with a different number. I am watching the debit account.

So anyway, after i got my money back, paypal wrote me and said, in part:
"Recently, our Account Review Team identified some unusual activity in your account. In accordance with PayPal's User Agreement access to your account will be limited." Then they commenced to fishin'. I imagine they don't phone people because they got tired of hearing what they can do to thier mothers.


DB, I'll bet a million dollars that email did NOT come from Paypal. It came from some jerk who is trying to get your personal information. NEVER click on links in those emails. Instead, forward those messages to (or for ebay solicitations) and they will shut those jerks down.


Don; That may be, which is a good reason for me to not have answered it, and i didn't. However this one came to my inbox and 95% of paypal/ebaby related garbage goes automaticaly to the junk mail folder. I seldom open any of it but this time the timing and title seemed to have something to do with the refund they were forced to give me. Sure enough; it was a typical paypal vaguely-threatening-demand for more of my personal information that they have no need or right to have. I think that paypal used to be a service. Then ebaby bought them. Now they just want to service us.

btw: Was that a convoluted first sentence or what. What tense was it in anyway? And to think: I used to teach impressionable young Bolivians to speak English. Well, to talk American anyway.


That mail was absolutely, incontrovertibly a scam email from some Windows PC infected with a virus. PayPal may be more or less predatory, but they never ask for information in those terms.

In any case, your resentment over their treatment of you led you to do the right thing. 8)



At the risk of stating the obvious, strange spelling, faulty grammar, weird tenses, and threats to shut you down are typical phishing characteristics. If you have any doubts about your account, type "" yourself, login and check your status. No bank would ever ask for your details in an e-mail. I would be doubtful about a similar request on the phone - even if they say that they are "Barclays Bank", don't give them your login details or your pin. There is a good tutorial about all this on eBay itself. Another giveaway (but not necessarily always the case), is that they send the same message to millions of people: "dear PayPal user" rather than "dear pierre_12_xx".


I agree with Don and the others - you just happened to get a phishing expedition at a coincidental time.

You can verify (and marginally amuse yourself) that these are fake messages by mousing over the reply/go to URL (which at face value looks like it points to eBay or your bank) and seeing that it is not a real eBay (or whatever) URL. There may be an eBay-like part in the name, but the rest of the URL will be different words, and/or point to a country like Russia ( .ru at the end), or it may be just a bunch of IP address numbers - something like .


Don, Dave, et al: That may be so. It was just a string of gobbledygook, so long that the URL scrolled off the screen.

If i may go off topic on an off topic, this
feeding frenzy of the innumerates
was brought to my attention today. Why would someone pay $127.50 for a $100 gift certificate?


Bidders are no longer registered. Prob'ly just some good ole boys havin' a little fuuun.


If i may go off topic on an off topic, this feeding frenzy of the innumerates was brought to my attention today. Why would someone pay $127.50 for a $100 gift certificate?

This kind of things has became weirdly common on eBay lately:
Try to search for any cell phone or pda. I'm not talking about rare and exotic stuff, or items only available in some remote part of the world, I'm talking about perfectly ordinary and widely available devices, for example a Treo 680. Why pay 450$ for a (even if slightly) used Treo 680 which I can easily get new from the online palm store for $399? What's the deal? What am I missing?


People are getting used to using eBay, and assuming they will have the lowest prices. Plus, it's convenient to sit at your keyboard - Click buy it now, pay by PayPal, and wait for you phone to arrive.

The gift cert though - ??????????!!

Edited: 23 Feb 2007, 9:16 a.m.


I was needing a cheap, used 15" or so LCD monitor. No problemo, snag one on Ebay for $50, right? All attempts to get one on Ebay went for over $100. A brand new 19+ inch analog/digital one can be had for less than $120.


If you're talking about cellphones, people will frequently pay a lot more than they can buy them for at the Cingular Store for example, because they can buy them, and aren't locked into a contract. With GSM phones, you can typically pop the SIM card out of your Nokia for example, and into your later model Motorola, and have a working new phone with no contract BS. I've done this a few times.

Still, I've seen people paying a lot more for things than they can get them for at a store new. Who knows why.

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