- Posted May 15, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Women and the economy
Paypal honors hacker over bank member
My name is Adrienne Haltom and I live in Covina, CA. I'm 30 years old and am a self employed graphic artist. Much of my income comes from several sources and a decent chunk via Paypal. I have had my Paypal account for nearly 6 years. On April 29th I logged into my online account at Paypal and was shocked to see only $28 in my account. Immediately I sifted through the transactions to see where approximately $170 disappeared, and sure enough there were three transactions made which I know 100% I never authorized. One was at Autozone in Long Beach, CA, one for Sears in a completely different state, and the third from Vons in Lakewood, CA. As I'm sure anyone would do I immediately called my debit card services to report the activity but strangely Paypal does not have a 24 hour customer support for fraud activity. With over a million accounts, Paypal does not see the necessity to have a representative, not even one there 24 hours for reporting fraudulent activity. There was absolutely nothing I could do, I had to wait until 8am the next day to get a hold of someone to stop the activity. Imagine how many transactions a hacker could make in that time period. I was pretty angry about that but was more concerned about the transactions so that is what I focused on when talking to a respresentative. The representative assured me that they would take care of the fraud. He reimbursed my account, closed the card out and reissued me a new card.
On May 15th 2012 I received an email from John a rep for Paypal stating that they could not honor my dispute for two of the charges due to their findings that the charges follow my pattern of spending. I found this as an outrage considering I have never purchased anything from Autozone, never purchased anything from Long Beach, never purchased anything from Lakewood. This leaves a more important question we have to ask ourselves. If Paypal is basing their decision on spending patterns instead of solid proof (such as receipts, signatures, shipping destinations etc)...then that would mean that so long as a hacker makes a purchase near the area you live, or at a franchised institution, they will get away with it. And they have in my case. I am forced to pay for two transactions I never made. So how safe is your money with Paypal? Are we really protected against fraud with Paypal at all? Why doesn't this multi million dollar company have at least one rep on stand by 24 hours for fraudulent card activity? How can someone use my debit card to make three transactions when the card was in my possesion the entire time? And whoever did make those purchases, there must be a receipt of some source with a signature since it was used as a credit card...and why hasn't Paypal looked at the receipt? What exactly DID Paypal look at to determine my dispute was not valid? These are questions we need to ask ourselves and more importantly that Paypal needs to answer. At then end of the day, Paypal is forcing me to pay for a hackers purchases...now that doesn't seem like much protection at all.