My neighbour is an avid eBayer, well several of them are! They all know I make my living selling on eBay so they come to me whenever they need help.
“I can’t access my PayPal account” is the current problem and naturally my neighbour is worried that his account might have been hijacked. The problem is further exacerbated by the fact his old bank card has expired and as per advice from all banks was cut up and disposed of. His new card has a different 16 digit number and so he’s unable to use that for verification that he’s the account owner. The other option, the secret questions, has also proved troublesome – the answers aren’t accepted. Possibly he did a typo when entering the answers, but either way he’s not able to retrieve his account.
Earlier we phoned PayPal, and I was full of confidence assuring him that it would be a simple matter to recitfy. Not so!
Firstly the PayPal automated answering system wants to know the last four digits of the card number registered to your account (we still won’t ever know that now). It’s nigh on impossible to get through to a human without entering that information but eventually we managed it by inputting a totally fictitious number 😯 Then the problems really started.
The advice given was simply to open a new PayPal account using a different email address. I was astounded at that advice – everyone knows (or should know!) that you’re only allowed one PayPal personal account and one premier or business account. Advising a user who is worrying that their account may be hijacked to simply open a new account just doesn’t make sense. He wants to know that no one is using his original account and have it restored to him as quickly as possible.
Eventually we were advised to fax a covering letter along with a photo ID and household bill with proof of address. We’ll get that done, but how long it’ll then take to recover his PayPal account is anyone’s guess. In the mean time he’s got outstanding eBay purchases with sellers chomping at the bit for payment, and he’s worried someone else might be accessing his account.
Hopefully it’s simply a case of incorrect passwords, but a cautionary note for other PayPal users: Keep a record of the bank cards registered on your account and answers to your secret questions (no matter how sure you are that you know what they are). One day you might need them to regain access to your account!