Author Topic: My Own Personal Sob Story  (Read 16858 times)

gdog

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« on: May 26, 2005, 11:49:41 pm »
I've got 100% positive feedback on eBay as a buyer (haven't sold anythng yet). Feedback score is 59 on 81 purchases. But Paypal won't confirm my shipping address because I don't trust them ( or anyone else for that matter), enough to send them a digital picture of my driver's license.

And I don't trust anyone (ie the Internet), to put my credit card number or other personal info out there in order to complete automated transactions. Haven't been burned  yet but did have to change my CC number when geeks.net got hacked a couple of years back.

So here's my sob story. I'd like to order an extra EA-B11 battery, and EA-72 AC Adapter, an external charger and a Pentopia stylus. But given that Sharp doesn't sell the C3K and C1K's over here in the States, there isn't a plethora of places where I can order those items, and of the ones that do ell them they all want enough info to build a financial clone of me, or they want to only ship to a confirmed Paypal address.  The former I won't allow, the second I can't provide because paypal refuses to consider the fact that there are other ways of confirming additional addresses, but won't because would have to change their way of doing things and actually start communicating with the company that owns them, eBay.

So what's a geek to do? I'm not going to compromise my principles for a battery, but then again I can't afford to travel to Tokyo to pay cash for one either. Dynamism is about the only way that offers a live transaction with just my credit card, but they are very expensive. Trisoft wants too much personal info, Streamline does too though they will take Paypal but only with a confirmed address. I was told they would take money orders or cashiers checks but so far I've not heard back. And the one place on eBay will accept my order with a promise to ship my items within a month. Very nice of them!

Does anyone know of a source for accessories that is neither too expensive, nor involves playing Russion Roullette with one's personal info?

Well there you have it. My own little sob story. If I'm approached by Hollywood to do  human interest story you can bet that one of my demands will be a supply of accessories that I don't have to sign for ;o) Short of that I guess I'm up the proverbial digital stream without a virtual paddle.

Regards, from poor little me,

gdog
« Last Edit: May 26, 2005, 11:50:39 pm by gdog »
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TRIsoft

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« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2005, 03:48:26 am »
Quote
...Trisoft wants too much personal info...   
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=81716\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]
gdog,

HELP ! Could you please give us a hint what you mean ?
Without an address, we can't ship.
Without an email addy we can't communicate.
Without a phone number we can't send international
packages.
And we don't ask for more  

Also we and Streamline will be happy to help everyone
in special cases via email (there're _real_ people behind
the webpages and shop   ).
OK, mailing a question means to reveal your email addy,
but this shouldn't be a real problem.

We can't improve services if you don't tell us what to do
better.

///TRIsoft

Marc Stephan

emjaybee

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« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2005, 09:08:06 am »
When I first started my PayPal account and I wanted to verify my address they mailed me a letter with a URL and code to enter to verify.  This was a few years back so they may have changed the process since Ebay took over.  I've had to move since then and it was a breeze as long as the credit card on file had the same mailing address.

I understand that identity theft is a big issue these days, but you have to trust someone if you want to get anything done.  I chose PayPal because I only use one credit card on the net and can check the website to see if any fraudulant charges were made.  Most credit card companies even call if big purchases were made just to verify it was you who made them.  I've been buying and selling on Ebay for a few years now and I don't like shipping to unverified addresses because PayPal doesn't protect me if someone claims I shafted them.

How come you only hear about when websites get compromised?  Because it doesn't happen often enough so it's considered news.  Facts are, you're safer dealing with online purchases than offline purchases.  People go to restaurants and pay with credit cards everyday.  Just hand it to the waiter/waitress and they don't think anything of it as the server walks out of site to pay the bill (and write down the credit card info since they only make $2.00/hr plus tips).  After their meal they go to almost any retailer and buy whatever.  Receipt prints out, you sign the merchant copy and you get the customer copy which has your credit info XXXX out.  To bad the cashier making minimum wage has the receipt that has your credit card information without the XXXX on it.

This type of hypocracy upsets me considering the websites are doing more to prevent fraud because they know people are going to target them saying they're not safe.  What people need to do is look at the people handling their offline transactions.

What's a geek to do?  Take off the tinfoil hat and get educated about the real problems of the system.

Here's a little light reading:

http://www.hotelmarketing.com/index.php/co..._offline_world/
http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2005...ft_offline.html
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gdog

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« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2005, 01:03:10 pm »
Quote
Quote
...Trisoft wants too much personal info...   
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=81716\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]
gdog,

HELP ! Could you please give us a hint what you mean ?
Without an address, we can't ship.
Without an email addy we can't communicate.
Without a phone number we can't send international
packages.
And we don't ask for more  

Also we and Streamline will be happy to help everyone
in special cases via email (there're _real_ people behind
the webpages and shop   ).
OK, mailing a question means to reveal your email addy,
but this shouldn't be a real problem.

We can't improve services if you don't tell us what to do
better.

///TRIsoft

Marc Stephan
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=81748\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

Please do not take this personally, or think that I am targeting any company in particular. I assure you that is not my intention.

I will not put my credit card (CC), number out on the internet. I don't like putting my name, sex, birthday, address or anything else that can be collected and used to "build" a comprehensive profile of who I am. And while I fully understand that when I tell the person on the other end of the phone my CC number that it is going into the same computer it does were I to just enter it myself using an automated system, I also have the opportunity to get a name and an order number that might help to track any bad things that might occur as a result of my order being taken and information provided. And in fact that very thing happened to me when some folks who were later tracked to Russia, managed to hack into a business's database that entered the info by hand. The hackers stole mine and many others CC numbers. So I had to cancel my CC, thankfully before they had a chance to use it. And so, I try to be very selective, and believe that the bad guys would find it harder to be bad if more of us were also more careful and less cavalier about that we put out there for anyone to read.

Bottom line is that if a company wants my business then they'll offer me the opportunity to speak to a live person in order to place and trace my order. If not, that's their right and choice, but I'll make the choice and exercise my right to just  play in someone else's sandbox.

Best Regards,

gdog
« Last Edit: May 27, 2005, 01:05:40 pm by gdog »
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w14

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« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2005, 01:45:32 pm »
gdog,

Things may have changed in the last year or so, but the last time I looked into this, it was face to face transactions that were by far the largest share of credit card fraud out there - cards being double swiped, or photographed with a digital camera, plus photocopies of the receipts and so on. These kind of things typically happen at petrol stations or restaurants.

I think its better to be a bit more pragmatic about the risks. Read the terms and conditions from your credit card company. In the UK for example, and this also applies with some UK lenders when you are purchasing items abroad*, there is a rule called "equal liability" which allows you to claim from the bank/lender if:

- the goods or services you bought are unsatisfactory
- the trader has broken the contract (e.g., by not sending you the goods) or
- if the trader has misrepresented or misdescribed the goods or services to you.

"Equal liability" here means that the credit card company is eqully liable for the good outcome from any transaction as is the shop/restaurant etc.

Also, in the event your credit card is stolen in the UK, your maximum liability is £50, so long as you inform your credit card of the loss immediately. (In the US, I believe, the liability is $50)

In my case, I can check my accounts online, and I check my credit card statement daily.

So I think the risks of using credit cards on the Internet are severely overblown. Yes, it is damned inconvenient when some incompetent company has their servers hacked and they lose personal data. Companies that store that kind of data on a public facing server should be shut down.

But it seems clear that the greater risks are in normal day to day use of a credit card, not in the occasional online purchase you might make.

Mike.


* This issue is being argued in court at present.
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gdog

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« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2005, 01:58:29 pm »
Quote
When I first started my PayPal account and I wanted to verify my address they mailed me a letter with a URL and code to enter to verify.  This was a few years back so they may have changed the process since Ebay took over.  I've had to move since then and it was a breeze as long as the credit card on file had the same mailing address.

I understand that identity theft is a big issue these days, but you have to trust someone if you want to get anything done.  I chose PayPal because I only use one credit card on the net and can check the website to see if any fraudulant charges were made.  Most credit card companies even call if big purchases were made just to verify it was you who made them.  I've been buying and selling on Ebay for a few years now and I don't like shipping to unverified addresses because PayPal doesn't protect me if someone claims I shafted them.

emjaybee,
Things have not changed from that. However while paypal has verified my account by talking to my bank and depositing two small amounts of money into my acount, which I then reported back to them, allowing them to know that I at least have access to the account to which they then verified, the confirmation process of an address is done much differently. The rules as they currently exist are that:

1. I have to be a member in good standing with at least 10 transactions, and my membership has to be at least 90 days old.
2. Upon logging into my account and verifying that those points are true they send me a secret code to my alternate address.
3. I log into my account and enter that secret code.
4. Then they require me to send them a picture ID with my address on it, along with two recent utilty bills that were sent to that same address.

If I do that they are happy and will confirm that alternate address. One thing of note. I have all of my medical and financial correspondence sent to a PO box. It does no good to confirm a po box  because some carriers, such as UPS, refuse to ship to PO Boxes.

I also suggested that they could just ask my bank for the second address because it has both. And since eBay owns Paypal, the same information could be obtained from them as well. You just don't conduct nearly 100 transactions involving thousands of dollars of merchandise, with nobody complaining if something is amiss. You don't achieve 100% feedback worth 1000s of dollars, either buying or selling if your having thing shipped to the wrong address. EBay can tell Paypal that, just as my Bank can tell Paypal that my second address is legit, it Paypal cared to just ask, don't you think?

You mentioned identity theft. If I fax Paypal a picture of my driver's license, and they get hacked (and they will, if it hasn't happened already despite their claims to the contrary), then the bad guys would have everything they need at that point to make my life a living hell.

Quote
How come you only hear about when websites get compromised?  Because it doesn't happen often enough so it's considered news.  Facts are, you're safer dealing with online purchases than offline purchases.  People go to restaurants and pay with credit cards everyday.  Just hand it to the waiter/waitress and they don't think anything of it as the server walks out of site to pay the bill (and write down the credit card info since they only make $2.00/hr plus tips).  After their meal they go to almost any retailer and buy whatever.  Receipt prints out, you sign the merchant copy and you get the customer copy which has your credit info XXXX out.  To bad the cashier making minimum wage has the receipt that has your credit card information without the XXXX on it.

I don't pay for meals or other things which require me to be separated from my CC. And I don't use my CC for much anyway, and never use a debit card either. I pay with cash whenever possible.

Quote
This type of hypocracy upsets me considering the websites are doing more to prevent fraud because they know people are going to target them saying they're not safe.  What people need to do is look at the people handling their offline transactions.

What's a geek to do?  Take off the tinfoil hat and get educated about the real problems of the system.

Seems like it's hard to state your opinion on the web without someone seeing it as either a personal attack, or an opportunity to mount one.
I'm not a hyprocrite. And while I admit to being a geek, I do not and never have worn a tinfoil hat. (Though I might if I thought it would make me wifi work better ;o))
And you don't hear about financial crimes, or crimes against financial institutions very often because those victimized go to great lengths to keep such things quiet. It's very bad for business, don't you know.

Quote
Here's a little light reading:

http://www.hotelmarketing.com/index.php/co..._offline_world/
http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2005...ft_offline.html
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=81784\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

I'll take a look at your articles, but you might want to take the blinders off long enough to take note of the fact that identify theft takes on many forms, and is used in many ways. The perpretrators after all are in it for the biggest bang for your buck. They don't care if that is on-line or off-line, so long as it's your name on the signature line. In the meantime I'll continue being as careful as I can and hope for the best. And if there is any truth to safety in numbers, maybe the sharks will eat the other little fishes before me, cause I'm not going to be one of those on the leading edge of the school (technology), where the sharks will be looking for the easiy pickings, lazy SOBs that they (the bad guys) are.

Best Regards,

gdog
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tombraider

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« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2005, 04:27:21 pm »
gdog:

JMHO,  but I think you are being paranoid.  Life is full of small risks.  

I think internet transactions are very safe.  
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nilch

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« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2005, 04:47:54 pm »
I have friend who after tearing off the receipts from the teller machines (of a bank) dumps one half into a bin on 46th street (say) and the opther half 3-4 block away and never in the same bin (he does the same for all such financial papers which he tears off into 4 halves sometimes).

Of course his logic is that that with a little bit of patience, someone can re-construct the entile paper by putting  them together if its in the same bin and get the sensitive data back together in one piece. I don't think he would be satisfied with a paper sheredder either.

In the olden days (and back home in India when Creditcards were not that popular), people had the same paranoia about holding on to their wallets, because while travelling on a crammed bus or tram,  someone could nick your wallet (happend to me too), and then we thought with CC's that problem was solved - no more cash to steal.

Well, goes to show risks are there always (maybe even in the days of bartering before cash as a tool was created). We just got to balance it out with the convenience that such tools provide.
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« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2005, 10:51:58 pm »
Please don't take my post personally, as there are many people that feel the way you do.  As tombraider said, life is full of small risks.  The thing is, most credit card companies don't hold you liable for fraudulant charges so it's not even a risk.  While it is a small hassle to get a new card (it's happened to me once) or call your credit card company because you're on their website and someone made a charge you didn't authorize, the conveinence of shopping online clearly outweighs the small hassle.

As far as the PayPal confirmation, you describe Alternative Address Confirmation.  There are two other ways to confirm your address with PayPal, according to their Help section:

1 When you add a credit card to your PayPal account, the address on file with your credit card company becomes confirmed.
2 Once you apply for PayPal Buyer Credit and are approved, the address used on your application will be confirmed on your PayPal account.

I doubt you'll want to do Buyer Credit anytime soon, so that eliminates option 2.  And option 1 has the dreaded credit card in it.  It was great when I moved last month I went to my credit card's website and changed to my new mailing address.  24 hours later I went to PayPal and changed to my new mailing address and it was confirmed.  No muss no fuss.

Maybe in the end there's no tinfoil hat and no blinders.  It's all about how much risk you're willing to take and live with the consequences.  You have your principles which may give you some difficulty ordering items sometimes, and I'm a little more liberal which allows me to buy what I want on the Internet but may present an identity theft issue down the road.
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« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2005, 08:15:19 am »
gdog,

PM me if you want to discuss me going shopping for you.

I'm about to buy some stuff on http://www.wolf.ne.jp/syuhen/zaurus.html, so if you can get what you want there and are willing to pay the postage to ship it stateside, I can get your stuff too.

If you can find a cheaper place online or physical shop in Osaka area I'll happily go there instead.

I have US$ paypal account with a verified address (actually my wife does but it's my credit card ) so you won't get hit with any other charges.

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gdog

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« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2005, 12:19:27 pm »
Quote
gdog:

JMHO,  but I think you are being paranoid.  Life is full of small risks. 

I think internet transactions are very safe.   
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=81853\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]
tombraider there are good identifty thieves and very good identity thieves out there. The very good ones can create a mess for you that will take years to fix. Years in which thousands of your dollars will be spent on lawyer fees, and countless hours of frustration will be experienced while you are trying to clear your good name. Be careful out there. I may be paranoid, but there are countless cases of real people being victimized that have brought me to this point. For some reason there are bad people out there that have not figured out they could spend much less time earning an honest living than it takes them to steal someone else's.

Best regards,

gdog
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gdog

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« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2005, 12:34:37 pm »
Quote
Please don't take my post personally, as there are many people that feel the way you do.  ...


Thanks for saying that. I was not sure if you were "on the attack" or not. My big problem lies with the fact that I won't let my Bank ship me even one statement to my physical address. Paypal really needs to examine their policy on confirming addresses.  There are at least two other ways of doing so that are just as secure, and do not put the consumer's information at risk. In my opinion they just don't want to add the cost incurred by changing their process and therefore they choose to let the consumer pay the price (it is after all free to pay with paypal so long as you aren't victimized in the process of following their policies). They say they'll listen to customers' suggestions but to this point mine have fallen on deaf ears. And even though I've worked in IT for nearly 15 years for a company much larger than ebay and paypal combined, where security is even more important, they don't seem to take much stock in my opinions on how they can make their process easier, cheaper and much more secure).  I'm not bragging here. I try very hard to be humble. There  are just  better ways to do what they are doing.

Best Regards,

gdog
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gdog

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« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2005, 12:40:49 pm »
Quote
gdog,

PM me if you want to discuss me going shopping for you.

I'm about to buy some stuff on http://www.wolf.ne.jp/syuhen/zaurus.html, so if you can get what you want there and are willing to pay the postage to ship it stateside, I can get your stuff too.

If you can find a cheaper place online or physical shop in Osaka area I'll happily go there instead.

I have US$ paypal account with a verified address (actually my wife does but it's my credit card ) so you won't get hit with any other charges.

Stu
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=81902\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

Stubear,
That's one of the nicest and most generous offers anyone who barely knows me has ever offered. Thank you very much. I believe I have been able to get another company to let me use my paypal account to order the items I need. I should know by tomorrow (or Tuesday given the Holiday),  if they've gotten my order and are processing it. Hope so because I really woulld like to have an extra battery and ac adapter. I should have ordered the external charger too, but I'll do that with them if this order works out alright.

Thank you again, very, very much!

Best Regards,

gdog
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« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2005, 06:52:40 pm »
I have no worries at all shopping online, mostly because AmEx has great protection policies for online fraud.  My suggestion is to just find a credit card that offers great protection and use just that one for your online shopping.

With that, I'm going to go shopping for a bubble to live in
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« Reply #14 on: May 31, 2005, 10:41:01 am »
Quote
I have no worries at all shopping online, mostly because AmEx has great protection policies for online fraud.  My suggestion is to just find a credit card that offers great protection and use just that one for your online shopping.

With that, I'm going to go shopping for a bubble to live in
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=82064\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

Be sure to have your bank statements, new checks, medical bills and Social Security statements and such  sent to the mail box right at the end of the driveway leading to your bubble. It sounds to me like you might alreadly be living in your own little bubble if you haven't heard enough of what's going on around you to make you more aware that your credit card's "all but fifty dollar" protection isn't going to keep you safe from some big-time problems. But hey, you're likely young, don't have a care in the world, and know that you're way ahead of those out to take advantage of you.

By far the biggest problem with identity theft is that the thieves do not take your card and start ringing up charges on it. Not enough bang for your buck there, and only the small time crooks resort to that sort of thing. The good ones gather as much of your personal info as they can in order to manufacture new ID's for you, such as fake driver's licenses (with your name and their picture),  birth certificates, and sometimes SS cards in order to open up as many credit accounts as they can in your name, and sometimes even buy houses or boats (which are then resold very quickly). The "new" you does not live at your address and so it takes a while for the accumulation of fraudulent  debt to reach you. When it does, one day you'll receive a call or be visited by a debt collector asking when you plan to begin repaying this large debt that you owe. It will not matter that is wasn't actually the real you that signed for it, or that the signatature is not exactly like yours (who's signature looks like a carbon copy each time they write it?).  Where you now find yourself is in a position where some very bad people have opened a few dozen accounts in your name, charged somtimes tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt in your name, and you are the one being asked to pay it back. All the while they are enjoying the fruits of your new job which is clearing your name, while they merrily begin working on their next victim.

If you doubt this, google yourself. You will likely be very surprised to see how much information about yourself is readily available out there. It's only the lowest form of identity thief who resorts to dumpster diving or skimming your card number that you used when you had dinner with the wife or filled up your car last.

That's the truth of it. Believe it or not, it's your choice. But do yourself a favor and buy a shredder and use it. Keep your card covered when you insert it into the ATM and never clearly punch in your pin in such a way that someone can capture it on closed circuit tv.  Got out to google and type in idenitity theft and read some of the real life horror stories that are happening every day. Don't take my word for it....
« Last Edit: May 31, 2005, 10:58:10 am by gdog »
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