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Thanks for clarifying the number belongs to PayPal, but that response is insufficient.
- Why release a half-baked system that sends non-sensical texts with glaring spelling errors (e.g. "ahorized")?
- Why is there no matching notification when we login to validate the transaction?
- Why, in response to "yes" answer to the original text, are we then instructed to send a command to transfer money with no designated receiver?
- Why, when contacting PayPal support via secure email, do they not know anything about these texts?
When dealing with finances, security is extremely important. Given all the phishing and spoofing scams out there, PayPal needs to act more like a financial institution and less like a mom-and-pop diner trying out new ideas on the customers before proper testings is done. That could start with a more cautious approach to statements like "...if it's from that number, it is a legitimate message and a legitimate link." Is that always true, 100% of the time? Google "SMS spoofing," read some of the articles, and then please reconsider your statement.
When responsible organizations, like financial institutions, take an action that raises suspicions among their customers and has unintended consequences like generating inexplicable error messages, they suspend the action until proper testing can be done. Actually, responsible companies do enough testing in advance, they never go into production with a disaster like this.
PayPal is not a software publisher. Paypal is a company offering financial services. Pushing out buggy alpha code to users and asking us to live with the bugs until the next patch or service pack is released is irresponsible and undermines PayPal's brand as being a secure method of making payments.
Like TXGRunner I am seriously disturbed about the superficiality of Paypal's responses to this issue. They are making no attempt to deal with specific questions. Either their new system is defective in which case they need to acknowledge the problems and fix, or if not defective then there's some attempted scamming going on here.
Thanks for bringing these issues to our attention. I apologize that my first answer wasn't sufficient. I'm going to ensure we get your feedback passed along internally so that we can have this addressed. I appreciate you taking the time to raise these questions, and hopefully it's resolved soon.
- Ashley M
Re. my earlier messages. I emailed Paypal about the text I received stating one of my attempted payments was "suspicious" and requesting that I respond "yes" if the transaction was authorised. I pointed out that all attempts to reply "yes" simply generated a message "not delivered" and I asked them to clarify if this was an error in their system or a scamming attempt.
I received an automated reply from Paypal that was completely irrelevant. The message said I was receiving error statements because all messages are deleted after 90 days. In other words, rather than bother to read my question someone hit a button and sent a reply that has absolutely nothing to do with the questions I asked.
I will email them again and perhaps this time I'll get a human who is knowledgeable and has the good manners to send a constructive reply, but remain concerned that, apart from poor customer service, this is indicative of a flaw in their system.
Good luck BenGunn.
Whoever works in their email response group are more like automatons than human beings. Over the course of six or seven emails, they failed to read what I carefully wrote. I asked they forward my inquiry to their net defense/security group and they assumed I was reporting my account was hijacked and gave me several paragraphs on what to do improve security on my account. All their responses were non-sequiturs and clearly indicated the service agent responding either didn't read or was incapable of understandinng basic English to form a coherent response. Finally, they suggested I call. I explained I was traveling and calling was not practical. They responded by suggesting I call. I gave up.
Obviously, PayPal doesn't care about security and their online support staff are just a fascade to direct people to the FAQs. I look forward to the day when there is a viable alternate payment system run by a competitor that understands they are in the financial services sector and need to treat security seriously.
I actually got a reply from (I think) a human. In response to my email saying that their first response didn't deal with my question, he/she explained that they send an automated response to whatever appears in the subject heading. The flaw with this of course is that, as far as I can see, when I contact Paypal I can't create my own subject heading but have to choose one of theirs and if it doesn't exactly match my problem the answer won't match my problem either. A classic example of a system set up for the company's convenience rather than the customer's.
Anyway, he/she confirmed that the 729-725 text was indeed from Paypal. However they didn't explain why my attempts to text "yes" in response were all noted as undeliverable. And what's interesting is that, all though thy never received an affirmative answer from me, they processed my "suspicious" payment anyway. So I am at a complete loss to explain how this "Security" step actually works.
If you replied "Yes" to the text, meaning you did authorize the payment, we wouldn't put anything on hold or restrict the account activity as you notified us that the activity was done by you. If you mark "No" then we prevent any further transactions and hold that payment for review as unauthorized. There weren't any changes on the account as you indicated there wasn't any need to investigate, since you initiated or authorized the activity.
If your text was undeliverable, I would advise reaching out to your phone company to see if there was an error on their end when sending the text. If not, let us know so we can look into things on our end to identify if there's an issue, however that number should be able to receive texts at all times from all numbers. I hope this helps!
- Ashley M
Thanks for the helpful reply. It's a pity it has taken several attempts on my part before someone in Paypal actually addressed the questions/concerns I raised. But please note,
1) I attempted to reply "yes" and the text was tagged as "undeliverable". Since I am having no problem sending other texts I assume there's an issue at your end.
2) Although my "yes" text was apparently not delivered to Paypal, my payment was processed anyway ie., without the authorization that you were requesting.
I apologize that you didn't receive a response sooner - the PayPal Community Help Forum is a space for PayPal Community members to work together to solve problems, so moderators are not always available to respond or assist in the Community at all times. We jump in when we can to clarify or provide as much information as possible.
Regarding the payment still going through, if we don't receive a response to the text, we still process the payment, as it's common for people to not respond to texts within 10 minutes. If it is an unauthorized transaction, you can log in and report the charge as unauthorized at your earliest convenience, and we'll investigate the charge then. I appreciate you providing the information regarding your texts, and I'll ensure this feedback is escalated internally. Hopefully this is resolved soon!
- Ashley M