How PayPal and Apple’s Fraud Policies Punish the Honest User

In mid-November last year, I woke up to the sound of my inbox suddenly being flooded with new messages. I have things set to alert me whenever PayPal, Wells Fargo, or iTunes emails me because I know that means that money is either being given to me or taken away. To my surprise, what I discovered that morning was incredibly concerning, and would result in what could be the most frustrating customer experience of my life.

I’m going to state here that this situation is very personal, and my experiences may not reflect the interaction millions of customers of both PayPal and Apple enjoy with these two companies. Unfortunately, this is a story of how the policies of these two companies may result in a downward spiral that can turn a loyal customer into an unsatisfied one.

Day 1: The Fraud

That flood of email I received came from two parties. iTunes was letting me know that purchases had been made inside of an app called iMobster. PayPal, on the other hand, was confirming these purchases and making me aware that it was drawing the funds out of my secondary payment method as I had recently depleted my PayPal account in a withdrawal.

These purchases kept coming in, one after another, until the total added up to roughly $470.00. Each transaction was handled separately, causing PayPal to withdraw funds 11 separate times. By the time I had changed my password in iTunes, I was out a small fortune.

Roughly half of these transactions were covered by PayPal, and the other half covered by my bank. This means that I had a case of fraud extending form iTunes to two separate financial institutions, one being my primary bank account.

I tried to reach iTunes customer service only to discover that iTunes has no over-the-phone customer service. In order to receive support from iTunes, you have to file a request online and wait for a response. As far as I was concerned, someone had hacked my iTunes account, and I needed help right away. I asked my wife to try to find some number for Apple to report fraud, intending to come back to this after calling my financial institutions in hopes of stopping the stream of money before it left me completely broke.

I then called PayPal and told it to stop sending money to iTunes, reporting the incident as fraud. The PayPal representative I spoke to was very courteous and helpful, though he couldn’t confirm whether or not I would experience the dreaded PayPal account freeze as a result. After all, all of my income comes to me via PayPal. A claim was made, and I moved on to my next financial institution, Wells Fargo.

Calling Wells Fargo to report fraud is easy. It has a line set up and I reached someone right away. I told the representative there that I had reported the claim through PayPal, but wanted it noted that the charges made on my account that day were fraudulent in nature. The representative appeared to understand, and helped me make record of the incident.

Then, I managed to get ahold of someone at Apple through its Mac support line. As the owner of a MacBook Pro, iMac, two iPads, three iPhones, two iPod touches, and an iPod Classic, I assumed that I was in the right place. Thankfully, the representative there was able to help me file a claim. I informed the representative that I had filed a claim with both financial institutions, indicating that one had flooded over into another. This may have been my mistake, as I later found out.

Three Days Later

Three days later, my money was returned by PayPal and I received a message that the claims I had submitted were handled. No freeze was put on my account, and everything looked pretty good. Granted, PayPal only refunded the amount that was originally on my PayPal account, stating my financial institution had to file claim for the money it took from Wells Fargo. This is understandable, so I thought nothing of it.

Wells Fargo returned my money that day, too. Everything looked handled and I never experienced a moment of downtime between the initial fraudulent purchases and my refund.

Three Months Later

Three months later, in February, I received a series of email messages from PayPal stating that my account is “limited” until I change my password, confirm my credit card (having removed my primary account from PayPal and replaced it with a MasterCard), and receive a phone call from PayPal. I followed all of these steps, and the account was unfrozen after two days. It wasn’t that dramatic an issue, and I understood the reasoning behind it.

Surprisingly, it took that long for Wells Fargo to file its fraud claim with PayPal. I suppose that’s the bank’s policy, but it seemed like an awfully long time to wait and reach out to another party regarding possible fraud.

I was further shocked to discover that my Apple ID was disabled. This meant I couldn’t update already-purchased apps from the Apple and iTunes App Stores, register OS X Lion or any new equipment purchases, or anything else that required me to log in to my Apple ID. When you test and write about software for a living, this can be a very concerning occurrence.

I spent over an hour on the phone with Mac support (remember, iTunes doesn’t have a customer support line) to have my account re enabled. This call was followed by an apology from the supervisor I was on the line with, stating iTunes recognized the issue was four months old, and everything was fine now. Awesome, I thought.

Wells Fargo sent me a letter that day stating all claims were resolved, and the refund I had received 90 days prior could now be considered permanent. I thought everything was over with. Boy, was I wrong.

One Week Later: The Second Account Freezing

Seven days later, my account was frozen again by PayPal. This freezing was due to the same batch of claims resulting from the same fraud I had reported almost four months ago. I went through the reactivation steps again with PayPal, and everything was put right again within the hour.

My Apple ID was also frozen (again), and this time I received some startling news from the supervisor at Mac support via the chat she had with iTunes support (which was apparently being very pushy with her for having bothered them).

She told me that if I reactivate my account now, and iTunes freezes it again, I’ll never regain access under any circumstances. That means that by using my Apple ID, I could risk losing access to my software purchases, licenses, and OS X Lion. Yes, I could lose everything I had spent my hard earned money on, having to start over from scratch with the hardware I still had in-hand. I’d have to buy Mac OS X Lion again, Final Cut Pro, Compressor, hundreds of dollars in iOS apps, and hundreds more in Mac software.

To say the least, I’m discouraged. The situation I currently find myself in is rather strange. Not only do I have to wait for a mandatory 30 days for PayPal to respond to Wells Fargo (its policy, apparently), but I risk losing all of my software during that time. I opted to have it hold off on reactivating my Apple ID, leaving me (and my wife) without the ability to update our software, register new devices, or enjoy any of the benefits of iCloud.

Final Thoughts

I understand PayPal and Apple having the policies they have, though this experience has left me with a bad taste in my mouth for both companies. Their policies don’t allow for legitimate claims to be filed without risking access to items and services purchased by loyal customers. The problem with iTunes account hacks is that they are too common. My sister-in-law, and several members of the LockerGnome team, have had the same happen to them. Yet, this policy punishes honest users that fall victim to a security flaw that shouldn’t exist.

Yes, I’m a victim. Someone, somewhere, stole $470 from me. By filing a claim, which I’m legally entitled to do, I risk losing thousands more in software that I legally purchased. My livelihood depends on being able to use and review software, and that livelihood is at risk right now unless I volunteer to sit out for what could be well over a month while PayPal, Apple, and Wells Fargo agree that what happened was wrong and needs to be fixed.

This is my story; what is yours? Have PayPal and/or Apple’s policies regarding fraud ever had an impact on you in a negative way? I’ll do my best to keep you updated as to what happens when the matter finally resolves. For now, I can only hope that I don’t need to update my software.

UPDATE: February 29, 2012

After this article was published, I received a call from Apple. The representative that called stated that this post had brought the situation to the company’s attention, and that the repeated disabling was an automatic result of PayPal having submitted the reports multiple times.

She went on to clarify that in the event that the policy regarding three account deactivations and permanent loss of purchases is intended to combat abusers of the chargeback system and that if anyone does get denied access to their account for filing legitimate claims, they are able to protest the ban via iTunes support. There was an acknowledgement of the fact that iTunes has no phone service, and while the online submission system may appear cold and automated, there are hundreds of support reps reading each and every message as it comes in.

At this point, I’m still awaiting PayPal to finish its four-month inquiry into the fraudulent charges. I received a call from a representative today, but was unable to answer. Whomever called me from PayPal left no message and, upon returning the call, no representative had any notes or indication that a call had been made. I can only hope the call was a confirmation that the matter was nearing resolution.

For the time being, the situation appears to be heading towards a smooth resolution, and my Apple purchases (all 240+ of them) are safe. Thanks to Apple for addressing the matter and restoring my faith in the brand.

UPDATE: March 1, 2012

I received another call from PayPal this morning. The agent was quick to recognize that the blog post had brought the situation to their attention before clarifying the situation that took place on their side of the ping pong match that had been taking place over the past several months.

He let me know that he was personally overseeing the completion of the process, assuring me that my account was indeed in good standing and would remain so throughout. The limitations placed on my account previously were automatically applied by their internal system as Wells Fargo, my primary banking institution, filed their claims with PayPal. The situation was further confused by some back-and-forth with iTunes.

He went on to inform me that members of the management team were going to work with Apple to make sure situations like these are avoided in the future. Perhaps this is the one truly good result to come from this muddled mess.

Both PayPal and Apple were asked whether or not something like this could really be resolved if the victim (I use that term loosely) didn’t have a blog of their own to state their case to. As this situation has apparently reached some higher office with both of these companies, I was assured that actions are taking place internally to prevent this type of situation from occurring to others in the future.

I pointed both parties to the comments at the bottom of this blog post. I’m not alone, and this situation is not as uncommon as you might believe. Spoofing (their words, not mine) takes place with iTunes accounts often, and it is a serious problem for everyone involved. Apple loses money having to spend manhours tracking down these cases, customers pay fraud reporting fees (in my case, Wells Fargo charged me $35), and PayPal has to deal with the PR nightmare that is outspoken bloggers such as myself.

I spent ten years working in customer service for AT&T, Apple, local government, and even Sears. Throughout my entire experience, I’ve learned that front-line agents are often pushed between a rock and a hard place. They have to deal with false claims and dishonest customers every day. When an honest case does come along, it’s hard to avoid being jaded to the situation, and the general response is to recite the canned statements you have to give 100 times per day. Being in customer service sucks, and being on the front lines of this effort is more difficult than it sounds.

In this case, an Apple rep in Canada was pressed for information she couldn’t provide because iTunes support for them is only available via chat in increments of about two minutes. Anything more than that and the reps receive some pushback from the often overwhelmed employees. This inability to communicate with iTunes support directly meant the case couldn’t be properly relayed, and made for a difficult experience.

On PayPal’s side, they have to deal with countless cases of fraud every day. PayPal is a big company, and to handle what possibly amounts to millions of transactions every day through eBay and other online sales platforms, dishonesty from customers can be a major problem. The reps are given a set of expectations to follow, and in order to protect the company, they are often as strict as they are broad.

Was I a victim of PayPal or Apple? No. I was the victim of some spoofer that wanted to make a quick buck by selling in-game currency or items. What followed was a mess brought on by a difficult case, confusing policies, and a general lack of communication on the part of everyone involved. If I can hope for anything to come out of my own personal struggles, it’s that no one reading this has to go through it again. If PayPal and Apple are good on their word, your support of this article and amazing outreach may quite possibly help make that happen.

Thank you for reading this, sharing your stories, and spreading the word.

Article Written by

Ryan Matthew Pierson has worked as a broadcaster, writer, and producer for media outlets ranging from local radio stations to internationally syndicated programs. His experience includes every aspect of media production. He has over a decade of experience in terrestrial radio, Internet multimedia, and commercial video production.

  • Jknjk

    To them, you’re just ‘one’ guy and they did some risk calculation stuff.

    • Numberfive

      PAYPAL IS NOT A BANK!!!!!

      It looks like a bank, it walks like a bank and it talks like a bank but PayPal is not bound by banking regulations which means they get to write their own rules and are not subject to the oversight and consumer protections that banks are. 

  • bryanminer

    i hope i don’t find myself in this situation, i actually link my Apple ID right through my Chase account, but good thing i have applecare so i know what route to use if i have to

  • Mako

    Makes me glad that I don’t use Paypal or iTunes.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Shawn-Solomon/601556158 Shawn Solomon

    I really enjoyed using paypal until they began freezing me for no reason after a certain company double billed me spilling over into my primary bank account which was also with wells fargo. I stopped using paypal for business since then, closed the wells fargo account, and even left the company that caused the whole mess as none of them could offer anything to me for the nearly $400 I ended out because of them.

  • ZoubIWah

    my story with paypal: i made some purchases, received what i bought, then a month later (the time is important), changed bank account (deleting the old one)

    paypal then mailed me about my account being deleted and the said purchases that couldn’t be authorized (even thus its been a month, i received the items, and in the paypal interface it looked like it withdrew all the necessary money from the bank since a month).

    it also asked me for about 15EUR of fee per cancelled transactions.

    Basically, it asked me for about 100EUR for their mistake. At this point you can choose to sue them , pay or do nothing. Good luck suing Paypal on this, and if you do nothing you get a recovery company email to work with you. So I had to pony up.

    Basically all these companies are just fraud themselves in my eyes. Worse: you can’t even bypass Paypal sometimes, for some things, they only accept Paypal.

    • http://twitter.com/djmoore711 D. J.

      I absolutely despise “only PayPal” sites. At least Gnomies does allow annual payment by way of credit card.

    • jay

      Need Help.  Im going thru the same thing folks.  

      First off, its rare i have any claims and in December i had three in a row of unusual parts i rarely sell.  two of them didn’t even look at the item and rejected them filed a not as described and kepted the tailights which was worth over $500.  he made me ship him 2 times costing me over 300 and i finally reported this to paypal possible fraud which appears to be similar as the prior to incidence.  well paypal favor the buyer and returned their money without making sure my item was received.  they truly killed me on those transactions.  They then have the nerve to investigate my account like i was performing the fraud.   

      Later that month i check my paypal account, i notice several charges that i never initiation which is similar to matt ryan.  

      they started small $20, $40, then $100 several times.  Dec 24 made several transactions which i know for sure i never made at $100 and same thing on Dec 31s which  was removed from my bank account.    Now total im about losing over $2500. 

      I also found out there was a 1200 transaction they refunded back to my bank and i cannot locate that amount with a matching transaction number.  no on has answers and wellsfargo says its passed the alloted time.  Bullshit i need to know where that money is at.  

      Just recently, my brother had transferred $2000 and $800 to his bank account so he can purchase parts for my customers.  Paypal for some odd reason reversed those withdrawals, is this legal?  he  had his customers file a refund. now they are holding the funds of course and he  issue the refund.  Well Paypal Decides to attack his bank without his authorization.  he never authorized them knowingly they are holding the funds.  This is bullshit and shows you how paypal will steal your money.  they have limited his account bc of one case that was filed by a kid who tried to pull a scam on him. he won the case but paypal is using that one incident.  i dont understand why are they picking on the innocent while the scams get away?  Pretty obvious these folks work for them and reason why they can get away with it.  heres a good example

      I filed a claimed on those unauthorized charges in December and they closed the cased stating ;; these transactions does not meet their criteria, WTF?  these are repeated charges one after the other.  Don’t you think thats a little suspicious?  I dont understand why they ignore the most obvious but help the scam artist which is also obvious they have pulled a fast one.  Please help, i need to get this out into the media so the consumer will understand whats happening.. Im confident theres inside work that work for both companies.  

      BTW< Guess what bank Paypal uses?  WELLSFARGO!  

      please help me get this as i ned to capture my funds.  they are not making any efforts in helping me as they are making me look like the person pulling a scam

  • http://twitter.com/buschic Emily Green

    Hey Matt, I won’t use paypal, under ANY circumstances, I’m now the proud owner of a iMac (hence no more rantings to Chris, about my hatred of JAWS or Windows questions & frustrations!) I’ve had an Apple account for several years, for my 3 iPhones, 2 iPod nano’s, & now my iMac.
     I use a prepaid mastercard for my APPLE Store purchases, I have used my bank card as a payment option, as it has Visa Debit access, but I also prefer to use iTunes cards when possible.. much safer!

  • http://twitter.com/Mathew30 Mathew Lisett

    yep, and im still looking for legal help to sort it out. mine happened in 08, i advertised and sold a friends bike, withdrew the money from PayPal without issue, bike was collected from friends place by the buyer without issue, and feedback was left being positive. a week later we are then told a claim was made and our PayPal account was now -£650 and stated we must pay PayPal this immediately. after many months after me thinking PayPal was at fault, the ombudsman found them to not be, which was fine. how ever i then thought of a few things about the way the whole thing went about, and the possible case of fraud. the details of which i wont discuses here. after a number of months later i got in touch with eBay asking for certain details from my suspicions surrounding the date of sale, i was told go ask PayPal, so i did, i was then told due to data protection act they could not hand out even the buyers details  and up until late 2010 we were chased by several collection agencies demanding the money, which after they threatened court action, i politely told them go ahead see how far you get., so to this day im still needing legal assistance to gain the details and go forward with my plans, but to also regain my £180 that i gained during this time from other sales which was lost when they locked my account in PayPal.  PayPal simply stated they could do nothing and we could have our account back if we forked up the £650.   after i spoke to PayPal originally, i asked about seller protection, they said give us the tracking number, which we explained we couldn’t as it was picked up. they again asked for tracking number (as if they were not listening), they explained without tracking number there’s no protection, then after a few more phone calls, they also stated seller protection was not valid with this sale because it was a motorbike which is not covered,the lady stated i should never have excepted PayPal. which i quickly told her that was impossible since eBay forces the seller to accept PayPal and your auction gets taken down if you tell in the description you don’t accept PayPal. she said “that’s not our fault that’s yours” oh charming.

  • http://twitter.com/Mathew30 Mathew Lisett

    yep, and im still looking for legal help to sort it out. mine happened in 08, i advertised and sold a friends bike, withdrew the money from PayPal without issue, bike was collected from friends place by the buyer without issue, and feedback was left being positive. a week later we are then told a claim was made and our PayPal account was now -£650 and stated we must pay PayPal this immediately. after many months after me thinking PayPal was at fault, the ombudsman found them to not be, which was fine. how ever i then thought of a few things about the way the whole thing went about, and the possible case of fraud. the details of which i wont discuses here. after a number of months later i got in touch with eBay asking for certain details from my suspicions surrounding the date of sale, i was told go ask PayPal, so i did, i was then told due to data protection act they could not hand out even the buyers details  and up until late 2010 we were chased by several collection agencies demanding the money, which after they threatened court action, i politely told them go ahead see how far you get., so to this day im still needing legal assistance to gain the details and go forward with my plans, but to also regain my £180 that i gained during this time from other sales which was lost when they locked my account in PayPal.  PayPal simply stated they could do nothing and we could have our account back if we forked up the £650.   after i spoke to PayPal originally, i asked about seller protection, they said give us the tracking number, which we explained we couldn’t as it was picked up. they again asked for tracking number (as if they were not listening), they explained without tracking number there’s no protection, then after a few more phone calls, they also stated seller protection was not valid with this sale because it was a motorbike which is not covered,the lady stated i should never have excepted PayPal. which i quickly told her that was impossible since eBay forces the seller to accept PayPal and your auction gets taken down if you tell in the description you don’t accept PayPal. she said “that’s not our fault that’s yours” oh charming.

  • Alan Perez

    Hey, the same thing happened to m, it took about a month and a half to get everything sorted out, the weird thing is that it happened to me through the same app, and it was about $245.

    The same problem through PayPal and apple, PayPal got my account so that if I sell on eBay it holds the $$, and my apple ID got disabled, good thing was that it was a secondary Apple ID, same story, they need to figure out a way to detect unusual activities or at least have a hotline to get rid of this issue

  • http://ahylianhuman.me Rod Davis

    Weren’t you the same person a few months ago whose Windows Live ID was hacked into and you lost thousands of Microsoft Points? If so, you seem to have really bad luck with online finance-related security. Regardless, I’m placing the blame squarely on the companies. This is horrible. Good luck with getting everything sorted out.

    • http://chris.pirillo.com/ Chris Pirillo

      No, that was someone else.

    • Ivan Tomica

      As i remember that was Brandon

  • http://ahylianhuman.me Rod Davis

    Weren’t you the same person a few months ago whose Windows Live ID was hacked into and you lost thousands of Microsoft Points? If so, you seem to have really bad luck with online finance-related security. Regardless, I’m placing the blame squarely on the companies. This is horrible. Good luck with getting everything sorted out.

  • http://ahylianhuman.me Rod Davis

    Weren’t you the same person a few months ago whose Windows Live ID was hacked into and you lost thousands of Microsoft Points? If so, you seem to have really bad luck with online finance-related security. Regardless, I’m placing the blame squarely on the companies. This is horrible. Good luck with getting everything sorted out.

  • http://ahylianhuman.me Rod Davis

    Weren’t you the same person a few months ago whose Windows Live ID was hacked into and you lost thousands of Microsoft Points? If so, you seem to have really bad luck with online finance-related security. Regardless, I’m placing the blame squarely on the companies. This is horrible. Good luck with getting everything sorted out.

  • http://www.docmurdock.com Michael Murdock

    Nope. Only time I ever have a problem with paypal it’s resolved quickly with no issues. Usually a simple fraud claim will result in the account debit card being disabled. No problem, that’s why we have multiple paypal accounts. Tranfer funds from one to the other as a GIFT, avoid the fees and the hassles. In fact, have 3 accounts setup just in case. That’s how you avoid the issues as paypal is one of the most sought after targets of phishing people.

    Sorry to hear you had these problems. Wish you luck in resolving them and obviously you can always email the Tim Cook at Apple now and get some things resolved. He’s quite watchful of emails and his team does respond. So losing access to an apple account permanently…not if you’re doing business in a legal and ethical way. They’ll work with you, if you’re not sitting up on your throne barking at them. Yes, Seriously.

  • http://www.docmurdock.com Michael Murdock

    Nope. Only time I ever have a problem with paypal it’s resolved quickly with no issues. Usually a simple fraud claim will result in the account debit card being disabled. No problem, that’s why we have multiple paypal accounts. Tranfer funds from one to the other as a GIFT, avoid the fees and the hassles. In fact, have 3 accounts setup just in case. That’s how you avoid the issues as paypal is one of the most sought after targets of phishing people.

    Sorry to hear you had these problems. Wish you luck in resolving them and obviously you can always email the Tim Cook at Apple now and get some things resolved. He’s quite watchful of emails and his team does respond. So losing access to an apple account permanently…not if you’re doing business in a legal and ethical way. They’ll work with you, if you’re not sitting up on your throne barking at them. Yes, Seriously.

  • Axure

    I’m constantly surprised by the trust people put in all the “hip” companies, like Apple or Facebook. And when you’re dealing with companies that create such obsessively closed ecosystems, like Apple, you’re just asking for trouble.

    I’ll tell you my experience: No problems whatsoever. Because all I have is a 5yo iPod Classic with no Apple account.

    As for experiences with other companies, I’ve just had a phone call from my cell operator today, begging me to move to a much better contract. Because I’ve got an unlocked phone and they know I can jump ship any second.

  • http://twitter.com/onfire4g05 Justin Osborne

    Thanks for this post… because of it I’ve removed deauthorized my iTunes account from PayPal. I depend on PayPal too much and have it tied to my bank account and cards. Anyway, I’ve moved on to better pastures anyway (Amazon MP3, Android Market), so the only thing that keeping it was really doing was setting me up for potential issues down the road.

    If I ever decide to pay the Apple hooligans for anything else, it’ll be just one time payments. Heh, maybe I’ll upgrade when Mountain Lion comes out… but with that whole sandboxing mess, there’s probably very little chance of that happening. A move to a Linux distro is looking better and better every day since Windows 8 also seems headed towards an even bigger disaster lol. Such a shame to see the two great OSes get more and more dummied down… but I digress. :)

  • Rodrigo Goncalves

    Hey Matt, thanks for sharing this. I was not comfortable with Paypal, now I am sure that I will not use it. Just to let you know, you are still lucky. If you were here in Brazil, you would have much more problemns. As the legal system here does not work well, they usually do not care about us.
    Listening stories like yours make me fell afraid of using Paypal here.

  • Catherine White Photography

    I refuse to use PayPal

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LO2WNENU6YQXAHHBVQJZPQW5W4 Jonathan

       visited your site (out of curiosity to see what you do use) and found that its a completely unworkable mess, no way to escape the slide show and click on the “information” link. Fix that! your clients might get just as annoyed and leave as I did.

    • Ben

      Same. The first and only time I’ve used PayPal was when registering for a Gnomies subscription.

  • Bitemore

    Here’s what I wrote on Facebook when I shared this article there:” Here is another good reason to boycott Apple.  In addition to their insane profits that are doing nothing for anyone except cause pain to the outsourced labor and not creating a single job for Americans, they have about the same customer service as organized crime (except that organized crime seems a bit more up-to-date). I wouldn’t have another Apple product if they were giving them away for free.”  I might add that the only Apple product I own is an old iPad, purchased about two months before the iPad2 was released.  I hardly ever use the darned thing except to download free books now and then and play Solitaire… not the best reason to spend nearly $800 on an all-but-useless gadget.  I hope Apple goes the way of Steve Jobs, except I hope that while Jobs rests in peace, Apple goes down in flames.

  • http://www.facebook.com/robert.santellan Robert Santellan

    I’ve dealt with this same thing before. Very frustrating. Though I tried Mac support too and they turned me away.

  • http://socialpositive.wordpress.com/ Nick

    I don’t have experience with other two institutions, and I’ll say don’t use Paypal. 

  • http://socialpositive.wordpress.com/ Nick

    I don’t have experience with other two institutions, and I’ll say don’t use Paypal. 

  • Nicholas Josephson

    I personally have had wonderful costumer service from Apple. They have replaced or fixed many of my problems free of charge. My recommendation to Matt is to go to an Apple Store and explain what happened. I find the Apple costumer service in person tends to be better.

    • Aptwebapps

      Did you the read the bit where they threatened him with termination? How will it help if he goes to a store and gets some nice, friendly, in-person service and then his account gets terminated because someone at Paypal forgot to click the right checkbox?

      • Nicholas Josephson

        I agree that companies like Paypal and Apple need to communicate better. I suggested going to the physical store because the employees are not on a script like they are when you call them, they will acutely investigate and find a real solution for you. I know this because when I broke my iPad screen I called Apple to see what they could do about it; they offered me a flat out fee, but when I went to the store they replaced it for free. I hope I answered your question.

        • Aptwebapps

          Yes, but replacing a screen is within their purview. Stopping someone else from terminating his account at some unspecified time in the future is probably beyond their abilities.

          • Nicholas Josephson

            Very good point, but it is still worth a shot.

          • Nicholas Josephson

            Very good point, but it is still worth a shot.

  • Nicholas Josephson

    Wow, just wow. How can you justify anything you just said? 

  • http://searchanddresscue.com Kristin Marshall

    Sorry to hear this has happened to you… it sounds like such a pain dealing with PayPal, WF and iTunes. I haven’t had issues in the past with PayPal, they’re usually very helpful. BUT I have had issues with eBay.

    My boyfriend’s account is the one we use to sell items, and we sold a very high end wool coat. Sent it out asap, received payment quickly — all was well. About two weeks later, the buyer claimed that the coat wasn’t in the condition we stated — good condition, nothing wrong. They wanted the tag attached, which it was, but the label inside the coat was crossed out. We took photos of it before we sold the coat, so they KNEW the tag inside was marked out. Clearly these people wanted to try to return it to the store, despite it being long out of production.

    PayPal/eBay sides on the buyer’s side, and the buyers knew this. In claiming that the coat was not in expected condition, they were granted a refund, AUTOMATICALLY. But, they were required to send the coat back. They didn’t. So, eBay still expected us to pay for the automatic refund without them sending the coat back! Ridiculous. We refused and they shut my boyfriend’s eBay account down permanently, after being a seller since the early 2000s.

    • http://twitter.com/djmoore711 D. J.

      Just another reason to say forget PayPal.  I am sorry eBay has chose to rely on that form of payment so heavily! I refuse to use eBay or PayPal anymore–have since around 2007.

  • http://searchanddresscue.com Kristin Marshall

    Sorry to hear this has happened to you… it sounds like such a pain dealing with PayPal, WF and iTunes. I haven’t had issues in the past with PayPal, they’re usually very helpful. BUT I have had issues with eBay.

    My boyfriend’s account is the one we use to sell items, and we sold a very high end wool coat. Sent it out asap, received payment quickly — all was well. About two weeks later, the buyer claimed that the coat wasn’t in the condition we stated — good condition, nothing wrong. They wanted the tag attached, which it was, but the label inside the coat was crossed out. We took photos of it before we sold the coat, so they KNEW the tag inside was marked out. Clearly these people wanted to try to return it to the store, despite it being long out of production.

    PayPal/eBay sides on the buyer’s side, and the buyers knew this. In claiming that the coat was not in expected condition, they were granted a refund, AUTOMATICALLY. But, they were required to send the coat back. They didn’t. So, eBay still expected us to pay for the automatic refund without them sending the coat back! Ridiculous. We refused and they shut my boyfriend’s eBay account down permanently, after being a seller since the early 2000s.

  • MrDuJeR

    This is why my apple id has no payment option

    if mine was hacked the hacker has to put his credit card to purchase anything

  • HarryCreter

    About a year ago I had my itunes account hacked and they charged about $500 of stuff to my paypal account. My paypal was connected to my bank account, and none of the charges had actually made it to my bank yet. I contacted paypal to inform them that I did not make the purchases in question and to not transfer the money. The reply I got back is that the had to take the funds pending an investigation and if it was found that I did not make the purchases they would return the money to me. I did found this appalling, it was my money which I still had in my bank account, I told them I did not make the purchased and not to touch my money ie, withdrawling permission to withdraw it from my account, and they tell me that they are going to take it anyway pending an investigation ? I quickly called my bank put a stop payment on those charges costing me some money, but far less then the $500 they were going to take from me. 

    • http://twitter.com/djmoore711 D. J.

      PayPal is such a horrible company. I fully agree with you, block them from making their withdrawl.  I wonder if they make money off of taking a withdrawal?

  • HarryCreter

    About a year ago I had my itunes account hacked and they charged about $500 of stuff to my paypal account. My paypal was connected to my bank account, and none of the charges had actually made it to my bank yet. I contacted paypal to inform them that I did not make the purchases in question and to not transfer the money. The reply I got back is that the had to take the funds pending an investigation and if it was found that I did not make the purchases they would return the money to me. I did found this appalling, it was my money which I still had in my bank account, I told them I did not make the purchased and not to touch my money ie, withdrawling permission to withdraw it from my account, and they tell me that they are going to take it anyway pending an investigation ? I quickly called my bank put a stop payment on those charges costing me some money, but far less then the $500 they were going to take from me. 

  • Sully

    I constantly Get  Phoney E-Mails From Folks trying to Steal My Pay pal Account Info . . bad JUJU 

  • Steveo

    That is the problem with DRM.

  • http://bruceandsallywitt.wordpress.com/ Sally K Witt

    Wow

  • http://twitter.com/djmoore711 D. J.

    I abosolutely hate PayPal.  As a frequent overseas traveler (and VPN user) they lock my account constantly.  I only use it when I have no other choice.  I have depleted all my funds from that account so I am not worried about it much anymore (thanks to my annual subscription to Gnomies)!  Seems like everytime I log in it becomes locked.  They are even harder to cancel than to unlock!  I would not use PayPal if I were you and just go to prepaid if you had the option, or a debit card that is not as likely to be hacked, like PayPal.  Good luck with your current situation.

  • http://twitter.com/djmoore711 D. J.

    Wow! How do they not create jobs for Americans? So, all the engineers in California are not American? Steve Jobs and Steve Woz, themselves, were not Americans, born and raised in California? Get your facts right before you spew some hatred, trolling trash in a public forum.  Some people believe anything they read, just because it’s on the Internet–the least you could do is a little fact checking!
    Apple does not cause pain to the out-sourced worker; that is the out-sourced companies’ fault. Apple wants to help the workers, pushing for better working standards in third-world countries.
    iPads are extremely useful. Organizations and schools are findnig places for them all the time to enhance their productivity. 

    • Strydrdenis

       You must be the most gullible person around. By the way I have a Sky-Hook for sale for cheap and in good working order. Just send me lots of money for it and it will be in the mail within the week

    • Bitemore

      As of yesterday, Apple was worth more than $500 Billion (with a “B”), more than any other company.  More than Microsoft.  More than Exxon Mobile.  And while it provides jobs for those high in the corporate structure, its assembly lines are in China.  We sure could use those assembly lines here, in OUR country – and even if Apple had to pay them three times what they pay the Chinese workers, Apple would still make a huge (and obscene) profit.  Until every last one of those jobs is brought to THESE shores, I have no use whatsoever for any Apple product (and there are other brands that do the same darned things, anyway).  Their customer service, apparently, could be improved, but I’m betting Apple is too cheap to care or to put any money into providing first-rate service.  At least in that area, they have a lot of company.  Customer Service these days is just a phrase, it seems, that no one much cares about.

      • http://twitter.com/djmoore711 D. J.

        Well, looks
        to me like you don’t really use much technology then, because almost EVERY
        computer manufacturer uses outsourced labor. They have some of the best
        customer service among all manufacturers. Oh, yeah, when I call I get an
        American on the line, which is more than can be said for Dell, HP, Asus, or any
        other PC tech support.

        Apple (along
        with Dell, HP, Asus, and many other companies) are all using outsourced labor. I’m
        beginning to wonder how you typed this comment if you don’t buy from companies
        that use outsourced labor.

        Oh, yeah,
        they are only ASSEMEBLED in China. The parts come from other countries,
        including America!

        Let’s not
        argue. Just read this article on why Foxconn is used, over US plants: (Then
        you’ll see why you assertion is absurd…)

        http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2012/01/23/why_apple_can_t_make_iphones_in_america

  • Shawn Primrose

    Matt, what happened to you was a terrible thing and i am sorry. But with how greedy apple is with overpricing crappy hardware i am somehow not surprised they would do something like this.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1600159663 Glorin Chiourea

      why  crappy hardware? lol

    • http://twitter.com/jrdn_v Jordan Vasquez

      Where’s the crappy hardware?  Cuz I don’t see it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/Sam.Sanderson Sam Sanderson

    ive had serious issues with Paypal in the sense that my account got shut down permanently because even though i went through all the steps to get it back they failed to re-activate it

  • Guest

    This kids is why we jailbreak.

    • Kamjam

      This kids, is why we don’t use Apple!

    • Resident_Pluto

      lmao, jailbreaking also voids all warranty & only makes you look for suspicious smart one *eye roll*

  • vbliss

    Wow, what a lot of bad press for PayPal!  I have never had anything but great customer service with PayPal.  They have caught fraudulent charges before I did and I check my accounts more than once per day!  When I have called them to alert them to a fraudulent charge (only twice to-date) they have refunded my account within 24 hours.  My bank (WF) also cooperated fully and I had no trouble other than to change passwords, etc.  I was down for 24 hours – that’s it.  However, I own nothing from Apple.  I don’t like their proprietary attitude with their software, and obviously, this policy spills over to their EULA  and their fraud departments.  The fact that they don’t have a customer service number for iTunes doesn’t surprise me – most of my friend that have iTunes accounts complain about the lack of service (or as they state – no service from Apple).  Apple has become what Microsoft was – a bloated company with an attitude that ‘YOU WILL PUT UP WITH WHATEVER THEY HAND OUT’ — too bad if you don’t like it.  I wonder if they will suffer the same fate as Microsoft and eventually eat crow as they try to recover their customer base.

    This financial policy ‘bug’ must be figured out – I really don’t feel it is the fault of PayPal alone.  Apple…wake up and satisfy your customers when they have issues with your services…

  • http://twitter.com/writerlisamason Lisa Mason

    This is exactly what happened to me a week ago and it was the same dang gang- that iMobster thing. Apple Customer Service made things very difficult for me but Paypal was great and refunded my money within 24 hours. As for Apple, my experience was just as you described yours above. I’ve been with Paypal more than 10 years and never had issues. I will NEVER connect it to an iTunes account every again, however.

    • https://plus.google.com/112301869379652563135/posts Matt Ryan

      Wow.

  • Daniel Gartin

    My account was only hacked one time,it works fine now

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_AOS6PPFFIWS7GQIP4TBYQR5BCQ Bill Posters

    What happened to the iMobster app? How exactly would the thief who stole your money actually receive the money without being caught? Wouldn’t the money spent in the app go to the makers of iMobster? Obviously I’m not clued up on how such fraud can happen in iTunes, but it would be nice if this was explained. Makes me worry about my own iTunes account.

  • http://brendon1555.com/ Brendon Lees

    Only two days ago I also had fraudulent in-app purchases made on my account. Luckily it was with iTunes Store credit and it was all fixed with a single run through the iTunes support express lane. Although I do still need to request to have my account unblocked, as they locked it as a precautionary measure.

  • eleisia

    I’ve used PayPal for small expenditures without any problem so far.

  • Damuskinous

    I’m sorry I think the biggest mistake here is the use of PayPal.  I once got an account with them and like 3 month later I started getting Spearfishing emails.  It was the first time that I got spam emails with my name and last name on them. From PayPal asking me to very my the user name and password for security.  I contacted PayPal directly and told them the situation.  Of course they said it wasn’t them, and that if I ever receive and email like that.  That I should ignore it.  But that wasn’t the point the point is somehow this people are getting hacked of their user information to they point your info is not safe in there servers.  I’ve been using Itunes sense I believe Tiger.  and with a bank card and also using the occasional Itunes card. Not once has my account been hacked in Itunes.  Also It pays if you have and Alpha Numeric password 8 characters long and with a capital letter.  To maximize password strength.  

  • Doug

    II think that this article is the perfect example of why this whole apple notion of all through the app store model can screw consumers. First its a pure greed play with the 70-30 split that Microsoft is now looking to adopt, its only a matter of time before prices go up if these stores take off. Software companies are going to try to make up that lost revenue. I think the worst part of it is you don’t get anything for your money. You do not actually own the software. There are many scenarios where aps could break with Apple or Microsoft and then you lose access to your software that you paid for and if you need it for work you have to buy it again. Apple is going to get to the appstore only first but I think that if Apple users allow it to happen without putting up a fight that’s what all PC users are in for. I feel sorry for business users and administrators, this is going to be hard for them to deal with all the software tied to separate IDs.

  • http://www.facebook.com/scott.galvin Scott Galvin

    ” all of my income comes to me via PayPal” <– at that moment I stopped reading. Obtain a merchant account (ask your bank) and you won't have to deal with stuff like this any more. 

    • https://plus.google.com/112301869379652563135/posts Matt Ryan

      Not everyone has the option. :)

  • http://eazynetbiz.ws Kao Saephan

    Paypal is horrible. I was a huge ebay power user and sold thousands worth of merchandise every month. Out of the blue one day, paypal froze my account with over $10,000 that was stolen from me. They refused to release that money to me and they had no reason whatsoever for freezing my account. The whole ordeal started when I sold a game to someone, who apparently paid with a fraudulent credit card. The $60 payment for that game was reversed by paypal, after I had already shipped the game to the customer. Because of that, they froze my account and refused to restore it even after I validated everything on their list of steps. They claimed to have refunded the money in my paypal account back to my customers, but I’m willing to bet anything that they kept it instead. I will never use paypal for anything, ever.

    I haven’t had any problems with apple or itunes though. I’ve spent roughly $600 with them since 2008 and the account is tied to a prepaid mastercard with limited funds anyway. I usually add itunes gift cards instead, since my 11 yr old son also shares the account with me and I give him full access to the account so that he can download apps to his ipod touch, given that he’s aware of his itunes gift card balance and does not go over. He understands that if he goes over, even once, I will restrict the account and he’ll never get to download apps freely again.

    I understand your frustration and I’m pissed for you! I hope things turn out well and if it doesn’t, you should take it to the courts. I wish I had when paypal screwed me over, but the statute of limitation has expired on my case and it was a huge loss for me.

  • http://twitter.com/Rayalvarado Rayalvarado

    ive had bad experience with paypal as well it seem that there is a lack of communication, i feel like im doing a loan modification. for this reason i have stopped using paypal and began to use my credit card instead as i have fraud protection and its no hassle to deal with

  • http://twitter.com/Rayalvarado Rayalvarado

    ive had bad experience with paypal as well it seem that there is a lack of communication, i feel like im doing a loan modification. for this reason i have stopped using paypal and began to use my credit card instead as i have fraud protection and its no hassle to deal with

  • silvioc

    Hi Matt,  Sorry to hear about your poor experience.  However, I felt it a bit disingenuous that you didn’t disclose your past employment at Apple in customer service (according to your Google+ work history).

    Next time please state your ties to the parties you write about more frankly.

    • Dougal

       For what reason?
      While it was stated in a March 1st update, it wasn’t relevant to the actual case, merely a side note regarding customer service representatives.
      The way he handled Apple was no different than PayPal or his bank.

  • Stephen Campbell

    A) A great many people have had problem with Paypal (though I recognize that apple appears to be the main culprit here).  A great many really smart people have wrote about those problems.  The writing is on the wall, either learn the hard way or get used to bad customer service.  Your choice.

    B) Apple.  I could say a great many things here. I think I will go with the most obvious.  Apple is not going to change.  If you want to protest their terrible customer service, vote with your dollars.  Consider not using itunes.  If you are feeling exceptionally victimized, how about you buy an old fashioned pc with your choice of windows or a great many free linux distributions that look and are as good if not better then Mac OS (or windows for that matter), instead of your next Mac computer.  

    C) Read A again.  Can’t emphasize A enough.

  • Ernest Koncaba

    Matt, I had a problem with Pay Pal some time back and I was not able to access my account for about 3 years. I didn’t have any funds in my account, so that didn’t bother me. Then, I needed to purchase an item and Pay Pal was their only option for payment. It took me about 10 minutes to get my account reactivated and I ahve had no problem since.
    As for iTunes, I do not use them at all. I also will not put my bank account on my Pay Pal account.

  • Ernest Koncaba

    Matt, I had a problem with Pay Pal some time back and I was not able to access my account for about 3 years. I didn’t have any funds in my account, so that didn’t bother me. Then, I needed to purchase an item and Pay Pal was their only option for payment. It took me about 10 minutes to get my account reactivated and I ahve had no problem since.
    As for iTunes, I do not use them at all. I also will not put my bank account on my Pay Pal account.

  • http://twitter.com/tincanman2010 Tin Canman

    You’ve hit on something that has concerned me for awhile now. It used to be if you couldn’t sort a problem by phone, you could go in for a sit down chat and that usually resolved things. Not because you can rant and bully, but because then both parties can use body language as well as voice to communicate.

    Trying to solve customer service and quality issues solely by filing tickets, email or chat interaction between strangers is not going to be very effective for either party. First to introduce video conferencing for help desks – Amazon, you listening? –  leapfrogs over a lot of competitors.

  • mrtortoise

    similar experiences with steam
    the solution … dont give them anymore money .. i am sure these practises are illegal in the uk.

  • mrtortoise

    similar experiences with steam
    the solution … dont give them anymore money .. i am sure these practises are illegal in the uk.

  • WVM

    This is the new world of cloud computing. My Amazon account was hacked a while ago, I reported it to them as well as to the police. Amazon then closed my account forever, which means that I won’t be able to access and re-download my purchased mp3 files. (My old hard disk was broken and unfortunately I did not make a backup of my music files.)

  • Fuxy

    PayPal sucks. Sure it’s convenient but there is so much room for improvement. Btw never use a credit card on any websites or services if you must use a card get a Debit card and put a small amount cash on it or any card that would limit the damage caused. And if you don’t have to fill in a form with your name and stuff to get it even better. Keeps you annonimous …kinda

  • http://aeoaeo330.myopenid.com/ James

    This story is just yet another example of why I avoid Apple like the plague. I made up my mind long ago that Apple was not worth their outrageous prices, and they continue to prove this more and more daily.

    I am on the lookout for a Paypal alternative as well. As soon as someplace like WePay goes international to the point that my friend in the UK can use it, I’m dropping Paypal ASAP.

    • http://sourcebolt.com/ Muhamed Heljic

      Apple isn’t the only company who does this, the initial problem causer is PayPal not Apple. You’re avoiding Apple for a stupid reason, Apple is worth what they set the price at, how do you expect a company to compete and progress without money? The price isn’t there for no reason, they are in control of every piece of hardware and software which makes a company strong. Apple is a role model to other aspiring companies..

      The only decent PayPal alternative is Google Checkout/Wallet which is the most popular alternative, up to you..

      • http://twitter.com/jrdn_v Jordan Vasquez

        Not to mention how they have to pay the employees at Apple Stores! 

        Have fun returning a Dell, or requesting a repair for an Acer!

      • http://twitter.com/jrdn_v Jordan Vasquez

        Not to mention how they have to pay the employees at Apple Stores! 

        Have fun returning a Dell, or requesting a repair for an Acer!

        • Afasd

          I don’t had any issues returning stuff to dell.

      • http://twitter.com/jrdn_v Jordan Vasquez

        Not to mention how they have to pay the employees at Apple Stores! 

        Have fun returning a Dell, or requesting a repair for an Acer!

      • http://twitter.com/jrdn_v Jordan Vasquez

        Not to mention how they have to pay the employees at Apple Stores! 

        Have fun returning a Dell, or requesting a repair for an Acer!

  • http://twitter.com/AvionicsMan Tod Lansing

    Well it is a crappy system for sure. The big wheel turns extremely slow and apparently backwards in your case!! 

  • http://www.dancatchpole.com Dan Catchpole

    How would this have solved the problem of fraud or the bureaucratic hoops he had to jump through while resolving these issues with his bank, paypal, Apple, etc? 

  • http://stanfaryna.wordpress.com Stan Faryna

    This is just more proof that Steve Jobs is a genius. Because Apple has you right where they want you. On the verge of paying for everything all over again. Next time, you won’t be so lucky. [grin]

  • http://twitter.com/lolitsdon Dominick A. Totaro

    Last summer my friend showed me this dream job he had. He would sell items on eBay for this guy/company and then send the person 80% of the profit and keep the rest. The guy would send out the items and tell him if/when to list more and what to list. My friend sold 8 cameras, making his cut a total of $800. 

    He then introduced me to the same person and I too listed some items. By the next day I had received a call from PayPal saying that they feel I have been a victim of a fraud scandal. My PayPal account was not touched as I had not sent/received any money, however, my eBay account was put on freeze. The situation was sorted out and I alerted my friend and he fixed everything with the people who bought the cameras and eBay/PayPal with no freezes.

    Almost a year later my eBay account is still frozen… I can’t buy/sell anything on eBay. I have contacted them multiple times and waited and waited. Not too long ago I called them and they gave me the info I needed to have my account re-enabled. They sent a follow up email with the fax number which I had to send them a proof of ID and a bank statement to prove my info. I followed the instructions and never got a response.

    I called them about two weeks ago asking why I got no response or email or anything from them. They checked my account status/info and told me what I already knew because they told me it many times before: “Because of [my] your situation, the group that handles this type of situation does not have phone support. So you need to contact them through email.”

    I had contacted them the first time I was told this. I never received a response. Two weeks ago when I called them about my lack of a response from them, they told me about the email-only support team and that they never received my fax…which was utter BS. The kind support person on the phone said that she would be sending me an email within the next day or so updating me on the status of my account and/or what I need to do. I have received NO emails from them since. Now at this point I think any other person would have either cut their losses and dropped eBay altogether or just made a new account. Me, however, I see no point in doing this as they probably would either deny the account to be made or see that the same person/PayPal account just opened a new account and block it too. I would like to be able to use my eBay account as I have some unused college books I’d like to sell along with other things PLUS I wanted to buy some items there but I suppose they don’t want/need my money. In this situation I feel like this[see the image I uploaded].

    Advice?

  • http://chris.pirillo.com/ Chris Pirillo

    Suggesting that this is a reason for jailbreaking only illustrates your fundamental lack of understanding of the problem.

  • phill

    this is good and at least something is kinda of being done about it

  • Mj328

    so frustrating!!!! reminds me of the absolutely terrible policies Ebay impose on there sellers. unfortunately this once amazing company as been taken over by scammers who cheat sellers
    everyday and Ebay does nothing but protect them with their stupid rules and time lines. all these companies have gotten so big they have forgotten about the consumers who make them great!!!!!

  • B Smith

    One other thing to consider… somehow in the transition to iCloud and the iOS 5.0.1 and OS X Lion, I now have two iTunes accounts that are tied to the same e-mail address.  I have asked iTunes support to combine the two (all apps, balances etc) into just one account…. that is not possible.  So, about you slice off $50,000.00 of the $100BILLION cash stock pike and develop a database structure that embraces modern technology and call me back.  I have incredible faith in the brand, it is the processes and policies that leave me wondering…

  • http://twitter.com/djmoore711 D. J.

    Try to read some news before you go around accusing
    people of being “gullible.”  All of what I stated is true–just look it up.  ;-)  Glad I could help educate you, even though you don’t seem to want it.

  • Ali Haider

    Great article. Companies need to be aware that customers can get frustrated by their ill thought policies. I keep hearing about bad customer service by Apple and for someone who is thinking of buying a first MacBook pro it is disturbing. However, I have account with Apple for a long time and never had any security breaches.

  • http://twitter.com/codedivine Rahul

    “Thanks to Apple for addressing the matter and restoring my faith in the brand.”
    Dude that only happened when you raised it on a fairly high traffic site, and caught the internet’s attention. What about the rest of us?

    • Ivan Karkour

      Thanks to Matt and everyone else here, it’s an issue that, according to what the reps stated, will be something that both PayPal and Apple are going to resolve together for future cases.  This article benefited him and potentially lots of other customers in the future.
      Chris Pirillo even stated that if anyone has a problem with any company, LockerGnome can be a platform you can use to get your issue across and maybe some attention.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kenric-Regan/743833967 Kenric Regan

    I’m sorry I always have bad experiences with apple. You’re so locked in with them it drives me nuts. I don’t know…I’m running windows 7 with a dual boot of Linux Mint…I love em both…I have left apple behind…I’m glad your issue is on it;s way to resolution though! People that steal hard earned cash really chap my hide!

    1 caveat – I do love apple hardware…sometimes I wish they’d forgo the software and release barebones systems.

  • Raven880

    I will NOT use Paypal anymore.  After more than a year of fighting with them over their insistence that I give them my bank account info in order to continue using their service (or get their own high interest credit card) and knowing that that would be a disaster, I have just quit using them altogether.  I could easily foresee happening to me just what happened to Chris and I don’t have the influence he has to get it fixed.  Paypal just doesn’t care about the individual customer’s security and I won’t risk mine by giving them my bank information.  The security issues with iTunes do truly concern me.

  • http://twitter.com/jrdn_v Jordan Vasquez

    And who’s to say that this won’t happen for any other company and/or product?  

    PayPal was half the problem and they aren’t affiliated to Apple in any way, yet you only hone into Apple…

    • http://twitter.com/jj_see J.J. See

      The “Company” I’m using is Linux. I donate for quality free software, thus this does not happen to me. 

      • http://twitter.com/robotUNIXorn Stefan Keil

        Oh und how do you donate? With your CC or Paypal? So?

  • Bitemore

    Rush Limbaugh?  Really?  ’Nuff said.  I’m outta here.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/AEDA6Q6NHDGSXVMUM7NEWMPN6Y Fiction

    “…and not creating a single job for Americans..” 

    Apple highlights creation of 514,000 jobs in Americahttp://www.appleinsider.com/articles/12/03/02/apple_highlights_creation_of_514000_jobs_in_america.html

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/AEDA6Q6NHDGSXVMUM7NEWMPN6Y Fiction

    “…and not creating a single job for Americans..” 

    Apple highlights creation of 514,000 jobs in Americahttp://www.appleinsider.com/articles/12/03/02/apple_highlights_creation_of_514000_jobs_in_america.html

  • http://crizzo.me Christopher

    Why not remove PayPal and your bank as a payment option and just buy an iTunes gift card or a pre-paid Visa until this gets fixed? That should at least keep your iTunes account in good standing for the time being. Just a thought. 

  • Me

    I have 2 friends that had this very similar situation. I think that maybe that’s why some people go into pirating, because as a loyal customer they get ignored.

  • http://techjohnson.com/ Steven Johnson

    I’m in a semi similar situation with my account, as well. Although, I think mine is slightly different. I randomly had my Apple ID account hacked and someone purchased 27 applications, all $0.99 a piece. I opened up a claim with iTunes Support Email and they told me my account has been refunded the money. The next day, I noticed another $20 randomly missing from my PayPal account. It’s odd, I switched all my passwords and some how money keeps getting withdrawn from my account.

    • kgb

      I’ve had multiple things charged to my iTunes account on 4 different occasions.  Not just one item at a time…MULTIPLE.  Do a google search, it’s happening to thousands of people and has been going on for a LONG time.  You can change you password, or even open a new account & it’ll happen to every account you have.

  • http://twitter.com/jj_see J.J. See

    Apple fans can’t take criticism, even constructive criticism from someone who has more cash funneled into Apple hardware than my car cost, as is evident by the posts surrounding this one.

    Get over it, kids. Really, Apple’s not that cool.

  • http://www.dragonblogger.com Justin Germino

    I had a similar incident with my Xbox Live account, it was hacked, linked to Paypal and Microsoft Points were purchased like crazy, I was out almost $90 and had to open a case with Microsoft who suspended my Live account for 2 weeks, money was refunded in 2 weeks, but my original game ID/handle appears to be permanently banned now and can’t use it anymore.  

  • Ivan Karkour

    Purchases can still be made within apps, even if they are free from Cydia or from where ever.  This can still happen to a jail-broken phone.  You missed the point.

  • kgb

    This is why I no longer buy Apple products or use iTunes OR PayPal.

  • http://c3mdigital.com/ Chris Olbekson

    Another story and reason why I will never use Paypal ever again for any reason.  I’m a web developer and one of my clients paid a very large invoice and when I tried to transfer the money Paypal limited my account and required proof of delivery before they would allow me access to my money.  Of course since it was a service I had no proof.  They made we wait 180 days before they finally released it. 

    I have other friends who have been scammed by a group of affiliate chargeback scammers and Paypal refuses to honor their merchant protection policy. Luckily there are companies like Stripe and Square to use as an alternative.

  • Gilbertr

    I am going through exactly what you went through. I just had around $350-400 USD charged by an app called “Haypi”. Any steps that could help me sort this out, I would definitely appreciate it

  • jeffj

    your not alone. i just noticed exact same situation and both attacks dec 24th 600 dollars and dec 31 for another 500.  three unusual paypal tarnsactions from unknown customers filed dispute and paypal failed to look into fraud as i alerted them with these unusual customers i rarely get which resulted in three transactions all filed Not as described and all from NYC and NJ area.  im about to file a all the transactions i have reviewed

  • Paulgrinberg

    Matt, one word….LINUX!

    If your Apple ID can be deactivated and you lose all of your Apple licenses, all of your third party software and just about all your services and have to buy them again that’s the biggest cartel racket I have ever heard of.  No, it’s worse it’s called stealing.  They can steal the licences and access rights to your machine at any time just on whim by their policies and procedures without even refunding you. 

    My only question for you is, how could you be so gullible?  You are a techie after all, you should have known better then take a walk into Apples poisoned walled garden.  Apple these days makes Microsoft look like the good guys, what a tripped out situation!  At least Microsoft would never revoke licences like that, and especially with third party software like Adobe, wow!

    Go Linux Go Linux Go Linux…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_D54RP4VO3B6SLNLQUFWTEXPT4U Vegas

    I’m glad I only bought one or two apps with the other Apple ID that’s disabled. Sheesh.

  • GrapplerX

    I am dealing with the same situation still, both PayPal and Apple have not changed a thing

  • Gus Baganz

    A few years ago, I had a PayPal fraud incident, but only lost $8.00…I’ve reported it three times, and nothing has happened. You’ve had a much more successful experience with customer service I guess!

  • David

    What I’d seriously like to know is how Matt Ryan got his account hacked in the first place, that’s probably the most important thing in here and you left it out.

    I know there are hundreds of ways that this could have happened, so what I’m asking is, do you know how you got hacked? or do you at least suspect anything?

  • Terry

    fantastic post. Appreciate the dwtailed account. helpful, insightful, excellent account.

  • nick

    easy solution is if stuff like this happens apple and pay-pal both have a board of directors that receives mail right them explain your situation after going through the proper channels and keep wrighting them it took me 3 letters to my insurance company to get a phone number for the vice president of costumer service

  • Scruffy Nerfherder

    “As the owner of a MacBook Pro, iMac, two iPads, three iPhones, two iPod touches, and an iPod Classic,” It’s no wonder funds were such an issue. For half the money, you could have gotten twice the computer if you’d just stayed away from Mac.

    But still, I do feel your pain. The honest person is generally punished because of the masses of dishonest people and the Draconian policies put in place to ”protect” those few honest folk.

  • Andrew Jamison

    6 months Late here but i just read the article, Congratulations on resolving the issues you had Ryan! Also thank you for watching out for those of us who may not be as much of an huge customer with Apple or PayPal!.

  • Stacey

    I’m going through a terrible time with iTunes right now. Over the past month my ID has been disabled 3 times. The first time was due to fraud and the second time was due to paypal filing disputes with iTunes on my behalf because they expected fraud. But there was no fraud the purchases I made were legit. The third time (today) I called in and had my account reenabled again and found out once again it was disabled due to the paypal disputes. I was told if I am disabled again they will not reenable my account. I have spent a few thousand dollars over the past several years on apps, books, music, movies, tv shows and am scared to death I am going to lose access to all of my media for something that is not my fault. Do you have any advice or a contact number for someone who can help me?

  • http://slrman.wordpress.com/ James Smith

    I have had similar bad experiences with both Apple and PayPal. After some frustrating, but luckily no costly, experiences with PayPal, I started sending them complaints through their on-line access. They never replied even once. Then I requested they cancel my account. They never replied to that, either. Fortunately, the card for the account expired. For that, they sent me multiple messages. I never responded to them. Tit for tat.

    With Apple, I have become increasingly alarmed at their, “My way or the highway” attitude and total disdain for individual customer. I have used Apple products since 1986, but no longer.

    When I was giving customer satisfaction seminars to corporate clients, there were only two things I insisted they actual write in their notebooks.

    “The quality of any product or service is exactly what the customer says it is.”
    “It’s always cheaper to make a customer happy than it is to make him angry.”

    Apple used to seem to understand these two things. I don’t think so now.