by Allen Williams
Recently, I was in the market for some new R-12 hoses to refurbish an older AC gauge set when I happened on an advertisement from Amazon featuring all three replacement hoses for about $17+ bucks. It seemed like a good deal except for the long delay in shipping the goods but I wasn’t in any hurry so I thought I’d sign up.
Unfortunately, I quickly discovered that Amazon.com doesn’t allow ‘guest purchases’ as does EBAY, its ‘members only’ at Amazon and your order is conditional upon membership acceptance. I received the following confirmation memo Jan 16, sent to me at our sites email address.
This was the typical automated response however, the next day I received a follow-up email which I expected to be an actual ship date but instead my ‘account’ was frozen!
Subject: Re: Your Amazon.com order cannot be shipped
On 1/16/ 12:24 PM, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
There was a problem processing your order. You will not be able to access your account or place orders with us until we confirm your information.
You can help us resolve this issue by replying to this message with the billing name, address, and phone number registered to your card. Please reply from the email address registered to your Amazon.com account.
If needed, update your information with the card issuer.
For your security, we restrict access to your billing details to a team of account specialists. Our Customer Service team cannot access these details or provide you with more information on this issue. They can only verify that we sent this request.
We ask that you not open new accounts as any order you place
may be delayed.
This makes no sense unless the real purpose of being an Amazon member is to open all of your transactions to government phishers. All the personal 'verification' needed was to PING the card in amount of $1.00 to confirm its validity otherwise the card would be rejected outright. What Amazon is really saying here is that we don't trust you to be who you claim to be without outside confirmation. That's not membership, it's abuse.
On Jan 17th, I called the company and spoke to a representative who was to ‘look into the problem.’ I told them what had happened and the lady I spoke with indicated that I had to respond with the email address that I opened the account with. Well, duh.. I DID that and they acknowledged it by responding to the ORIGINAL email address that I opened the account with!!. (Actually, I responded with both my email addresses and still received the same mind numbing response.)
So, now we know what they’re saying here is NOT the real issue. Note that I DIDN’T GIVE permission by FAX or in my telephone conversation with the AMAZON rep to verify anything with my card issuer for ANY REASON. They simply took it upon themselves to contact the bank anyway. That’s uncalled for as Amazon already had the information and acknowledged it with their reply but here’s their moronic response.
We encountered an issue with your account, and have removed your access to this account because
the card issuer has refused to confirm your name and billing address for your Visa ending in 56.
You will not be able to access your account or place orders with us until we verify your information.
To resolve this issue, please allow the card issuer to grant our request, or send the information
below to our secure fax line:
-- A copy of your statement for the payment card used, including the billing address
-- The last two digits of the payment card
-- Your name, phone number, and email address
You can find our fax number on the Amazon.com Help page:
We will convert your fax to a secure electronic image. To protect your information,
we restrict access to your billing details to a team of account specialists.
Our Customer Service team can confirm that we sent this email, but they cannot view
your fax or share more information about this issue.
You can expect a response from us within 24 hours of sending your fax.
If you would like us to confirm your information with the card issuer, reply to this email
after you have arranged for them to grant our request.
In the meantime, please do not open new accounts because any new order that you place may be
delayed. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused.
Yes, secure like YAHOO and FACEBOOK which had millions of their ‘secure’ customer records
hacked. And might they also be passing my business information along to the NSA or FBI as
BEST BUY technical people are currently doing for the FBI?
The customer rep never addressed my reply or indicated why my bank had to confirm my identity.
A few days later I got another email asking why I discontinued my account. Interestingly enough,
Amazon’s BEZOS owns the Washington Post and since I have been a written critic of that
intellectual rag, the Amazon episode begins to make a bit more sense.
And of course, we all know the ‘journalistic integrity’ of WAPO as in After the WaPost’s Latest Shot, It’s Time to Call ‘Fake News’ By Its Real Name ‘Weaponized Journalism’ My observation to the WAPO editor on instructions from Jeff Bezos for their news coverage is that company policy (written or otherwise) dictates news coverage just as it would with any other firm subsidiary. Don’t think for a moment that WAPO isn’t looking out for the Amazon billionaire’s interests.
Amazon’s request for my credit card statement is clearly ‘over the top’ and BS pure and simple.
If you can't believe I who I say I am; we can not have any meaningful business relationship. I've
purchased many things online from EBAY and other suppliers and have never experienced such a request.
There is another possibility, the company is advertising the sale of an item they don't have and won't
have available unless a sufficient number of people express interest before they order from their
China supplier. In that case you might want a verifiable customer base to motivate the Chinese.
If you’re an Amazon customer get prepared for more invasive scrutiny of your account information, and if you’re not, don’t JOIN!.