Amazon account created using my name/address

40 posts in this topic

So, I'm not sure if I should be worried about this or not.

 

I got a letter from Amazon Payments Europe SCA saying I owe them money for something.  No details with an order number or anything of the sort, just a demand that I pay.

 

So I contacted Amazon and after an inordinate amount of rigmarole, was informed that someone had opened an Amazon account using my name and address, but they (obviously) used a different password.  They refused to discuss the other account with me unless I could tell them the password on that account - lovely!  After getting bitchy with them they finally decided to look into it and came back with "oh well, someone opened an account using your name and address, since they used a different payment method we won't hold you accountable for the amount in arrears, we'll just close that other account" 

 

The CS guy of course claimed there was NO WAY my data was breached through any fault of amazon.  He said it was probably someone I know who decided to use my name and address (really?)

 

I find it pretty alarming that it was so easy for someone to do this, should I be worried about some kind of identity theft?  Anything I can do to protect myself from further issues?

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Report it to your local police. See if there is a cyber security department.

 

Do you have rechtschutz? An insurance that pays solicitors/lawyers. If so contact them and tell them what happened. The fact you got a demand for payment for an order that you did not make is alarm bells ringing. They log all their IP addresses etc...

 

Did you speak to Amazon with the number on the website? Sometimes there are emails like this that are phishing spoofs. Please be careful. Amazon will never normally ever ask for your password on the phone??? That is really odd!!!!

 

If it is genuine I would talk to a lawyer and report it to the police.

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Was it a lot of money? Why would someone go to all the trouble to do that for some trifling Amazon order?

 

Baffling, it is.

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I do indeed have rechschutzversicherung - good idea to contact them, thank you!  I considered police but thought they would not be interested since in the end the charges were erased (for me).  But maybe it's good to contact them anyway to have a paper trail in case it escalates :/

 

I contacted Amazon directly and securely.  Meaning I logged into my account and went through the "help" portal to have them call me.  If that was a spoof it was very very well done ;)

 

I am not completely freaking out over this as Amazon is pretty lax with letting people open multiple accounts, ship to many different addresses and that kind of thing.  But since they refused to tell me anything about the order or the spoof account at all, I can't even guess if it's someone I might know or not.  Ergo I don't know how much they might know about ME.  It's creepy mostly, but yeah, alarm bells ring.

 

@fraufruit no, it was not a lot of money!  just 39,98 + 3 eur Rücklastenschriftgelt

 

which in some ways does make it even more strange.

 

eta:  though they could have ordered a lot more in the time it took for them to send me this mahnung.

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ok now I'm amused

 

the munich police cyber unit has an online report function.  I opened it and it has a banner at the top:  Ihre ausgewählte Sprache Deutsch ist nicht verfügbar. Dieser Vorgang wird derzeit nur in der Standardspache Deutsch (Deutschland) angeboten.

 

oh dear oh dear - it doesn't exactly inspire faith in their deep knowledge of all things cyber :)

 

(or their spelling skills?)

 

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just a small update:

 

I enquired with munich police about who I should report this to, they said I should go to a station to file it.  I plan to do that tomorrow.

 

meanwhile, I looked into this business of how someone can create a spoof account like this and...it's dead simple, you just do it.  A "person" can have as many buyer and seller accounts as they wish.  Naturally I find this pretty fucked, so I talked to amazon CS about how I might "lock" my account to prevent any new account from being opened in my name.

 

Well I can't do that.  Nice eh? 

 

At least this time the rep was actually very good, she looked through the notes on my account and explained that there is now a "precendent" for misuse of my Name/Address which is logged on my legitimate account.  She said they can use this in my favor if there is any trouble in the future.  Not a great solution but it's something.  What I gleaned is that the key metric they use to determine of you're really "you" is email address, name and payment method.  Problem in Germany, of course, is that they will associate any mahnung/inkasso action with your name/physical address, which amazon does not review unless you have a problem like this.  You're basically at amazon's mercy to determine whether they believe you're name/address has been hijacked.  If they believe you, they forgive the "debt", if not...ugh.  I don't want to think about it.

 

Meanwhile I chatted with a friend who works there in dev and gave him a feature request:  allow users to lock their data so no new accounts can be opened in their names at all, or at least not without some extra verification.  

 

oh, and just as a general precaution, I recommend turning on two-step authentication to reduce the chance of someone hacking your legitimate account(s).  It's a bit buried in the account settings but it's there. Amazon makes it far too easy to change email addresses, to reset passwords and other key data that would lock you out and make YOU look even more like a fraudster, and two-step authentication helps protect against this.

 

 

 

 

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43 minutes ago, lisa13 said:

oh, and just as a general precaution, I recommend turning on two-step authentication to reduce the chance of someone hacking your legitimate account(s).  It's a bit buried in the account settings but it's there. Amazon makes it far too easy to change email addresses, to reset passwords and other key data that would lock you out and make YOU look even more like a fraudster, and two-step authentication helps protect against this.

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks for the tip, although when I looked into it they send the login verification code to you mobile phone, which I don't like at all, to easy to loose a mobile.

You certainly raised some very interesting questions, what I found particularly worrying is that Amazon would allow the setting up of an account in your name and address but obviously using a different email and different presumably bogus bank account and then shipping an order to a different address, you would have thought that would have rung some alarm bells. Even more worrying I can't help but wonder what would have happened if the scammer knew your bank and account number and used it for the bogus account. I used to run my own business and my bank details went out on every invoice.:o

The odd thing is that so far the scam was for such a small amount.

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Every time I log into Amazon US to shop, they send me a verification code per email that I must use to get in. Even when I'm over there.

 

Not so with Amazon DE.

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8 minutes ago, fraufruit said:

Every time I log into Amazon US to shop, they send me a verification code per email that I must use to get in. Even when I'm over there.

 

Not so with Amazon DE.

 

You probably have two-step authentication turned on for one but not the other. Both my US and DE accounts behave the same way and ask for a verification code.

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I never turned it on but I like it. Don't care to give any phone numbers for it, though. If I'm online shopping, I'm sitting at my PC or laptop and email is available.

 

The DE account belongs to Himself. I only use it occasionally. It is fine like it is because I can't check his email for the code.

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1 hour ago, fraufruit said:

I never turned it on but I like it. Don't care to give any phone numbers for it, though. If I'm online shopping, I'm sitting at my PC or laptop and email is available.

 

My feelings exactly, wish I could set up my Amazon.de for email verification.

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1 hour ago, keith2011 said:

Thanks for the tip, although when I looked into it they send the login verification code to you mobile phone, which I don't like at all, to easy to loose a mobile.

You certainly raised some very interesting questions, what I found particularly worrying is that Amazon would allow the setting up of an account in your name and address but obviously using a different email and different presumably bogus bank account and then shipping an order to a different address, you would have thought that would have rung some alarm bells. Even more worrying I can't help but wonder what would have happened if the scammer knew your bank and account number and used it for the bogus account. I used to run my own business and my bank details went out on every invoice.:o

The odd thing is that so far the scam was for such a small amount.

 

they offer backup authentication to a second number (I used my landline, which "spoke" the sms to me) or you can backup with their app.  The app seems to pose the same problem as the mobile number, so I went with the landline

 

I think they ordered a lot more than what I was invoiced for - the CS rep mentioned "the other orders on that account" so...

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1 hour ago, fraufruit said:

Every time I log into Amazon US to shop, they send me a verification code per email that I must use to get in. Even when I'm over there.

 

Not so with Amazon DE.

 

I get those any time I log in with a new device.  I can choose, at the time I enter the code, whether amazon should remember the device or not.  

 

eta: as far as I know, you can't turn that (email based) authentication off for unrecognized devices - I was getting those long before I turned on two-step authentication.

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10 minutes ago, keith2011 said:

 

My feelings exactly, wish I could set up my Amazon.de for email verification.

 

try clearing all cookies, or try to login with a browser you never used before, and see if it demands an authentication code (I think they give a choice between email and the mobile number on your account - you can't enter the destination) - it should.

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5 hours ago, lisa13 said:

oh, and just as a general precaution, I recommend turning on two-step authentication to reduce the chance of someone hacking your legitimate account(s).  It's a bit buried in the account settings but it's there.

 

This being the relevant item in the account settings (outlined in RED)?

 

az.jpg

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1 hour ago, HEM said:
1 hour ago, HEM said:

 

This being the relevant item in the account settings (outlined in RED)?

 

az.jpg

Just in case you were not aware but it is possible to change the language on Amazon Germany to English.

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22 hours ago, lisa13 said:

Amazon Payments Europe SCA saying I owe them money for something.

 

22 hours ago, lisa13 said:

since they used a different payment method

 

Just to help clarify, someone opened an account with your name and address, but used either a different card or bank account (not in your name) for payment method.

And, somehow lisa13 2.0 ordered a product against their payment method, it shipped without the payment method being instantly charged?  And then Amazon sent you a "letter" as in snail mail saying you owe them money?  As if the payment method hadn't been verified at time of purchase?

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yessssss, it appears so.

 

I have no idea what payment method they used that wasn't securely paid at time of shipping.  None whatsoever.  Unless they used an "empty" bank account such that the lastenschrift failed - like bouncing a check?  Maybe they used a stolen credit card that hadn't been flagged yet?  No idea.  But I can't quite swallow these as those accounts would not be associated with my name.  Maybe some kind of gift card scam?

 

The letter stated that they had already contacted me by email about this missing payment, but of course since they used not-my-email-address for the fake account, I never got that email.  Just the letter.

 

it's totally flippin' freaky.

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