Wednesday, January 7, 2015

How to never get suspended again from Paypal or eBay


So if you use eBay or PayPal, then this guide is for you.
If you're receiving money on PayPal, and somehow, your PayPal account ends up limited, then you will find this useful.
If you're getting auctions delisted and your eBay accounts are getting constantly banned, then make sure to read this.
And if you have no idea what eBay or PayPal is, you're lucky. Perhaps read this anyway, it might be entertaining.

My Story

So I've been personally using eBay and PayPal for years and years now. I suppose by now, you can call me a veteran. I have battle-scars to prove with these two companies, countless account limitations, piles of frozen money. When I got another $X,XXX stuck in an account limited just 2 days ago, it dawned onto me (other than the fact that this really sucks), that a lot of other people are probably in the same position that I am. So at that moment, I decided that I was going to write the "Ultimate Safety Guide for eBay and PayPal", so that I could help out the hundreds of other people facing the same issues as me.

This was me after my account was limited for the nth time.

For many people and myself personally, it's a love-hate relationship with eBay and PayPal. Damned if you do, damned if you don't - at the end of the day, you're going to need them one way or another. I've spent quite some time researching some alternatives and there really isn't much as far as substitutes go, so the best way to really deal with the issue is to educate yourself on how to use these services responsibly so that you don't run into problems as often (I say as often because it would be unrealistic to eliminate problems completely).

This guide is going to be split into 3 pieces. It is as follows:
1. How to go stealth on eBay and PayPal
2. Safety Guide for PayPal - How to use PayPal without getting limited
3. Safety Guide for eBay - How to use eBay without getting suspended
My goal in this guide was to teach you some common suspension issues so that it’ll save you a lot of stress and frustration in the long run.

Basic Stealth Information for eBay and PayPal

With every account, you need to do the following things:
1. Different IP
2. Different user account on your computer (you can create new ones from the control panel)
3. Don't mix and match different accounts, it will link them together and all will get banned.

How to change your IP if you're in the United States or Canada:

To do this, log into your router (if you have a router) at or or (depending on your router), and manually change your MAC address (a couple digits is fine), and save the settings. Afterwards, turn off your router and your cable modem for 10 minutes and turn them back on. Use to check that your IP address has changed.

• Go to to check your current IP address
• Log into your router
• Change the last 3-4 digits on your MAC address (should be an option inside the router)
• Save changes, and cut the power to your router and your cable modem
• Start them up again 10 minutes later
• You should have a new IP address now
• Check at to confirm that IP address has changed

Safety Guide for PayPal

How to use PayPal without getting limited

If you want to learn how to prevent getting suspended on PayPal, you're going tohave to first understand a little bit about how it works. First off, PayPal limits accounts with suspicious or "high-risk" activity in order to prevent losses. The way it does this is by robots that are trained to identify certain behavior - certain triggers cause them to freeze up accounts.

Now, here's the thing - they use robots to monitor your accounts. Since there are millions of PayPal accounts and thousands of transactions happening at every second, it is very unrealistic for them to have a big room of people monitoring every little activity. So these is essentially what happens in a nutshell when a limitation occurs.

Suspicious activity being done --> Robot picks up on the suspicious activity and triggers limitation --> PayPal asks for additional information --> PayPal human employee reviews information to reinstate your account or permanently limit it.
But here's the good thing about robots - they're actually very predictable. If you can learn what these triggers limitations, you can avoid them like land mines. So without further delay, let's start learning some of the types of behaviors thatcause limitations.

Site Owners: Before you attach a new stealth PayPal to your website, READ THIS FIRST.

If you’ve had a PayPal attached to your website before and it gets limited, PayPal then blacklists your domain name from ever using PayPal again. So if you try toattach a new stealth account directly to your site, you’ll get banned again. Luckily, there is a solution.

Solution: If you use a third-party checkout tool that uses PayPal you’ll be able to accept PayPal without fear of being limited. Another thing that you can use is host the checkout on a different domain name so that the PayPal doesn’t see it. I’ve seen some people manually invoice their customers using PayPal too.

0. Always know your stealth basics

Learn how to access stealth accounts without getting limited. That means no proxies, no IP's that change every 2 seconds (so no TOR or HMA).

Step 1 - Know your basics!

Here are some of the most common mistakes committed:
a. Use proxies, HMA, TOR, or any of those "IP hiding softwares". eBay and PayPal have blacklisted these IPs'. If you use them, you will get banned, simple as that.
b. Not changing your user account between different PayPal or eBay accounts.
The exception is if you use a VPS (remote computer) as the files are separated automatically then.

a. Change your IP legitimately through your cable or DSL company. Or even easier, just buy a windows-based VPS with an IP in the same country as your PayPal or eBay.
b. Go to your control panel, create a separate user for your new PayPal or eBay account. Use your PayPal and eBay exclusively just on that user account. Even easier, just buy a windows-based VPS with an IP in the same country as your PayPal or eBay.

1. Moving money too fast

Cause: One of the most common ways to get an account suspended is by moving money too fast. Let me give you an example.
Let's just say that you received $200 right. Then 5 minutes later you try sending that $50 to someone else or try to buy something with it. Boom, your account gets limited. In PayPal's eyes, the reason why they limited you is that when you move money too fast, it looks suspicious, so they limit your account and stop you dead in the tracks.

So it applies to:
Receive money --> send money
Receive money --> withdraw money

Solution: When you receive money in your PayPal account, let it sit in there for 2-3 days before you try spending it, withdrawing it, or doing anything with your money.

2. Taking in too much money

Cause: The second most common way to get an account suspended is by taking in too much money at one time. Look at it from PayPal's stand-point. If a guy that doesn't have an established history of receiving large amounts of money suddenly starts getting hundreds of dollars at one time, it looks pretty suspicious. Don't be the guy that receives too much money at one time, or you'll get PayPal limiting you and asking you for personal details.

Solution: So how much money is too much? On a newer account, start off by taking payments less than or around $100 and don't let the total balance on the account get above $500. If the money gets near $500, wait a couple days and withdraw it or send it to another account. Of course, when your stealth account gets older, you can start getting larger amounts of money, but if you really want to be safe, that's the general guideline you should follow. Now if you need to receive more money than that, just use multiple stealth accounts to break the payments up.

Another potential outcome if you take in money too fast is that they will ask you for social security information in order to make sure you're properly taxed. Now PayPal quotes that this number is something like 200 transactions of $20,000 a year, whichever comes first. However, if you come out of the gate taking in a lot of money, they'll ask you for social security much sooner. So the best way to combat this is to just receive money through different accounts so the funds are more dispersed.

3. Spending/Withdrawing Exact Amounts of Money/Not leaving any money left in PayPal

Cause: Let's just say that you have $600 in your PayPal balance. If you try to go ahead and withdraw $600, you'll get limited. Always try to leave some money in PayPal, at least 10% (don't make it exact). When you withdraw like all your balance, it makes PayPal think that you're robbing the bank and skipping town. That means it's suspicious, so don't do this.

Solution: Always try to leave some money in PayPal (at least 10%). So for example, if you're withdrawing $600, leave like 60-70 dollars in there, don't withdraw everything. You'd be surprised how many people get limited by this sort of problem.

4. Error: When you try to send money, and get this message: "Add funds in your PayPal before sending money" when you do have money in the available balance

Cause: When you try to move money too fast on a relatively new PayPal account. PayPal has this this filter that prevents you from sending out money. If you have a relatively new account and get this message, your account is under a soft review. However, don't freak out, because chances are, if you don't do anything else that's suspicious during this time, they'll usually release the balance in a couple of days.

Solution: When you get this message, don't try to send money out over and over again. Just leave the balance for a week and come back to try to send it again. It could last up to 21 days, so try again here and there. Most of the time, it's resolved after a couple of days.

5. Ask for "identity verification" through phone call.

If this happens, just press cancel, and they will let you confirm other information, specifically your full bank account numbers. After you enter this, your account will go back to normal status.

Part 3: Safety Guide for eBay - How to not get Limited

Using eBay without getting suspended is very similar to using PayPal without getting limited. This shouldn't be very surprising because PayPal is owned by eBay. The only thing that differs really is the function. eBay is used to buy and sell items, PayPal is used to send and receive money. So let's get started with the most common suspensions on eBay.

1. MC999 Suspension - When you're a relatively new user and you get this notice when you're trying to list your first item.

So you just got an account, and you list your first item. After 12-24 hours later, your item gets taken down and they give you this notice when you log into your account. However, don't panic, because this is relatively common - about 25% of new accounts get this the first time that they list.

Solution: Within 48 hours of getting this notice, call eBay up directly at their phone number. I believe it's 1-866-877-3229. Talk to the customer service representative and ask them why your account got limited. Then answer some questions and confirm account details with them. The questions that they're going to ask will go something like this:

First, they will transfer you to an account specialist.
This account specialist is going to ask you the following questions:
Is this your own item (respond yes, and nod your head)
Is somebody helping you with listing (respond no, and shake your head)
Are you drop shipping the item or have it in your possession (tell them that it's in your possession. do NOT let them know you're drop shipping, even if you actually are).

And that should be it. Then they'll take 2-3 minutes to review your account, and give you 3 possible responses:

Possible response #1: If you listed an item that is relatively low risk (non-branded or a brand that's not commonly counterfeited), then they'll tell you that they've unlimited your account and you're ready to list again.

Possible response #2: If you listed an item that is pretty high risk (a brand that is commonly counterfeited and protected by their VERO - verified rights owner program), then they will tell you that you're selling items that are too risky, and that they cannot do business with you anymore. At this point, they will permanently suspend your account.

Possible response #3: If you list an item that is high risk, they will ask for you to verify your identity with the account by faxing in your ID and some personal information. Of course, if you have a stealth account, chances are you won't be able to provide this documentation.

This brings me to the second most common suspension reason.

2. You're selling items that are too high risk!

One of the most common mistakes when it comes to selling on eBay is that people think they can sell just about anything. This couldn't be further from the truth. On eBay, items are either high risk or low risk. It all depends on the brand name of the item. Brands like Dre Beats are high risk whereas other brands like Abercrombie and Fitch are low risk. If you list a high risk item, your item will get delisted from eBay and you'll get suspended (if you're new, you'll get suspended permanently. If you're a veteran, they'll put one strike on your account - you can get three strikes before getting perm-banned).

Solution: Know which items are high risk and which ones are low risk. The only definitive way is to just go ahead and list some items and mark down which ones get removed and which ones don't. 

1 comment:

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