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PayPal Hidden Addresses Can Result in Misdirected Shipments

A PayPal user (who is also a seller on eBay) said she discovered a problem that could lead to misdirected shipments. It’s a “buyer” issue but could also cause headaches for sellers as well.

The user, who wished to remain anonymous, said the problem stemmed from orders where a buyer added a different Ship To address after paying with PayPal. That results in PayPal adding the address into its records. “Once you enter that new address you can’t remove it from Paypal unless you call Paypal and have them remove it,” she explained.

“HIDDEN ADDRESSES are those that you enter when PayPal asks you to choose or add a shipping address. The only addresses you can edit in your account are the ones in your Profile. As a result, as we found out yesterday, this can come back to bite you.”

She made a purchase on eBay and clicked on the PAY NOW button. It took her to PayPal where she completed the payment.

“Unfortunately, and with no notice, PayPal entered a random SHIP TO address from one of the HIDDEN ADDRESSES in our account. After it was too late (when we received the ITEM SHIPPED notice from eBay) we realized that the SHIP TO address that eBay/PayPal had given the seller was an address in Washington for someone we had purchased something for several years ago and had entered as a SHIPPED TO address for that one item.”

She called PayPal and a rep said those were buyers can’t access them to delete them, “and he said that we were not the only ones having situations like this happen.”

The bottom line, she said, is that if someone has ever added a third party one-time shipping address to their account by adding it some way other than adding it to their official Profile, then they need to call PayPal and have the extra addresses removed. Otherwise, “they could end up like us having a purchase sent to someone other than us because eBay/PayPal randomly chose an address from the HIDDEN ADDRESS list.”

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.