Just a little catching up post, which I was going to post on Monday, but I was too tired!
Monday... hmm... I am never keen on a Monday morning. It's full of jobs and obligations, which is never what you really want just after the weekend (especially when the weekend was spent in Wiltshire at a party!). Still, I get on with it and it means I get the week of to a busy start (so it can only get better etc etc..).
This Monday morning, I switched on my laptop at about 8:30am, as usual, to check there were no important e-mails or shop orders to deal with before I went out.
There were three e-mails from Paypal. The first two were at 03:28 and 03:31, two invoices from the same seller, for £173 and £102.
Now, I may occasionally have problems sleeping, but I'm not in the habit of online shopping at 3am, so I was obviously worried - especially as the delivery address was not my own.
Luckily, the third e-mail was from Paypal's Security dept. Their computer system had picked up the descrepancy with the delivery address and had automatically frozen my account, to prevent any further use.
I spent the next two hours online and on the phone, trying to speak to Paypal and sort it out. I had to get my full bank/credit card information and enter that at various points in the process, so they knew it was really me. Then I had to change all my pc passwords. Paypal think the problem was caused by a Spyware virus on our computer.
I ran our virus and security software on both my laptop and the main desktop pc. The laptop said there were no descrepancies, but the PC showed that it had picked up some problem files and removed them.
Of course, I had used the main pc to reset all my passwords - so I then had to do it all over again. But I'm fairly happy that our computers are now virus-free. I think we need a review of our anti-virus software - whether it's adequate and also how often we run virus checks. I believe the virus was picked up very recently, but I can't be sure - it has been a while since I used the main pc to login to Paypal...
However, I am so pleased with the efficiency of Paypal's systems. They immediately stopped my account. The immediately contacted me about it. It took a little while to get through on the phone (I could've e-mailed them, but I wasn't sure about that under the circumstances - I preferred to talk to a "real person", so I waited in their queue). However, once I got through, they could not have been more helpful and informative. Everything was explained carefully, the chap I spoke to listened to what I said and came up with sensible ideas about the cause of the problem. I was told how to deal with my side of the issue and that they would re-claim my money and automatically put it back into my bank account within 5 days (at most). Once I had gone through their security checks and reset my password, the account was put straight back online, so I could use it again. They even sent an e-mail to confirm that all was now back to normal.
So, I am pleased with Paypal. Just for once, a company I trust with my money has delivered on their promises. They have kept my details secure, so I don't have to cancel any bank cards or accounts - only my Paypal password and e-mail password needed to be changed. They handled all the rest for me. The hacker/cheat/thief/whatever had no access to my account details, as the Paypal system never displays the whole account number or address etc. Therefore, once I had changed my password, they couldn't use the account again.
Hopefully my pc and laptop are now virus-free and we'll be able to avoid another problem like this ever happening again. It was scary - but because it was Paypal, my money was safe and so was my bank information.
I'd recommend using Paypal for as many online transactions as possible. It seems to be a very secure way to pay or get payments sent. They have various guarantees in place and it appears that these actually Mean Something (just for a change!). Paypal is definitely My Pal!