I'm a diehard thrifter and garage sale addict! I love the thrill of the hunt! And I love making CASH from trash so I also resell on eBay and Etsy. I share my successes to inspire you ... and my failures so you learn from my mistakes. Please join me on this wild and crazy ride of making cash from trash!

Monday, October 20, 2014

PayPal Working Capital and a Major Hack


Back in September, I noticed a blurb on my PayPal home page inviting me to apply for their Working Capital loan.  I’d seen it before but ignored it.  This time, however, I decided to look into it.

I did some research and found other sellers who have used the PayPal Working Capital loan to buy inventory – some more than once.  Once I felt comfortable that it was on the up and up, I decided to apply.  Within minutes, I had $2,000 in my PayPal account! 

It was a great opportunity because I’d just started selling on Amazon and thought it would allow me to buy merchandise in bulk for the upcoming holidays. 

Some benefits of the Working Capital loan:
  • No interest rates, but you do pay a single fixed fee.
  • The fee is based on the loan amount and the length of the loan.
  • You get to choose the loan plan that works best for you.
  • Merchants can repay the loan via a share of the sales they process through PayPal (you can also make additional payments).
  • No credit check - merchants are selected based on their PayPal sales history.

I did use some of the funds to buy merchandise for my Amazon and eBay stores, but not in the amount I thought I would.  By the end of 2014, I had not used all the money, so I “paid back” the leftover balance.  This worked out really well for me, with no problems.


But, a couple weeks after I received the loan funds, my PayPal account was hacked – and almost ALL my funds were wiped out!  This included the $2,000 loan I had just gotten from PayPal.  I really freaked out when I saw my balance was a little more than $100.  I quickly reviewed my transactions and discovered several major withdrawals that were clearly fraudulent – all in October within days of one another.  I was sick to my stomach!

I immediately called PayPal; and with the help of their rep, we identified 7 fraudulent transactions, totaling over $4,500!  One withdrawal was well over $3,000.  They even wrote little notes to themselves, pretending to be me.  Here are a couple, exactly as written:
Hi bro . Im sorry of i cant go to ur party okay ? im too busy for that . But here is my gift . Love you
Here's your allowance . Take good care there in Philippines okay . I love you .
The PayPal rep was very helpful and quickly reversed all the withdrawals.  By the end of my phone call, all the money was back in my account.  Once I got over the initial shock and anxiety, I got angry and just wanted to lash out at whoever was behind this.  But there was no point to that so I quickly put that behind me.

I believe this happened to me because I was using the same password as the one I had been using for eBay.  When eBay was compromised, I changed my eBay password but never changed my PayPal password.  Now, I use different passwords for my eBay and PayPal accounts.  I also try to check my account every day and have an email alert when payments are made.

I have to give kudos to PayPal for being part of the solution and really assisting me with this difficult situation – very quickly and without hassle.