My first Amazon ban

Introduction

Amazon is pretty consumer-friendly.  I haven’t heard of any bans except maybe if you try to have 2 FBA accounts with the same address or if you abuse their returns.  I did neither of those and got this email earlier this week, which did make me depressed for a few hours.  Here’s the email from address-verification@amazon.com:

Hello,

We encountered an issue with your account, and have removed your access to this account because the card issuer has refused to confirm your name and billing address for your visa ending in 10. You will not be able to access your account or place orders with us until we verify your information.

To resolve this issue, please allow the card issuer to grant our request, or send the information below to our secure fax line:

— A copy of your statement for the payment card used, including the billing address
— The last two digits of the payment card
— Your name, phone number, and email address

You can find our fax number on the Amazon.com Help page:
https://www.amazon.com/help/addressverification

We will convert your fax to a secure electronic image. To protect your information, we restrict access to your billing details to a team of account specialists.

Our Customer Service team can confirm that we sent this email, but they cannot view your fax or share more information about this issue.

You can expect a response from us within 24 hours of sending your fax.

If you would like us to confirm your information with the card issuer, reply to this email after you have arranged for them to grant our request.

In the meantime, please do not open new accounts because any new order that you place may be delayed. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Sincerely,

Account Specialist
http://www.amazon.com

What happened

I had bought one of those Amazon gift cards with a teddy bear and had used a giftcards.com evgc (hey, gotta liquidate them somehow since the demise of Tio.)  I replied to the email with a picture of the evgc explaining how it’s a gift card. They then told me about the whole $1 preauth and eventually restored my account.

Be careful about using evgcs. If you do charge a buck less.

  • Ksenia

    I received the same exact message on a couple of duplicate accounts that I had been using for gift card purchases on December 21st. I had been using them to make multiple purchases on Lightning deals (likely flagged for using the same credit card and billing address across the accounts). They shadow-blocked other more established accounts at login, by returning a password incorrect message. Eventually had 2/5 closed and another 2 reopened on the phone by Amazon specialists.

  • Mark Ostermann

    I reload my amazon GC account often with small left over balances from my VGC….I have never had an issue…interesting they don’t do the $1 pre auth for that too.