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  1. #1

    This is crossing the line of legality! (2Checkout)

    Look at this message from the 2Checkout Forums.

    They are sending their surveys out using the merchants email address!!!!!! This is CERTAINLY illegal.

    OK I got an email from one of my customers today who had hit the reply button on the email sent to him from 2CheckOut.com - his news was good and he will be ordering more of my products, which is good for me and for 2CO. That is positive news so far.

    Just one question though - why was the following text on the bottom of emails sent out in this survey?

    "Important: Please note, this transaction will appear as a charge from "2CheckOut Inc" on your credit card statement."

    From what I know from dealing with people I know I can expect some to get back to me wanting to know what they have been charged for.

    Actually two questions - why did 2CO send the emails to customers as though it had come from me? I do not like that part either.

    Anyway the results of this remain to be seen - no point crying over spilt milk - but if I get abuse because of the text at the bottom of the email and the page where the link takes people to I will forward them to 2CO.

    I have a good relationship with my customers and am in email contact with them regularly. I am sure many found it unusual that they received a formal email from me with no greetings as usual. I really think 2CO should not have used my email address for this survey.
    Ouch! Where is the Heart Attack smily when I need it????

    <- Thats the closest I could get.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
    Posts
    4,962
    Its not illegal... Your customers are actually their customers.... They can do what they want with them...
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  3. #3
    They are forging the email header to say it was sent from your email address!!!! This is illegal and they can easily be sued for it.

    Take a minute to read the message before commenting.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
    Posts
    4,962
    I've already read it all.. I use 2checkout, I've read the freaking other thread here.. That you should have replied to instead of making a new one

    Its not illegal..

    If you don't like what their doing, then go either to another 3rd praty proccessor, or get a real merchent account...


    http://www.webhostingtalk.com/showth...threadid=56700
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  5. #5
    Yes it is illegal to pretend you are another party, then to contact their clients representing yourself as them.

    If they sent the survey as 2checkout, then it would be fine. But sending it while forging email headers to make it appear that it came from the merchants personal email account is illegal.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
    Posts
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    What the hell is so wrong with a company polling their custmers??

    Are you pissing people off? If not, then what are you worried about?? I personally think its a great idea to poll the customers, hell saves me the hassle of having todo it..
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  7. #7

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
    Posts
    4,962
    So its illegal when you click the send to friend button and this forum sends your friend an email with your email address as the sender???

    They are sending the email on behalf of you, just as you signed up with 2checkout, if you don't like what they are doing, you have the choice to leave.....
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  9. #9
    If you authorize it, it is legal. If they do not ask you, and on their own start emailing your customers, claiming the email is coming from you - then that is illegal.

    I'm surprised you don't see this obvious point.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
    Posts
    4,962
    Originally posted by RandyD
    I'm surprised you don't see this obvious point.

    You authorized them todo what they want when you signed up and started using them....


    And I'm surprised you care??? I don't care if they contact our customers, hell I don't give a damn if they send the email saying its from the damn pope...

    If you don't like the the 2checkout wishes to run their business, you have all right to take your business else where...


    From the 2CO TOS:
    Client assumes full responsibility for your decision to use 2Checkout.com affiliated services.

    Cancellation
    Client may close their account with 2Checkout.com at any time.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Posts
    416
    Just my two cents here, Randy, before you start professing your knowledge of law, you might actually want to contact a lawyer. I do not claim to be one, but I have great confidence you are wrong.

    If you have a problem with 2Checkout, go ahead and email them about their policy, as it is their policy, not this forums. Personally, I see nothing wrong in what they are doing, as in fact your customers using the 2Checkout system are really 2Checkouts.

    But thats just me and my 2 cents. No lawyer here, and I assume your knowledge of internet law is limited also.

  12. #12
    You authorized them todo what they want when you signed up and started using them....
    This is not at all true. Simply by signing up for their services you do not authorize them to represent themselves as you. This is no different then them calling up your customers and saying, "Hi, this is prohacker speaking." Do you seriously think their terms of service allows this? Go back and read it and show us where any such thing is stated.

    And I'm surprised you care??? I don't care if they contact our customers, hell I don't give a damn if they send the email saying its from the damn pope...
    Its not whether I care or not, but whether it is legal, which it is not. Companies have to follow certain laws. You as an individual may be able to get away with forging an email header, but a company will not, as they are an easy target for law suits.

    If you don't like the the 2checkout wishes to run their business, you have all right to take your business else where...
    Every company must act according to the law. If they misrepresent themselves as me or you without our authorization, they are breaking the law and can be held liable for any damages they have done to your name or business.

  13. #13
    Personally, I see nothing wrong in what they are doing, as in fact your customers using the 2Checkout system are really 2Checkouts.
    What does that have to do with them claiming to be me?! Just as I can't write to my customers forging a 2checkout email header, they cannot do the same with others.

    If I sent an email to my customers with the from header saying "from [email protected]", they can sue me. And if they do the same with others, others can sue them. It has nothing to do with whose customers they are.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
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    I think you need to go back and study the law some more..


    Private Investigators missrepresent themselves all them time, they can say what ever they want, as long as they aren't saying they are the police, or an employee of the goverment....
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
    Posts
    4,962
    BTW: You keep ranting and raving its against the law....

    I gotta go for about an hour, so that should give you plenty of time to find the exact law that says you can't do what 2checkout does and what bounty hunters and PIs do...
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  16. #16
    Private Investigators missrepresent themselves all them time, they can say what ever they want, as long as they aren't saying they are the police, or an employee of the goverment....
    They cannot represent themselves as another real company or individual.

    Maybe I will start representing myself as prohacker. I can send emails to all your clients, and of course it is fully legal according to you.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
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    I'm still waiting for you to show us the law.....
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  18. #18
    Like I'm waiting for you to show me 2Checkout's terms of service where they say they will contact others claiming to be you.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Dayton, Ohio
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    Client shall at all times have the ability to respond promptly to inquiries from 2CheckOut.com on behalf of Customers
    I haven't bought anything though 2co but I'm sure the TOS works for all for their clients...

    Now where is that law????
    -Mat Sumpter
    Director, Product Engagement
    Penton Media

  20. #20
    California Penal Code section 529 prohibits impersonating a real person. There are similar laws in every state. Now I gotta go for an hour or two. In the meantime you can get a clue.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    1,316
    Wow, it seems that a lot of threads are more ...passionate, lately.
    Just a very basic thought: is 'A' forging email headers to claim to be 'B' legal?

    Regards,
    -Chris..
    http://www.voilaweb.com - the Social Internet Toolbox.

  22. #22
    California Penal Code:
    529. Every person who falsely personates another in either his
    private or official capacity, and in such assumed character either:
    1. Becomes bail or surety for any party in any proceeding
    whatever, before any court or officer authorized to take such bail or
    surety;
    2. Verifies, publishes, acknowledges, or proves, in the name of
    another person, any written instrument, with intent that the same may
    be recorded, delivered, or used as true; or,
    3. Does any other act whereby, if done by the person falsely
    personated, he might, in any event, become liable to any suit or
    prosecution, or to pay any sum of money, or to incur any charge,
    forfeiture, or penalty, or whereby any benefit might accrue to the
    party personating, or to any other person;
    Is punishable by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars
    ($10,000), or by imprisonment in the state prison, or in a county
    jail not exceeding one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Boston MA
    Posts
    245
    I have to agree with Randy on this. What if one of his customers decided to sue for spam. He would be help liable as it looks as if the email came from him direct. 2checkout should be held liable for this. Randy take this further and speak with an attorney.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Posts
    309

    I agree with Randy too!

    I agree with Randy too!

  25. #25
    Originally posted by NixHosting
    I have to agree with Randy on this. What if one of his customers decided to sue for spam. He would be help liable as it looks as if the email came from him direct.
    First, 2checkout's TOS most likely addresses the issue.

    Second, Randy would NOT be responsible. The plaintiff would bear the burden of proof, and an e-mail with his address on it DOES NOT constitute proof. An investigation of the message headers would show that it originated from 2checkout's system.

    Besides, a follow-up e-mail to an order that was willingly placed by a customer DOES NOT even meet the defintion of UCE...

    If Randy doesn't like it, he should get a real merchant account and quit with the third party stuff. Then there would be no concern whatsoever.
    I thank my Lord for all His wonderful blessings.

  26. #26
    "2. Verifies, publishes, acknowledges, or proves, in the name of
    another person, any written instrument, with intent that the same may be recorded, delivered, or used as true;"

    What they did remains illegal. It is illegal to impersonate a real person.

  27. #27
    By the way, just the fact that the customer thinks the merchant has spammed him is already a damage to the reputation of one's business. It is not required that one need to be sued for sending the spam for damages to exist.

  28. #28
    It is completely illegal in the same way that a TV Show publishing you or your likeness without your approval is illegal. Your character, you and your business are copyrighted to you, simple as that.

    Any dissemination of the brand that is you is entirely illegal under numerous laws in every country. Of course it is illegal to impersonate another person and do business as that individual or entity.
    ::: Jeremy C. Wright :::
    http://www.ensight.org

  29. #29
    First, 2checkout's TOS most likely addresses the issue.
    People seem to assume a lot, but no one has shown anything form 2Checkout's terms of service that says they will impersonate the merchants by sending survey emails under the merchant's personal email addresses.

  30. #30
    Originally posted by RandyD
    [BWhat they did remains illegal.[/B]
    It does not, if their TOS -- the TOS you agreed to -- grants them permission to do so. If you believe it's illegal, then SUE THEM in civil court or seek to have them criminally prosecuted. Unfortunatley for you:

    1) No prosecutor will prosecute the case;

    2) No attorney would take the case;

    3) If you pursue it on your own in civil court, you will not prevail.

    Even if you DID prevail, which you wouldn't, your damages would be negligible since these customers are 2checkout customers and NOT YOURS. You would recover nothing more than whatever cost you paid to sign up for their service ($49 I believe).

    Speaking as someone who has studied law, your case has no merit.
    I thank my Lord for all His wonderful blessings.

  31. #31
    Originally posted by Jeremy W.
    Of course it is illegal to impersonate another person and do business as that individual or entity.
    2checkout is not doing business as someone else. It is 2checkout's business, not Randy's. All you need to do to determine that is to look at the checkout screen and you'll clearly see that every customer is a customer of 2checkout.

    Here's your answer: ask whose name appears on the charge.
    I thank my Lord for all His wonderful blessings.

  32. #32
    Even if you DID prevail, which you wouldn't, your damages would be negligible since these customers are 2checkout customers and NOT YOURS.
    People keep saying they are their customers, but that is irrelevant. They are impersonating you. Whether the customers are theirs or not doesn't matter. If I start calling people saying I'm you, I am breaking the law and can be sentenced to one year in prison and a $10,000 fine in the state of California.

  33. #33
    Of course it matters. If a contract is illegal, that specific section falls apart, which is why all contracts have a clause which goes something like:

    Should any part or whole of this contract be proved unlawful in an area of appropriate jurisdiction, every area, notwithstanding those in contention, shall continue to stand regardless of the outcome thereof.
    Contracts are illegal all the time. Put it this way, if Enron had had Anderson sign a contract to shred illegal documents, and Anderson had signed and then defaulted they would:

    1. Have had to pay the cancellation fee, regardless, unless a judge chose to waive it (which he could)
    2. Be able to sue Enron

    It's really simple, it's called Good Faith laws. If a company knowingly "pulls the wool" over the eyes of another company, there is actino which can be taken.
    ::: Jeremy C. Wright :::
    http://www.ensight.org

  34. #34
    Sending e-mails "as" you, but really being from 2CO, is deceptive business practices and cause for civil action on both the civil and federal level. If you have enough people you know that have the same problem, approach an attorney.

  35. #35
    Originally posted by hostpath.com


    2checkout is not doing business as someone else. It is 2checkout's business, not Randy's. All you need to do to determine that is to look at the checkout screen and you'll clearly see that every customer is a customer of 2checkout.

    Here's your answer: ask whose name appears on the charge.
    As Randy is saying, he isn't concerned about 2Checkout contacting the customers. They are spoofing his email address.

    Forget about who's customers they are. Nobody is arguing that point at all (except you) and it really doesn't have any bearing.

    They are sending an email as if it was from him. That is the issue at hand. If they were simply contacting them, that wouldn't be a problem.
    ::: Jeremy C. Wright :::
    http://www.ensight.org

  36. #36
    2checkout is not doing business as someone else.
    I can only conclude you haven't read the thread through. 2checkout is sending survey emails, forging the from header to say it is coming from the merchants personal email addresses (not from 2checkout). They are impersonating these individuals and misleading the customers (whose customers does not matter at all).

  37. #37
    When asked why 2checkout was spoofing the from header and impersonating the merchants, one of their employees replied in their forums:

    "Regarding your other question: Many of the anti-survey posts in here included comments about 2checkout.com's invisibility being important to them. They don't want it to appear as if they have a 'babysitter" monitoring their sales which is why the survey was sent out as it was. "

    In other words, they admit they have spoofed the email headers, and they never consulted the merchants to get their permissions.


  38. #38
    I'll not argue it any further. My advice: sue away! Just remember that you're bound under the laws of Ohio, not California. Oh, and make sure that you can prove monetary damages -- otherwise your only recourse is to find someone who will prosecute them (good luck) or stop using them.
    I thank my Lord for all His wonderful blessings.

  39. #39
    If it's a federal law (which impersonation of character is) then it doesn't really matter. I would be very surprised if Ohio didn't have their own such laws anyways. Otherwise, I could use your signature.
    ::: Jeremy C. Wright :::
    http://www.ensight.org

  40. #40
    Originally posted by Jeremy W.
    If it's a federal law (which impersonation of character is) then it doesn't really matter. I would be very surprised if Ohio didn't have their own such laws anyways. Otherwise, I could use your signature.
    Like I said, it all depends on the TOS which I haven't been provided. 2checkout merchants may have granted them the right to use their e-mail address when they signed up. If so, no case.
    I thank my Lord for all His wonderful blessings.

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