PayPal David Marcus

PayPal Get The Marketing Opportunity of a Lifetime

PayPal, David Marcus, fraud, money, credit card,

But mostly so the PayPal President can prove a point

In what can only be considered a wonderfully ironic twist of fate, and superb marketing opportunity, PayPal President David Marcus has announced that his credit card details were stolen while on holiday and were used to fund a fraudulent spending spree.

Marcus believes that his credit card was probably skimmed at the hotel he was staying at in the UK, where it was then likely cloned and used to buy goods.

Interestingly, Marcus’ card did have an EMV chip, the standard for Europe, and so should have been protected against a most fraudulent attempts at cloning his card. However, cloning technology has moved on and it could well be done through affixing a reader onto an ATM before the card enters the reader slot. Although he did admit that it was more likely that the mag stripe was what got his card cloned, not the EMV chip – which is a strong argument for why mag stripe remains.

The situation does mirror what occurred in the US at the end of 2013, when millions of Target and Neiman Marcus customers had their information stolen due to a virus in the POS systems. While that’s spurred the US towards adopting EMV faster than they may have otherwise, PayPal’s Marcus didn’t miss an opportunity blowing his company’s horn.

Marcus pointed out that if the merchants in question accepted PayPal as a form of payment his card details would have been safe – seeing as PayPal doesn’t share card or bank account details with merchants.

Still, it’s unsurprising that the merchant in question didn’t accept PayPal as it’s rather rare to see it as a payment method in stores in the UK. No doubt this’ll be addressed soon enough when Marcus gets back to San Francisco and instructs the company to push its in-store offering further.


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