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Old 22nd February 2020, 15:20   #1
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Default Problems creating an Amazon business account

November 2019:

Friend of mine is a tailor, if you've used any ViaTerra products, chances are good that he made them.

He wanted to sell some school/travel bags he'd manufactured on Amazon. Amazon had contacted him via a third-party called Ecommerce, and their representative Manisha had set everything up for him.

Problem was that his store wasn't launching, and he needed my help with that. The error I could see was:

"There's an existing account with the same GST details."

I contacted Amazon Support, and asked them how this was possible. We could obviously provide proof of GST ownership, by how could they have let someone else open an account with someone else's GST info?

They had no answer to any of my questions, always sent the same auto-reply:

"There's an existing account with the same GST details. Please log into that account and send termination request before new one will be opened."

No amount of shouting at them that this is their fault, and we don't own the first account helped.

December 2019:

By this time I was convinced that Amazon customer service only employed 6 year old kids, there was no other explanation for this level of incompetence.

We still kept trying to push them, and they suddenly decided that the best thing to do would be to send us the email address of the other seller account.

They sent us the email ID, and asked us to contact them. They clearly couldn't be bothered to do their job.

January 2020:

I sent emails to the address, but obviously nobody is going to try to nuke their account just because a random email tells them to.

We kept pushing Amazon, more out of a sense of shock than any hope of a solution. It was just unbelievable that one of the biggest companies on this planet survived on such incompetence.

But the ride had just begun.

On one of the phone calls, after the guy on the other end ran out of already non-existent arguments, he flatly told us to hack into the other guy's seller account and delete it.

I'll repeat, an Amazon Seller customer care executive told us, on a phone call, that you should hack into someone else's Amazon Seller account and delete the said account.

He was even nice enough to show us the ropes, took us to the login page, and said we should maybe experiment with the Forgot Password section.

The natural problem that he instantly encountered was 2 factor authentication, and we pointed out that apart from this thing being entirely insane, we couldn't possibly expect to engineer both the password AND the OTP out of thin air.

A few days later, we got another email, with the phone number of the other guy's account.

February 2020:

We had some small doubts by this point, that should we even want to do business with a company that actively encourages its users to hack each other, and ostensibly provides all the information that's required to do so.

But we decided to carry on, and contacted the other account owner. He was a perfectly nice chap, but obviously skeptical of our story. We did manage to convince him that yes, in spite of all the red flags and security implications, Amazon did provide his email and phone number to us.

He was nice enough to log into his account, and send me a photo of his account section.

The GST was completely different, but he was using the exact same PAN card as us.

A few more questions later, we realized that his account was also setup by Ecommerce, the Amazon third-party helpers. The person who setup his account? Manisha.

Now we had some understanding of the problem, we contacted Amazon again. Told them that it was not a GST problem, but PAN problem, and it was their own third-party that had created it from the start, using someone else's PAN in a different account.

I even changed our PAN to something different, just to remove any semblance of a problem.

Unsurprisingly, none of that worked, and they said that's not their concern, and we would still need to log into the first account and delete it.

The other person is, shockingly, not happy letting us TeamViewer into his laptop and delete his account, and he isn't able to reach Amazon support himself. When I tell Amazon support to call him, they refuse, saying that he must initiate the request.

Would anybody have any ideas what can be done in this almost comically absurd situation?


Just to clarify, answers should not include hacking/social-engineering tips
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Old 24th February 2020, 08:21   #2
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Default Re: Problems creating an Amazon business account

Thread moved from the Assembly Line to the Shifting Gears Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 24th February 2020, 09:12   #3
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Default Re: Problems creating an Amazon business account

I faced a similar problem with Amazon pay. Followed up without vain for a good two months and no one from customer care could resolve the issue.

As a last resort, I sent an email to Jeff Bezos and Voila! I got a call within 24 hours from someone speaking on behalf of Jeff. They fixed it within two days.
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Old 24th February 2020, 10:25   #4
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Default Re: Problems creating an Amazon business account

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiderZone View Post
November 2019:

Friend of mine is a tailor...
I am not a seller in Amazon so have limited experience with it.

What has happened, i think, is that someone is using your GST / PAN number in amazon and amazon has no way to verify it. Even though the GST number belongs to you , someone registered it first. No idea how. I would suggest that instead of trying all tactics with Amazon, you can approach the GST council and tell them of what is happening. These companies usually sit up once they receive notice from GST council.

Last edited by srini1785 : 24th February 2020 at 10:27.
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Old 24th February 2020, 10:34   #5
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Default Re: Problems creating an Amazon business account

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiderZone View Post
Just to clarify, answers should not include hacking/social-engineering tips
Not just amazon, but this problem is dime a dozen in many places where things are "automated". Unlike other business or places where someone takes the pains to verify the GST number of their client / partners / vendors etc, amazon just employs a bunch of kids to just check if the GST number inputted and the one in the proof attached is same.

Some people (agencies like the one Manisha is from), will cut corners and do things on behalf of the customer thereby causing problems. They just have a target of xx number of onboarding accounts.

This is a serious issue, and I would say first order something from that seller and see what GST number you get. As PAN is liked with GST, you should be able to make that out as well. If the invoice looks all well, you can proceed to the next step, else if something is fishy, complain to the GST council.

If this is a 100% Amazon problem, you should email to jeff@amazon.com. I have emailed him and someone from his team did reach out to me and sorted my issue.

If the person is very much willing to still deal with Amazon as a portal, ask him to register a new company with a fresh GST number. This would be the fastest way to get a seller account on amazon.

And please ask him to setup this account himself. The process is self explanatory. If there is a doubt, please post here, will try my best to answer it + I'm sure other members of Team-BHP would pitch in.

Last edited by blackwasp : 24th February 2020 at 10:37.
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Old 24th February 2020, 11:34   #6
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Default Re: Problems creating an Amazon business account

Thanks a ton guys! That's exactly what I was looking for, didn't know about the jeff@amazon.com thing. If there's one thing I'm good at, it's irritating people into action with my writing
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Old 24th February 2020, 11:42   #7
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Default Re: Problems creating an Amazon business account

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiderZone View Post
Thanks a ton guys! That's exactly what I was looking for, didn't know about the jeff@amazon.com thing. If there's one thing I'm good at, it's irritating people into action with my writing
This should work for sure; also might help if someone is able to source Amazon India CEO's email ID. But please do share updates if and when your friend gets a resolution.

We have done this in the past with Reliance broadband and Samsung consumer good issues; figuring out CXO level email ids as a last option and shooting a detailed mail to them with past conversation proofs; and voila the local team follows-up with earnest to close the issue with proper resolution.
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