PayPal has updated its user agreement in a way that will enable the company to place automated calls to numbers that users never directly gave it.
These new terms come into effect from July 1, as PayPal officially splits from eBay and becomes its own independent company.
The first section of PayPal’s revised user agreement for US customers reads: “You consent to receive autodialed or prerecorded calls and text messages from PayPal at any telephone number that you have provided us or that we have otherwise obtained.”
PayPal could use such irritating methods for matters regarding a customer’s account, but it might also “poll your opinions through surveys or questionnaires” and “contact you with offers and promotions.” Which sounds like spam to us.
Going back to that previous comment, the reference to numbers that PayPal has “otherwise obtained” suggests that the company may use data lists to obtain numbers that its US customers haven’t willingly supplied to the online payment company.
Of course, if the customer doesn’t agree to these new terms and conditions, they’re told that “you may close your account within the 30 day period and you will not be bound by the amended terms.”
They added: “However, in either region, PayPal will honour any customers’ requests to decline to receive marketing outreach over the phone, SMS or email. Privacy is central to the trusted relationship we have with our customers and we take this very seriously.”
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Essentially, then, PayPal isn’t offering its US customers a choice on the matter.
As The Washington Post points out, recent US legislation appears to conflict with PayPal’s new take on ‘robocalling,’ and there could be a legal challenge when these new terms come into effect on July 1.