The CurrCon Java Applet displays prices on this
web page converted with today’s exchange rates into your local international currency,
e.g. Euros, US dollars, Canadian dollars, British Pounds, Indian Rupees…
CurrCon requires an up-to-date browser
and Java version 1.8, preferably 1.8.0_92.
If you can’t see the prices in your local currency,
Troubleshoot. Use Firefox for best results.
PayPal is cross between a bank, a credit card company,
an affiliate program, a shopping cart service, a smart card, digital cash and the
Western Union. You have an account which you can fill from your credit card (Visa,
MasterCard, Discover or Amex) or bank account or debit card. You can transfer money
from that account to your bank account. Other people with PayPal accounts can give
you money and you can give them money. The transaction fees are relatively low under
4.9% and $.55 per transaction. However, that means on a
$1 donation, they take over a third. You can set up a
shopping cart on your website in an afternoon. It is the simplest and most flexible
shopping cart scheme I have seen.
Buyers can transfer money to vendors in US dollars, Euros or pounds sterling.
Buyers and vendors can also transfer money to and from their bank accounts in other
currencies. You can keep separate accounts in Canadian and US dollars. People are
using PayPal to speculate in currency exchange fluctuations, or to transfer money out
of the sinking dollar into other more stable currencies.
An authorisation is permission for a delayed payment. So
for example, when you order something not in stock, you may give the vendor an
authorisation to take money out of your PayPal account in future, when he actually
ships the product. He may put a hold on your account for
the amount to ensure you have that much money when the time comes.
PayPal now publishes its fees. It has a
separate fee structure for Canada. It amounts to 4.9% +
paid by the seller, (i.e. the recipient of
the money.). You can set up a premier business account, which is more of a hassle to
set up, but has lower fees 1.9% to 2.9% +
paid by the seller, (i.e. the recipient of
the money.). The British competitor moneybookers, has considerably lower fees, but is not
accepted as widely. You might consider using it for person-to-person transfers.
Credit cards are hopelessly
inept and insecure for Internet purchases. It is only a matter of time before their
use is totally discontinued. PayPal offers a secure though costly alternative.
The big advantage of PayPal is you divulge only your email address to the
company your are paying. With a credit card, you must give them your credit card
and expiration date. They can use that to make further unauthorised charges to your
account, or sell the number on the black market. With PayPal the person you are
paying cannot take further money or change the amount.
With PayPal you can put money in escrow with an authorisation. This proves to the e vendor you have the money, but
does not let him withdraw it until he has delivered the goods.
With PayPal you have access to neutral arbitration over a disputed payment,
e.g. when you paid but goods never arrived. Similar services from credit card
companies are highly biased toward the vendors.
A fraudster cannot steal more than the contents of your PayPal account. With a
credit card, he can rack up charges often past the spending limit. PayPal is much
more secure than a credit card. With a credit card, all a fraudster needs is your
credit card number and the expiry date (something written on the card in plain
text). With PayPal a fraudster needs to know your email address and your PayPal
password. You never reveal your PayPal password to anyone and ideally never write
it down or store it in your computer unencrypted where a hacker might find it.
You can monitor the state of your PayPal account online. Further, PayPal sends
you emails any time the balance changes. If a fraud ever happened, you would know
about it right away.
When you load up your PayPal account from your bank account
they take the money out of the bank about 2 days later
then sit on it for 14+ days before putting it in your
PayPal account. They advertise 3 - 4 days. It is bad enough they pay no interest on your account without
sitting on your deposits for two weeks without interest and without giving you
access to it. Originally PayPal planned to be a free service, funded completely by
this float and by lending out the money in the accounts, the same way free travellers cheques are funded. They have almost no expenses
for a transaction. They just subtract the amount from one account and add it to
another, no more work that a typical HTML (Hypertext Markup Language)
page fetch. The only expense they have is resolution of a disputed transaction,
when the parties cannot come to an understanding with only automated
Since it takes two weeks plus to load your PayPal account up from your bank
account, it means you need to maintain a fairly hefty balance in your PayPal
account that earns no interest.
PayPal fees are pretty steep when you consider how cheap it is for them to
process the transaction and that they get to keep your balance in a bank somewhere
earning interest for them and none for you. Consider that travellers’
cheques, which require even more processing, are free. PayPal could be free and
still generate hefty profits.
PayPal is a somewhat unethical company. For example, they ask you to
participate in what appears to be anonymous surveys, but encode your identify in
the URL (Uniform Resource Locator).
PayPal must drive the homeland security people crazy. You can set up accounts
without ID and send money all over the world from people/business/organisation to
people/business/organisation. The volume of transactions must be astounding. You
can effectively launder money by buying goods online and reselling them. The high
fees and presumed transaction limit might discourage illegal use.
Phishing: Making Sure Emails Are Sent From PayPal
subject to phishing, phony emails
attempting to get your PayPal password or bank account numbers. Here are some ways to
avoid being taken.
If you receive an email and are unsure whether it is from PayPal, open a new
web browser (e.g., Internet Explorer or Netscape) and type in the following:
Don’t click on any link in an email which seems suspicious to you.
Changing your password is quite a production. The form to change it is hidden
under My Account ⇒ bank
⇒ password. They ask you to key your full bank
account. They don’t mean that. They mean your partial bank account without
the institution and transit fields. You have to type your new password twice. You
can’t just paste it in from your password generator. You have literally key
it and to make matters worse, you must type it both times blind. It took me a
couple of dozen tries to mollify PayPal. Paypal is probably your most important
password. I wrote PayPal with a number of ideas to make it easier in order to
encourage people to change their passwords more frequently.
Some spoof websites will send emails that pretend to come from PayPal to entice
you to log in at the spoof URL. Be extremely cautious of emails that direct you to
a website that asks for sensitive information.
Stay safe; don’t respond to emails asking for any of the following:
Your password and email address combination
Credit card numbers
Bank account numbers
Social security numbers
Drivers license number
First and Last Names
If you have surrendered financial or password information to a suspicious email
or website, promptly report this to the issuing institution as well as change your
password and secret answers on your PayPal account. This can be completed in the
Profile section of your account.
PayPal will never send you an email with the greeting Dear
PayPal User or "Dear PayPal Member". Emails initiated by PayPal
will address you by your first and last name, or the business name associated with
your PayPal account.
For your security, PayPal will never ask you to re-enter your
full bank account, credit, or debit card number without providing you at least the
last two digits of the number. These digits let you know that
PayPal already knows the full number and are asking you for the rest of it. Beware
of any website or email asking for these numbers for verification that does not prove that it knows the
number by providing at least the last two digits
Making Sure That Websites are Hosted by PayPal
When using the PayPal service, always ensure that the
address listed at the top of the browser is https://www.paypal.com/.
The s in https ensures that the website is secure. Even if the
contains the word PayPal, it may not be a PayPal
Look for the 'lock' symbol
appears in the lower right hand corner of the Internet Explorer browser. This
symbol indicates that it is a secure site.
Do not download attachments, software updates, or any application to your
computer via a link you received in an email. PayPal will not ask you to download
anything for your account to work.
Use a unique password for the PayPal account and change it every 30- 60 days.
The password should be one that is not used on any other site, service, or
The password should be unguessable. Use my password generator to create you a suitable one:
If you think you have received a fraudulent email including the header information
or the site’s URL, please forward the original email to email@example.com and then delete the
email from your mailbox. Never click any links or attachments in a suspicious
PayPal is not secure over public WiFi (Wireless Fidelity)
such as in a cafe. Crooks can see your password.
Setting Up PayPal On Your Own Website
Sign up with a business
account. Finding your way around the PayPal Website can be daunting. Here are some
key locations that work once you have logged in.
create a Buy
Now button. Use the encrypted form so spam harvesters will not see
your email address embedded in the generated HTML.
other PayPal logos. Sometimes the page fails to show any logos or
HTML. Try a
Twice on 2014-08-09, at different sites, when I made a
PayPal purchase, the vendor send me to PayPal to pay for the product, without taxes
or shipping, then sent me a second time with taxes and shipping included.
Don’t click pay unless everything is incorporated in a single payment or you
could be stung paying twice.
Michael Ruppert was a political activist who opposed the Iraq war. PayPal blocked
the donations to his website. This is unwarranted political interference. What
Ruppert was doing was completely legal.
Write the vendor, (paper and snail mail works better) explaining your problem.
They will often make an exception and allow you to pay by cheque or money
In Canada the credit unions let you send money via email just like PayPal via
Interac. The difference
is, you can send it direct from your account. You don’t have to wait a week or
so to transfer money to your no-interest PayPal account first. They charge the sender
a flat $1.50 fee, which is someone cheaper that PayPal
which charges the receiver. Interac has extra security. The receiver must answer a
question posed by the sender.
This is primarily of interest to vendors who want to get fancy with using PayPal to take payments. This is more of an introduction and overwiew. Believe it or not, even a book of this size just scratches the surface of the PayPal API.
Online bookstores carrying PayPal APIs: Up and Running