Small business-owner Andi Rosenberg lost tens of thousands of dollars last year when her Shopify account was hacked.
Starting on November 23, 2020, payments from her Shopify sales began being deposited in an unknown bank account without Rosenberg’s knowledge. On her Shopify account, Rosenberg could see the daily sales being paid out. But, her bank account, which she only checks once a month, wasn’t getting any of the payouts.
On December 29, a Shopify support specialist emailed her about “detected suspicious login activity,” and she needed to confirm her bank account and identity. That’s when Rosenberg checked her own bank account and saw she was missing thousands of dollars from her Shopify sales.
She was sick to her stomach, and has been since.
She confirmed her identity and her bank account with Shopify over the course of several days via emails, which were viewed by Insider. The company eventually gave her the payouts from December 30 to January 14, which had been frozen by Shopify until she could confirm her identity and account. The payouts added up to $22,816, based on payment confirmations provided to Insider.
But she was still missing $55,656 in payouts made to the hacker’s bank account for the pay period from November 23 to December 29. She said when the Shopify account was apparently first hacked in November, she never received a notification that her bank information was changed.
“I’m a small business; you could put me out of business,” she said she told customer service on the phone. “It’s just sickening.”
Rosenberg, owner of clothing and jewelry line Hipchik, has sold her products through department stores for years. In 2018, she opened a Shopify account and loved it.
As store sales dwindled, Shopify helped her get through the pandemic, and she had her best year yet online, selling nearly $1 million of merchandise.
Since the missing payments, she says she’s spoken to Shopify’s customer service and the legal team and even reached out to company executives on LinkedIn. In an email seen by Insider, a customer service representative said the legal team could not give Rosenberg advice. The representative added that, “At this point I recommend that you proceed with private legal counsel in order to work towards recovering missing funds, and moving in a productive direction with this investigation.”
She has been in talks with outside lawyers to see if they can help get her payments back, but she’s worried about the legal fees on top of the losses she already incurred.
Insider asked if Shopify knows how frequently sellers’ accounts are hacked, what security measures are in place, and how sellers can get their money back if it’s stolen. “At Shopify, we take the privacy and security of our merchants very seriously,” a spokesperson said. “We go to great lengths to help merchants manage their accounts more securely by providing guidelines and recommendations. We recommend that all merchants enable two-factor authentication to provide a more secure login process and to help prevent unauthorized access to a merchant’s admin.”
The company did not comment on Rosenberg’s case, or answer questions as to why it took several weeks to notice suspicious logins on her account and why the company has not reimbursed her for her lost payments.
Shopify, based in Ottowa, Canada, is an e-commerce company that’s known for helping small business owners attract customers online. Fakespot analyzed Shopify, which went public in 2015, and found that about a fifth of sellers deserved a “caution” or “warning” sign for activities like selling fraudulent products or not delivering items. Shopify told Insider that it has closed thousands of stores, and it regularly implements new measures to address fraud or other violations.
Shopify sellers have also faced fraud from buyers, who order personalized products and then ask for refunds. In 2018, Shopify rolled out a prevention system to protect sellers from these fraudulent buyers, TechCrunch reported.
If you’re a seller and believe you have lost money on Shopify because of a stolen or hacked account, reach out to the reporter of this article, Natasha Dailey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
But some actions have gone beyond statements: Businesses and other entities are severing their financial connections to Trump and the Trump Organization.
In the wake of the insurrection and impeachment, some groups formerly affiliated with the Trump Organization are opting to sever ties. The Trump Organization did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
Here are all the businesses and entities that have publicly split from the Trump Organization.
SAG-AFTRA planned on holding a hearing on whether to expel Donald Trump from the labor group – but he resigned in a pointed letter.
“I write to you today regarding the so-called Disciplinary Committee hearing aimed at revoking my union membership,” Trump wrote.”Who cares!”
He went on to say he was “not familiar with your work” but that he’s proud of his own performances in movies such as “Home Alone 2” and “Zoolander” and television shows including “Saturday Night Live” and “The Apprentice.”
He closed his letter with: “I no longer wish to be associated with your union. As such, this letter is to inform you of my immediate resignation from SAG-AFTRA. You have done nothing for me.”
In a statement to The Washington Post, the Trump Organization said it was “a breach of a binding contract and they have no right to terminate the agreement.”
Trump was more upset about no longer hosting the tournament than getting impeached for a second time, The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman reported.
Deutsche Bank and Signature Bank are reportedly ending their banking services for the Trump Organization.
Bloomberg reported on Monday that both banks were severing ties. In a statement to Bloomberg, Signature said, “We believe the appropriate action would be the resignation of the president of the United States.”
According to the Bloomberg report, Trump owes Deutsche Bank over $300 million, and Signature Bank will close two personal accounts with about $5.3 million in them.
Professional Bank won’t provide services for Trump or the Trump Organization.
“Professional Bank has decided not to engage in any further business with the Trump Organization and its affiliates, and will be winding down the relationship effective immediately,” the bank said in a statement to Bloomberg on Tuesday.
Bloomberg reported Trump borrowed $11 million from the bank in May 2018 to buy a home for his sister Maryanne Trump Barry next to his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida.
The US Capitol siege by President Donald Trump supporters on Wednesday has set off a range of responses and actions from big tech companies, including deleting the infamous Trump response video and temporarily freezing Trump’s social media accounts.
Following this removal, on Thursday, YouTube announced it would give channels a “strike” if its videos violated the social media platform’s policies. Following the first strike, a channel will be banned from posting for a week. A second strike within 90 days will result in a two-week ban. The third and final strike, if done within 90 days, will result in a permanent ban.
On Thursday, Facebook went one step further and decided to freeze Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts “indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete,” Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, wrote in a post.
“His decision to use his platform to condone rather than condemn the actions of his supporters at the Capitol building has rightly disturbed people in the US and around the world,” Zuckerberg wrote. “We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great.”
“We will not amplify voices who incite racial violence and injustice by giving them free promotion on Discover,” a Snap spokesperson told Insider in June. “Racial violence and injustice have no place in our society and we stand together with all who seek peace, love, equality, and justice in America.”
“Shopify does not tolerate actions that incite violence,” a Shopify spokesperson said in a statement to Insider on Thursday. “Based on recent events, we have determined that the actions by President Donald J. Trump violate our Acceptable Use Policy, which prohibits promotion or support of organizations, platforms or people that threaten or condone violence to further a cause. As a result, we have terminated stores affiliated with President Trump.”
Twitch has also frozen Trump’s account, and will make further decisions about his account after Biden is inaugurated, The Verge reported.
On Wednesday, Twitter removed the same one-minute video that YouTube and Facebook dismissed. Shortly after, the social media platform locked Trump’s Twitter account and removed three tweets – including one with the aforementioned video – and replaced the posts with “this Tweet is no longer available” messages. As a result, Trump could either delete the tweets to gain access to his account after 12 hours or remain frozen out of his Twitter account.
On Thursday, Trump deleted the three tweets in question, and the tweets now read: “This Tweet is no longer available because it violated the Twitter Rules.” Twitter did not confirm with Insider the time the tweets were deleted, but if the original statement still holds, the 12-hour countdown until Trump has access to his Twitter account has already begun.
However, the social media platform isn’t ruling out more serious actions in the future.
“Future violations of the Twitter Rules, including our Civic Integrity or Violent Threats policies, will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account,” Twitter said in a statement.