Smokes online
April 13, 2006 1:21 PM   Subscribe

Ordering smokes online.. My SO was going to use my bank account to order smokes online, no credit cards accepted.

Odering smokes online..
My SO was going to use my bank account to order smokes online, no credit cards accepted. It got to the part about account number and they wanted SS number or (and) drivers license. I said HELL NO. I was fearing identity theft of the easiest variety. She was wondering why I took such a stand. Am I wrong?
posted by raildr to Society & Culture (15 answers total)
no. sounds really suspicious to me. I have never been asked that info before, except from a phisher.
posted by lester at 1:25 PM on April 13, 2006

Move away from the computer...
posted by Gungho at 1:29 PM on April 13, 2006

Uh, yeah, you need to make sure and not give all your pertinent info to shady online tobacco shops.
posted by bshort at 1:32 PM on April 13, 2006

Does your SO have a bank account of her own she might want to try this with? If so, why didn't she? If not, it might explain her confusion at the concept of getting ripped the fuck off.
posted by jon_kill at 1:41 PM on April 13, 2006

I would never give either of these pieces of information in any online transaction. b1tr0t is right, these places are shady, they're already frequently breaking several laws, at which point giving them sensitive personal information is just foolish.

You should also be aware that increasing numbers of states are going after online cigarette buyers for tax evasion. Google News shows numerous stories on how buyers are being targeted by state taxing authorities.
posted by nanojath at 1:46 PM on April 13, 2006

just echoing what everyone else has said. you did not overreact in anyway. smells like a recipe for identity theft to me as well.
posted by phil at 2:14 PM on April 13, 2006

A similar thread I started a few weeks ago trying to find a decent online smoke shop. I only got 2 replies, but my post shows samples of a few sites I checked out before just giving up. I didn't get a good vibe from any of the sellers.
posted by rolypolyman at 2:38 PM on April 13, 2006

Lots of FUD here.

Online tobacco shops no longer accept credit cards, as a rule, because the government (either the Feds or the states' attorneys general, can't recall) convinced the CC companies not to handle this business. This is why they want your bank info — most of these places accepted credit card payments before this development.

I haven't tried this myself yet, but will soon — I'm planning to ask my bank about the risks next time I visit a teller. The impression I get from anecdotal evidence and some Googling implies that the most reliable and least sketchy shops are those run from Indian reservations. Overseas/Eastern European shops I wouldn't trust, though I do know people who've successfully ordered from them. The Indians also have the strongest legal claim, and the most protection from having their customer records subpoenaed by a crusading AG, in my opinion, but I'm not a lawyer.

Most of these places will also accept plain old checks or money orders via the mail, which may be a less risky approach.
posted by IshmaelGraves at 3:07 PM on April 13, 2006

In March [2005], major credit card companies, at the urging of the National Association of Attorneys Generals and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agreed to no longer process Internet cigarette sales. [cite]
posted by IshmaelGraves at 3:10 PM on April 13, 2006

It's all about taxes...

Order from Native American sites... after you can confirm they are legit.
posted by zaelic at 4:19 PM on April 13, 2006

Tell your girlfriend that if she mails me her SSN, driver's license number, bank account and routing number, I can get her all the smokes she wants.

(You did right.)
posted by klangklangston at 4:38 PM on April 13, 2006

There was an article about online smokeshops in the NYTimes a few months ago. Basically, all the semi-legit ones disappeared and now the ones left work out of Costa Rica or similar offshore locations. I'd avoid 'em, regardless...
posted by ph00dz at 4:55 PM on April 13, 2006

I don't know about "smokes," but I've bought cigars online numerous times from Holt's. Most recently was June 2005, believe. Never had any problems with them.
posted by autojack at 5:28 PM on April 13, 2006

I ordered from an online shop for a year or so before I got the letter from the State of California demanding back taxes. At the very least you could get stuck for the taxes.
posted by phewbertie at 2:03 AM on April 14, 2006

I've done a fair number of online e-check purchases. I've never been asked for my SSN.
posted by I Love Tacos at 6:17 AM on April 14, 2006

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