Western Union Changing Auction Payments Name Back To BidPayDate: Wednesday, August 4, 2004
One year ago, Western Union changed the name of its BidPay online payment service to "Western Union Auction Payments." The company is changing the name back to BidPay at the end of this month. Western Union purchased BidPay in early 2001 to capture sales from eBay and other auction trading.
The major reason for this name change is to reduce confusion between the company's auction payment service and its wire-transfer service. eBay warns users not to use Western Union wire transfer for auction payments, and some users were concerned this warning might extend to the Western Union Auction Payments service, which it does not.
Western Union Auction Payments allows buyers to purchase a Western Union money order over the Internet, which Western Union Auction Payments then mails to the seller. The advantages to using the service for buyers is that because the seller gets an email from Western Union telling them the money order has been mailed, they will often send the item out sooner, rather than waiting for the check to arrive in the mail. And buyers do not have to leave home to purchase the money order, since it is purchased online.
Because of fraudsters who trick auction users into wire-transferring money (which is like sending cash) and not delivering goods, eBay is warning users not to use Western Union wire-transfer services. Many law enforcement officials also warn auction buyers not to use wire-transfer services, but instead to use a credit card. Some eBay buyers and sellers were confusing Western Union's wire-transfer service with the Western Union Auction Payments service.
Western Union Auction Payments also announced it had stopped accepting Mastercard as a payment method for its money orders as of July 31, 2004. Users with MasterCard information stored in their account profiles should sign in to Account Central and delete the MasterCard information and add Visa or American Express debit or credit cards, according to the company.
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