Strange Amazon packages cause confusion
Published Monday, May 13, 2019 6:00AM PDT
Last Updated Monday, May 13, 2019 7:28PM PDT
Rosalie Fedoryshyn had a mystery on her hands when strange packages started showing up on her doorstep.
It’s not unusual for the McLaughlin on Your Side team to get complaints about packages not being delivered or arriving on time, but this one piqued our interest.
Fedoryshyn hadn’t ordered the products but they were addressed to her, and when she opened them she discovered something even stranger. They were from people who had purchased the products on Amazon and were returning them for a refund.
“This is the second package I received,” said Fedoryshyn, as she pulled a paraffin wax heater out of a box.
It was sent to her from a woman in Vancouver. The first package to arrive was a hearing amplifier from a woman in Saskatoon.
She returned the hearing amplifier to the sender but when the second package arrived she called CTV News because she was worried.
An Amazon seller had been giving out her personal address as the return address for customers wanting to return unwanted products, promising a refund once the product was received.
Fedorsyhyn says she couldn’t get Amazon to take the issue seriously. She says when she called to complain about it, she was told to throw the products out.
‘I’m not worried about the package, what I’m worried about it is why my information was given out to the general public. That is my concern here. And he’s like, ‘Can I put you on hold?’ I said, ‘Yeah,’ and he hung up on me,” Fedoryshyn recounted.
CTV News reached tried contacting both Amazon customers who had sent the packages. The woman in Saskatoon did not respond but the woman who returned the wax heater did confirm that she was given Fedoryshyn’s name and address as the location to send the returned product.
In fact she shared a message from the Amazon seller with Fedoryshyn that confirmed it.
“I’m a customer of Amazon. I use Amazon. Is my information safe when I order something? Now I’m questioning that,” said Fedoryshyn.
Amazon responded telling CTV News that the Amazon seller did not get Fedoryshyn’s address from Amazon.
Amazon said the seller inadvertently made a mistake but didn’t say why or how.
However, Amazon also stated:
We take matters like this very seriously, and given the selling partner provided an address that is not theirs, we have closed their account. This is not only to ensure this doesn’t happen again, but because we also have zero tolerance for abuse of our systems.
This is not the first time there have been mysterious Amazon deliveries. Last year CTV News reported about strange Amazon packages being sent to college campuses across the country. The merchandise was worth thousands of dollars.
Was it a marketing ploy? Perhaps. But again Amazon said the sellers never got the addresses from Amazon’s system but how or why it happened was never answered.
Amazon says both of the customers who sent Fedoryshyn their Amazon products have received refunds.
The woman who sent the wax heater, didn’t want to talk on camera, but did confirm to CTV News that she had to fight to get her money back, including the $28 she had spent on shipping the "returned" heater. The message she was given the by Amazon seller was clear that she would only get her money back after the product was received.
CTV News asked Amazon if the seller was based overseas but Amazon did not respond to the question.
Fedoryshyn may never know why her address was used for the returned products but for now the shipments have stopped.