Leaving Etsy

I have just been informed by Etsy that I must connect my bank account to their new third party manager called Plaid. When it asked for my bank login and password, I stopped and looked closer. In researching this entity, I was stunned to find it has been involved in lawsuits for selling consumer information, and creating false bank pages to trick people into entering financial information that they then use to sell to other entities.

Here’s what is in their policy that they can harvest and use and SELL – “financial account name and number, balance, and transaction history” “your Social Security number, date of birth, phone number, email address, security questions and answers” “identifiers and electronic network activity information about [the device you use to connect to Plaid], including internet protocol (IP) address, timezone setting and location, device location, hardware model, operating system, which features within our services you access, browser data, and other technical information about the device.”

And it goes beyond that – they can collect and crunch your numbers to make inferences about you to sell like your annual income, buying habits, loans you may have and more.
“Account information, including financial institution name, account name, account type, account ownership, branch number, IBAN, BIC, account number, routing number, and sort code;
Information about an account balance, including current and available balance; Information about credit accounts, including due dates, balances owed, payment amounts and dates, transaction history, credit limit, repayment status, and interest rate;
Information about loan accounts, including due dates, repayment status, balances, payment amounts and dates, interest rate, guarantor, loan type, payment plan, and terms;
Information about investment accounts, including transaction information, type of asset, identifying details about the asset, quantity, price, fees, and cost basis;
Identifiers and information about the account owner(s), including name, email address, phone number, date of birth, and address information;
Information about account transactions, including amount, date, payee, type, quantity, price, location, involved securities, and a description of the transaction;
Professional information, including information about your employer, in limited cases where you’ve connected your payroll accounts or provided us with your pay stub information.
OMG – EVERYTHING ABOUT YOU THEY WILL HAVE ACCESS TO! THEY JUST DON’T NEED THIS TO PROCESS A PAYMENT FOR A PATTERN!! Why does a payment processing center need to know my account balance? or my credit and buying history? They don’t.

Therefore, effective immediately, I have put my Etsy shop on Vacation. I also requested immediate payment of the balance in my account. From here forward, unless they change their policy, I will not be selling on Etsy. If you sell on Etsy and have not received the notice, you will soon. And the notice will say either agree, or they will no longer send payments to you – even if you have a balance owed to you!!

So, if you would like to help independent sellers like me stay on Etsy, go to change.org at Etsy: Don’t Violate Our Privacy and sign the electronic petition. Then help spread the word so maybe Etsy will rethink this decision.

Permission granted to anyone who wishes to use the graphic I created above.

58 thoughts on “Leaving Etsy

  1. Joan Sheppard

    I left etsy many years ago when they started selling manufactured things from big and overseas companies and still calling themselves a Crafters selling place. The fees used to be reasonable then kept going up. I’m sorry you felt you had to leave but it’s the right thing to do. Keep us posted on where we can find your patterns now. Thanks, j

  2. First, Thank your for keeping you business protected as well as your personal information. Second three cheers for you for being bold enough to share this information with others.

    1. Gretchen

      Thanks for the very important information. Too many people click OK on things without reading. There is an urgency attached. Too much personal information out there without companies collecting unnecessary information to profit from reselling it .
      I have never had an Etsy shop and discontinued PayPal and Venmo for collecting and sharing information.
      Medical online apps and info are my latest pet peeve.

  3. Michele B

    I agree with you 100% about Etsy. I don’t feel that they need to have all of that info. Thanks for the heads up and it looks like they will lose my business too.

  4. MelodyA

    It never seems to stop and Etsy has not been the company it was a few years ago since the new CEO took over. Thank you for making me aware of this issue in advance. I have had my shop on vacation all summer so now it will just stay that way.

  5. Yikes. I’ve never done Etsy but have thought about it. Looks like you will be better off dircct marketing through your beautiful blog or FB marketplace. That’s really horrible — I’ll go sign!

  6. feliciahamlin

    Who would’ve known! I have bought a couple things thru them. I hope if doesn’t affect buyers. Enjoy the beginning of the last week of September, pretty cool here in Minnesota!

  7. That’s just outrageous. Even the IRS, which is plenty nosy, doesn’t get all that information. No one who is legitimate needs your bank login and password information. Good for you for standing up against them and letting people know what is going on.

  8. I’m going to close out my Etsy acct because of this issue. Have had trouble from day one with my sellers account and never been able to sell anything there. Looking at the present to see what other alternatives I have for a selling platform for my quilts and quilted items.

  9. Oh my goodness! I buy from Etsy a lot because often I’m looking for either a piece of fabric from an older line that I need for a project, or, just need a small amount of extra fabric from a current project where I’ve made a couple of mis-cuts and am afraid that I won’t have enough to finish my project. It’s so handy for finding those hard to find things.

    But I can’t believe that they are going this route with their sellers. Why?! The company must give more generous terms to Etsy, but at the expense of the safety of their Etsy sellers. I’m so glad that you checked into it Carole.

  10. vivoaks

    WOW!!! is right!! These huge companies think they should have access to our entire lives, just to do business. And we wonder why our information is on the dark web… I think you’re very smart that you read the fine print before signing on. There’s got to be a better way! Good luck in getting Etsy to realize how stupid they are for asking for all that information from their customers. DUMB!!!

    1. I don’t often take a stand like this, but sometime we have to fight back. I’m not going back unless they rescind that policy. It is hard enough to protect your information these days, and they certainly do not need the amount of info they will have access to. I put it on my Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest boards too.


      FromMyCarolinaHome.com http://FromMyCarolinaHome.com

    2. Mary Ed Williams

      That is really scary because customers put their information out there, too, and Etsy has access. I don’t like dealing with them. Sorry you had to deal with this. I bet a lot of people will leave them, including me.
      Mary Ed

  11. Mary

    Anyone who freely gives their personal information to anyone online does not understand the implications of what they are doing. Put anything personal online and there is no retrieval of same. It is harvested and used by faceless people.
    You are very lucky you were resistant to these people and kept your personal business to yourself. They already know quite a lot about you that you didn’t actually present to them. The cyber world is one to be very wary of.

  12. Texas Quilter

    Well seems like more big Brother. I won’t purchase from Etsy anymore. I deleted the account! I also checked some “settings”. If someone keeps their account they need to go to Settings and look where you are automatically allowing them to sell your info.

  13. Constance Pentzer

    Wow! I having been considering opening a shop on Etsy. I certainly won’t now. Thank you for sharing. I will send this on to my friends with Etsy accounts.

  14. Gwen

    Thank you for this information. I had no idea how invasive they are. I had been thinking for a long time I need to put stuff in my shop but never seem to get around to it. Now I won’t. Gwen

  15. I have read thru most of the comments, this is really crazy and upsetting. I wonder about us buyers (read your response to the other mention on this) and how safe we are. Any clue how we could find that out?

  16. I hope more sellers are as diligent as you and see what information they’re giving up. I’m glad you figured it out before you signed up. I hope you are able to find a good alternative.

  17. Holy cow…what a nightmare. Is there a way to sell directly on the blog and use PayPal? I don’t often buy things on ETSY, but will disconnect and not give it another thought as a consumer.

  18. Jeanette Burkhaulter

    Good for you for alerting everyone. I don’t sell on Etsy but have occasionally bought from there. There is NO reason at all that they need access to all of this information. I’m really scared for those who agree to it!

  19. Carole, Yikes is right! I’m glad you caught it! I’m also writing to let you know that I can’t do the ZOOM sew day on Saturday- my sister-in-law passed away on Sunday and the funeral will be on Saturday. Looking forward to the Fall Jubilee!!

  20. ICK, that’s creepy! That’s why I have a separate little checking account for my online activity. I even do my mobile deposits into that account and then transfer money to the real account. I won’t even put my banking app on my phone. I don’t trust any of them!

  21. Thank you so much for being on guard and sharing this disturbing information with the rest of us. I just signed the petition and will share with all my guild members immediately. I was just thinking of selling some things on etsy….I won’t now. I’ve not been happy with ebay for some time and thought etsy was the better choice. The whole monetary system may be changing soon. I know money is “dirty”, unsanitary in the wake of covid, but I am uneasy every time I use my debit card, or paypal. It frightens me to think my conservative political views might affect the digital bank account some day. Thanks again, Carole.

  22. JustGail

    My first thought is that they are trying to comply with IRS rules on reporting sellers’ income. But no way does that require handing over your banking info, log in passwords, and entire credit/loan history. What they are wanting access to is so far beyond reasonable, I got no words. Well I do have words, but shall refrain from using them here. And I’m not even an etsy seller.
    As a possible purchaser, I was extremely disappointed and quit even looking at etsy (except for direct links from blogs) when they allowed the imported mass-made stuff on. I hope the sellers can quickly find other places to sell their items and toss etsy aside.
    Thanks for spreading the word about their shenanigans.

  23. There was no way I was giving anyone my bank login credentials, either! If you read the fine print on the message from Etsy, you can also confirm the account manually.

    “You can also verify your account manually with test deposits, which may take a few days.”

    I think I just had to enter the bank name and routing number, which they already have. They then deposited 2 tiny deposits, like 11 cents and 77 cents, in the next few days. The instructions said once I saw those deposits in my bank account, to go back to my Etsy shop, in the Finances section, and confirm that I did indeed see them. They asked me to enter the dollar amounts that I saw deposited, and I did. They then withdrew the amounts. Done.

    I did not trust Plaid – no one gets my bank login information!

    1. Yes, but that manual option only came about because of the backlash and the petition. It is buried in the fine print, and I would suspect that most do not find it. I’ve been getting payments from Etsy for years, why should I re-verify it now? No reason at all! Oh, and Plaid is the one doing the manual payments too, so you are dealing with them. Etsy is insisting that I do this, and I refuse to work with Plaid, manual or otherwise.

      Do consider joining the Indie Sellers Guild.

  24. This is infuriating. They have begun to do some things that seem really sketchy and this is certainly one of them. I don’t have a store as I don’t have a lot and feel like their arrangements are much more beneficial to people with larger inventory.

  25. Judy Andrew

    Dear Carole, I have a lot of crafty friends that use Etsy & I will certainly make known to them about thier dirty practices! Thanks so much for sharing!

  26. Sharon F

    Thanks for making us aware of this intrusive requirement for Etsy sellers. I’m not a seller and I have made very few, if any, purchases on Etsy. Now I’m glad of that! Asking for your bank login and password was a big warning sign. I’m so happy you stopped to read all the fine print.

  27. Thank you for this good info Carole! I had no idea. I did some research and read some alarming things. I have nothing in my shop but had plans for upcoming months, so I’m glad you took the time to read and report!

  28. Everyone loves their digital media, and everyone links all their stuff to their phones via accounts, apps, and such. You have no idea at the volume of privacy rights that are being violated and people do not even know it. Due to IRS changes in the past couple of years, they have probably hired this third party to ensure the tax code is being adhered too. I am happy that you got to enjoy a good long haul with this company before profits were gouged and bank accounts were declared un-private. Unfortunately, we are probably going to a digital currency. This frightens the bajesus outa me. Because of this upcoming change, they will be able to make you poor at the click of a mouse whether it is a hacker, or a company, or at worst even the gov’t can freeze all assets. Hold onto your money, we are in for a very rocky ride in the next few months. If Etsy has enough people drop out of their website, and then only commerical businesses transacting, it will greatly impact them and they will once again sell off or become bankrupt. Stay strong!

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