Best Buy asking for SSN for Verizon?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Eric-PTEK, Mar 16, 2012.

  1. Eric-PTEK macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2009
    We had not planned on getting an iPad 3 to replace our iPad 2 until all the hub bub had died down.

    However the LTE tethering got me really interested since I spend a lot of time tethered to my iPhone 4S and Verizon's LTE coverage is better than AT&T's, and by that I mean there is no AT&T coverage at all.

    About 1pm we walk into Best Buy in Ann Arbor Michigan, apparently the best place to buy an iPad ever since I have walked in on launch day the past 3 products and picked one up with no reservation or anything else.

    I said I wanted a 16GB Black Verizon. He said we had to activate it on Verizon's network, fine.

    They asked for a Drivers license...ok sometimes they ask for a license for convenience, easier to read than to listen to someone mutter their address.

    Then he says he needs our SSN. I refused and said why. His reply was that for Verizon service and "to make sure you do not owe them money".

    WTF, now their a collector for Verizon? I explained Verizon data is pre-paid, month to month, no contract and I refused again. Said give me the iPad and walked out.

    Got in the car, took 2 minutes to sign up just like AT&T, prepaid CC and done.

    No way in hell I was giving them that information for any reason when purchase and data did not require a contract, which requires a credit check.

    I've got a call into the manager at the BB but anyone had this happen?

    I have to check but not sure if collections of that information under a false pretense is legal in Michigan because it was a false pretense, you did not need to provide a SSN to purchase and activate the product.
  2. Sharkoid macrumors member

    Mar 7, 2012
    The verizon store i went to asked for my SSN as well. (My good friend works there) I gave it to them.
  3. ninaco macrumors 6502


    Mar 11, 2012
    Shoot, that is not right - especially for month-to-month service. I haven't signed up for LTE on the iPad yet. Hopefully, it won't be required because there is no way I'm giving my SSN. Maybe you were doing post-paid rather than pre-paid?
  4. jedivulcan macrumors 6502

    May 15, 2007
    No. You shouldn't have to give your social security number for the iPad 3 if you're planning on using it pre-paid.
  5. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Feb 28, 2011
    They still credit check. That's what the SSN is for. Don't want to supply it? Your LTE is two tin cans and a string.
  6. Nychot macrumors 6502a

    Aug 15, 2011
    Signing up with Verizon ON the iPad I believe asks for your ssn.
  7. Eric-PTEK thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2009
    Best Buy lied. I talked to BB and Verizon. Verizon offers the OPTION of being billed for iPad data usage, in that case yes you provide a SSN. However the unit can be done prepaid, just like AT&T without a SSN, only with a credit card.

    You've already purchased the device, you are now just purchasing service, plus its prepaid.

    I activated it, with my CC, just like AT&T.

    Best Buy told me they had to have it, never offered me the option of activating it on my own.

    They did not refuse to sell it, but after I refused to give my SSN and said I'd activate it on my own with Verizon he just stared at me and rang it up.
  8. ethana macrumors 6502a

    Jul 17, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    I too was confused about the pre-paid vs. post-billing plans and I had Best Buy activate it. Had I known I would have NEVER done that!

    Now I have to call Verizon whenever I want to change my plan, I have to wait for a bill in the mail, etc etc.
  9. Sharkoid macrumors member

    Mar 7, 2012
    Why is there two options then? I don't understand lol...
  10. dtlee1974 macrumors regular

    Apr 2, 2010
    >Signing up with Verizon ON the iPad I believe asks for your ssn.

    Mine didn't.

    >They still credit check.

    They aren't extending credit on a pre-paid account so they shouldn't be doing credit checks. If they pop my report with a hard inquiry I'm going to be super pissed.
  11. ethana macrumors 6502a

    Jul 17, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    #1 - Verizon can charge you an activation fee of $35 with the billing plan. If I can a bill in the mail with a fee, I am going to be pissed and call Verizon and get it waived.

    #2 - They lock you in on an automatically billed plan. Maybe you'll forget... maybe you'll just pay.... either way you can't turn the service off via the iPad itself (in the View Account area), and that makes it better for Verizon to collect more money from you.
  12. ninaco macrumors 6502


    Mar 11, 2012
    I'm new to this. But, I understand that one difference is that the post-paid plan allows you to use more data than your plan provides at $10 gig.

    If you sign up on the iPad yourself, you automatically have the pre-paid plan (no option for additional data at the $10 a gig rate). If you buy from Verizon & activate there, then you're likely post-paid. If Best Buy or other retailers are activating it for you, it sounds like they're signing you up for post-paid as well.

    I can understand the credit check for post-paid. They're providing service before it's paid for.
  13. nUFamn, Mar 16, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2012

    nUFamn macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2011
    When they bill, they will allow you to go over your plan allowance at $10/gb.

    Edit Dang it, ninaco snuck by me.
  14. Eric-PTEK thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2009
    And all thats great.

    In fact if BB had explained to me "If you go with the billed plan you can go over at 10 per GB" I probably would have done that.

    The issue was deceptive collection of personal information because the plan was not explained at all. I assume Verizon was like AT&T, pre paid, zero activation in store, you do it all on the iPad itself. Until someone informs me, like a sales person, that you have a choice how are you to know?

    They asked for the SSN and never offered the other choice which to me is deceptive.

    I bought the Verizon version because of LTE and its silly fast around here. The only thing I did not like was the pricing plans but if the guy at BB would have been a bit more honest about both options then I would have most likely gone with the billed plan because of the amount of data I tend to use.
  15. Zexel macrumors member

    Mar 15, 2010
    Postpaid - Activate directly through Best Buy, or Verizon, credit check, month-to-month contract, you have include mobile hotspot, global roaming, and they charge a $35 activation fee.

    Prepaid - Activate through the iPad with a credit card, no mobile hotspot feature, no global roaming, no activation fee.

    The reason why Best Buy wanted you to activate it there is because they get paid quite a lot from the carrier. If you leave the store and activate it directly through the iPad, they get nothing.
  16. fullmanfullninj macrumors regular

    Dec 30, 2009
    Somewhat correct. There should be no $35 activation fee...they only do that for contracts - confirmed by my former Verizon rep while I was working at Best Buy.

    What is a month-to-month contract anyway? You're not signing a contract...even if you're postpaid. At anytime you can cancel your service and they will bill you for that last month and then you'll be on your way. Month-to-month contract is an oxymoron.

    I am not positive whether or not you get hotspot/roaming/etc on I won't comment on that.

    And Best Buy does not get that much notional margin on iPad activations...iirc it's around $30 per activation, but it's not "quite a lot".

    The thing with SSN that people never realized (while I was working at BBY), is that the SSN goes directly to Verizon. It just so happens we are a retailer and it seems "strange", but when you go to VZW, they'll ask you for your SSN when signing up for a new line or whatever. When you do it at Best Buy, it's the same thing. We don't get to see your SSN at all, the program that Best Buy uses to activate phones/lines is essential a nice GUI for each carrier's web-based contract. So rather than use Verizon's eROES to enter your information, Best Buy uses a GUI that directly works with eROES.

    Your sales associate probably just made a mistake...and misinformed. Remember, you always can just say "no". Nothing to get frilly and up in arms about. Just say no, take it home, do it yourself. Easy :)

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