Account suspended on log in

  • signed up using Github account

  • attempted to log in using Github account

    This resulted in the following error:

Authentication Error

Authenticating failed due to the following error: We already have a registered user with this email address. Log in to connect your GitHub account.

To clarify, I was attempting to log in via the “log in with Github” button, not make a new account as the above message suggests.

  • attempted to log in a few more times, same error
  • checked my email associated with my Github account, there was an email from Netlify telling me that my account has been flagged by their fraud prevention system, and that I need to verify my identity
  • clicked the link in the email, it tells me photo ID is required. This is a problem because I don’t have photo ID.
  • sent a message to customer support, received a response asking for a screenshot of the error message
  • replied to that email with the details requested, and a few seconds later received the following automated response:

We regret to inform you that your account has been flagged due to increased potential for fraudulent behavior. As a result, we are unable to enable your account. We understand that you may have questions regarding the ban; however, please note that we will not be able to provide further review or additional reasoning for this decision.

We appreciate your interest in our services, and while we understand this may be disappointing news, we take the security and integrity of our platform very seriously. Our Fraud and Abuse Team has thoroughly reviewed the situation, and based on their assessment, the decision to disable your account has been made. We value your understanding and cooperation.

Thank you,
The Netlify Fraud and Abuse Team

Looking at replies to others with similar issues, it seems the only solutions being offered are to upload photo ID (which I do not have, so is not an option) or to opt into a pro account.

With the latter, can I start a free trial and immediately cancel it?

Will a reason be provided for this issue happening in the first place, to help ensure it doesn’t happen again in future?

Can you share your email? I’m not seeing an signup attempts with the email you wrote in with? What country are you signing up from ?

Yes, it’s a different email address. I am happy to share it but is there a way to privately message it to you instead of sharing it publically?

I am signing up from the UK, but may have had a VPN enabled when signing up. I wondered if this could have caused the problem, but seeing a multitude of similiar reports, I’d think if using a VPN was the problem, that would have been identified and mentioned already.

Thanks for supplying your email. Your account was automatically marked as spam in an effort to crack down on potential fraudulent behaviour. Please see our VP of security response regarding this.

You should now be able to verify yourself via stripe to unlock your account. Please try signing in again and follow the prompts to upload a copy of your ID so we can be sure you are legitimate. Please view a list of acceptable documentation for your country here. If you are not prompted to do this please submit a support ticket and mark the reason as “signup/login”.

If you do not want to verify your ID you can bypass this step by signing up for a Pro tier account.

I’ve already clarified that photo ID is not an option for me.

I also asked if it’s possible to cancel the Pro tier account while it is still in the free trial, to bypass the verification step and avoid being charged for a service I didn’t intend on subscribing to.

Also, I asked if there is any way to prevent this happening in future.

Hi, @darth1. You can downgrade before the trial ends. However, to even begin the trail, you must enter a valid payment method. Again, you can downgrade before that payment method is charged but you must enter valid payment method information to activate the Pro trial.

Regarding how to prevent this from occurring, there is nothing that can be done to guarantee it will not occur. There are things that make it less or more likely to happen but nothing can guarantee either scenario. For example, connecting to Netlify from a geographic region strongly associated with previous illegal activity will increase the likelihood of the account being flagged. (The majority of the fraud at Netlify comes from a short list of specific locations around the world.) Similarly, if you use a VPN that has been previously associated with illegal activity, that will also increase the changes of the account being flagged. This means your account can get flagged for things you do not control, like criminals using the same VPN service that you do or living in a country with a high rate of internet crime.

I will consider signing up for a pro account then downgrading immediately. My only concern is that if I recommend this service to clients, I don’t want them to have to deal with their account being banned at any moment with no reason given, and having to provide photo ID.

Since I used a VPN while signing up, I’ll assume this triggered the security response so I will be mindful of that in future.

However, I’d like to know if I bypass verification by signing up for Pro, then downgrade, what would the recourse be if it happens again? To sign up for Pro and downgrade everytime it happens?

Also, I intended on using the free plan but providing my card details in case my form submissions go over the limit. Would this also prevent this issue from happening?


EDIT: I attempted to sign up for the Pro tier, but it still takes me to the same identity verification screen. Why is this solution being repeated in the many other threads reporting this issue?

Is there no recourse? I have attempted the frequently suggested solution and it did not work, as described above.

Hi, you can signup again for a Pro account but this is a trial if you get banned again you will not be able to just upgrade and downgrade. Why do we ask this? Because those are on a paid tier go through a more stringent review process before deactivating your account for potential fraudulent behaviour (unless a blatant violation of our terms of service) rather than those on a free account.

You can definitely signup for a Pro account and if you downgrade you will not get banned again unless you violate the terms of service.

You will still need to provide ID if you are trying to signup for a Pro account with the same email you were previously banned from.

What a confusing reply. Why would I want to sign up for a Pro account if it still requires photo ID, when my reason for doing so is that you have suggested it as an alternative to providing photo ID?

“If you do not want to verify your ID you can bypass this step by signing up for a Pro tier account.”

I apologize if I come across as irate, but this is the most frustrating experience I’ve ever had just attempting to sign up to a service.

" You can definitely signup for a Pro account and if you downgrade you will not get banned again unless you violate the terms of service."

I have no intention of violating the terms of service, but doing so isn’t what got me banned in the first place, so this does not inspire confidence.

I looked at the accepted documents on the Stripe website and it mentions driver’s license. Can anyone confirm if this includes a provisional driver’s license?

I’m not sure what a provisional license is but you can try it and see if this works.

I’m asking because I’m considering paying for one solely for this purpose. Is there anybody who can confirm this?

I’d recommend you reach out to stripe to confirm this. If you have a passport this would work well too.