I'm Miles from the Social Care team at Shopify.
These are great questions. When it comes to your personal information, I can totally understand your concerns.
We ask for identity documents when you use Shopify Payments. The reason for this is to verify the business and to confirm it's operating legally. As you'll be taking payment from customers, Shopify Payments is like a bank, in that we need to know who is using it, and what they're using it for. It's very similar to what you'd provide to your bank when setting up an account with them.
Now, in regards to security, our review process takes 1-3 business days upon the documents being uploaded. They're uploaded through a secure link, and we do not use the information for anything other than the review. Once the review is done, we archive the data and it is not accessed again. You can view our verification processes in our Shopify Payments Terms of Service.
I'd also like you to keep in mind, we do these verifications on most merchants, and it does not mean you've been flagged in any way. Failure to provide the documents required would result in the need to choose another payment gateway, but you would still be able to use the Shopify platform. In those cases, you would need to choose another payment gateway. For gateways available in your region, check out our Approved Payment Gateways and click on your country.
I hope this has helped clarify any of your confusion with this. If you do have any other questions at all, please don't hesitate to let me know.
@Miles Since my business is incorporated, why can't I just send my corporation info why my personal driver's license. One of the reasons to incorporate is to take your "personal self" out of the picture.
Great question! Essentially, even though businesses can be incorporated, an individual is still going to be the account owner. If you think of Shopify Payments like a bank, you'd still need to provide personal documentation in order to reserve a company name and set up your business banking.
The documentation process is there to protect your business and your customer security when taking payments through verification of your details. We do not use this for any reason apart from verification and the information is not shared with third parties not related to Shopify Payments and the verification process.
We're always here to help, so please let me know if you have any follow up questions at all.
Understood, but... the bank account you send the shopify payments to is also in the corporations name, not mine. It just made me a little uncomfortable. Since I put the account name under the business and sumbitted my corporation papers I think that should've been ok. I was made to change the shopify account name to my personal name and submit my license in order to get my payouts. I was told I could change the account name back to my business after I verify. I can't figure out how to do that.
Totally understandable - and thanks for letting me know the process made you uncomfortable. This is good feedback that I can pass onto to the team.
If you need to change any account details for Shopify Payments, you'll need to contact our live support team as we'll need to access your account and create a ticket for our payments team to help you change it.
To contact our support team, first head to https://help.shopify.com/en/questions and log into your store. Once you've logged in, you'll be prompted to ask about a topic.
Doing this will present you with links to relevant documentation on our Help Center, but there will also be an option to contact us directly if you require further help.
Clicking on this button at the bottom will then present you with the different support options available.
If you don't yet have a Shopify store or are unable to login, you can choose the "Continue without logging in" option at the start and continue through the same process.
I'm Miles from the Social Care team at Shopify. Thanks for your thoughts on this one. I can certainly appreciate the hesitation with wanting to provide personal details to us.
What I'd like to start with, is that you're absolutely right. Shopify is not a bank. We're a web hosting platform that provides merchants around the world with the tools they need to run a successful business. Shopify Payments is a service provider that is a bank, as it deals with financial transactions. With that comes a responsibility that we verify everyone using that service to ensure everything is above board. The documents we request are submitted and viewed securely, so only the Shopify Payments advisor doing the review can see them.
In regards to the reason we ask for identity documents, I'd recommend having a read of the Shopify Payments Terms of Service. Section B part 3 explains the verification process for you. Here's a small excerpt from the terms:
To verify your identity, we may require additional information, including your company registration number or business number, your HST, GST, or tax number, and, if applicable, your date of birth. We may also ask for additional information to help verify your identity and assess your business risk, including, but not limited, to business invoices, reseller authorization or distributor information, a driver’s license or other government issued identification, or business license, for you or for any of the owners or principals of your business.
This explains what we may ask for and advises the reason for this is to verify for your identity and assess your business risk. If you require further clarity around the Terms of Service, I'd recommend seeking legal counsel.
As I mentioned in one of my replies above, this is not dissimilar to most payment gateway requirements. If Shopify Payments isn't right for you, you can check out other approved third-party gateways here: https://bit.ly/31n1s6e.
I hope this helps to address the concerns you raised, but if not, please don't hesitate to let me know.
I have a question about the documents I've been getting it for about a week and everytime i upload the documents they appear again it says either photo is not clear or doesn't match shopify account so it really confused me..
So my question is if i deactivate shopify payments and use Paypal, will i get verifications documents also? Or it's just with shopify payments?
I'm Miles from the Social Care team at Shopify.
If you do decide to deactivate Shopify Payments and use PayPal, that's absolutely fine. You'd need to ask PayPal about their verification process though as they are third-party. Generally speaking, most payment processors require verification. You can check my replies above around the reasons verification is important for you, as well as the processor.
With that being said, we'd love to see you continue to use Shopify Payments. Have you received any emails from our team at all regarding your payouts or account being on hold? If so, replying to them would be the fastest way to find out what might be going wrong with your documents. If you haven't received any emails, my suggestion would be to contact our live support teams for assistance to see what the issue might be.
Once you've sorted out your payment processor, you'll be ready to continue selling. Are you currently doing any marketing for your store? I'd recommend checking out Shopify Compass (https://bit.ly/2LyfedE). Shopify Compass provides you with webinars and courses on things like store design, marketing and more. It's 100% free for everyone and new content is being added all the time. This program will help you drive more traffic into your store and also convert that traffic into sales.