Why Was I Marked As Fraud When Buying A VPS?
VPS hosts often tag a potential customer as being fraudulent. They usually have good reason to do so, but sometimes there are false positives where a real customer is marked as fraud. This will prevent real customers from being able to sign up for a VPS or it will cause a delay in the customer's VPS being turned up.
Being a VPS hosting company is a lot of work. One of the major difficulties is dealing with abuse. Spammers love to sign up for VPS hosting. They are able to send out a ridiculous amount of spam, make a bunch of money and then usually they don't even bother paying the VPS host. IF a spammer is allowed to sign up for VPS hosting, not only is the Internet a worse off place, but the VPS host actually looses money.
Spammers costs VPS hosts money because if enough spam is sent from an IP address, that IP address is considered dirty and organizations will start to block that IP address. The VPS host is then unable to use that IP address. VPS customers do not want to use a dirty address. Dirty IPs are unusable for sending out email and lots of other functions that VPS customers might want to use.
VPS hosts play a balancing game. They need to stop fraud and spammers from using their hosting. But they need to allow real honest customers to use their hosting.
VPS hosts have a number of different things they look for when detecting fraud. These vary from host to host, and most hosts will keep their methods somewhat secret. If they announce the world exactly what they look for when detecting fraud, then the fraudsters will know exactly how not to get caught.
A few things that VPS hosts look for when detecting fraud includes:
- Using a VPN or proxy service.
- Using a free email address (yahoo, gmail, etc.).
- Using a phone number or mailing address that does not match the geolocation of the IP address used to sign up.
If your account was marked for fraud, you can usually contact the VPS host and work with them to prove that you are a legitimate customer and that all the information your provided to them when signing up is correct. Lying to a VPS host when signing up will often lead to you being marked as fraud.
One host that I signed up with marked my as suspicious because I was using a VPN. I actually forgot that I was using the VPN at the time. All that happened was they sent me an email asking to me explain why I was on the VPN. I explained and even offered to sign up later in the day from my home IP address, but they accepted my explanation and created my account without any further problems.
Many VPS providers use the same programs to monitor for fraud. These include things like FraudRecord which is a free database of abusive, fraudulent and otherwise unwanted customers. Databases like this allow hosts to avoid troublesome customers. This helps stop spammers and other Internet abusers from simply jumping from one hosting company to another.
So if you were marked as spam, go ahead and contact the hosting company. See if they will work with you to get you signed up. There may be a delay, but usually you will be able to use their hosting. If you are not getting anywhere, you can always try a different VPS host.