Online marketplace Etsy says U.S. sellers must verify bank accounts

A sign advertising the online seller Etsy Inc. is seen outside the Nasdaq market site in Times Square following Etsy's IPO in New York

Aug 26 (Reuters) – Etsy Inc (ETSY.O) said on Friday U.S. sellers on its marketplace will either need to self verify their bank accounts or do it through a third-party as it seeks to comply with anti-money laundering and related regulations.

The sellers Reuters talked to and several others on discussion forums were annoyed over the move, saying the recommended mode of verification involved providing financial technology platform Plaid with their banking username and password.

"This is so typical of Etsy on any controversial subject but, when it has to do with our finances, it's unacceptable," said Dorothy Domingo, who has been selling functional pottery on Etsy since 2008.

Plaid, which last year agreed to pay $58 million to settle a case that alleged it used financial information without consent, said it was "committed to providing a secure experience" to users.

Etsy has also provided the option to self verify bank accounts, but a seller who did not wish to be named said the process was tedious.

"Unfortunately, a history of less-than-stellar communication and customer service contributes to a general lack of trust in Etsy," said another seller who also wanted to remain anonymous.

This is the latest in a series of issues faced by some sellers. A few went on strike earlier this year to protest an increase in transaction fee at Etsy. read more

Etsy is still a key source of income for its nearly 8 million active sellers, but some said they were considering exiting the platform.

"I haven't fully reopened my Etsy shop, because so many of my wonderful customers have been going to my website to support me. But with this, I may be forced to shut down my Etsy shop permanently," seller Kristi Cassidy said.


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