Missing orders, Prime membership, Cloud music, etc with Amazon?

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So, here's a scary incident. I logged into Amazon to access my Cloud Music library (big fan of the service) and noticed it was empty. I checked my profile and noticed that my past orders were also empty. Even more scary, I had somehow lost Prime membership. I saw this for the first time a few weeks back but never figured out how I fixed it. Not knowing what to do, I contacted Amazon via their email support, and, kudos to them, got a response in less than five minutes. But the response... oh my god:

I'm sorry to hear about the trouble you had accessing your accounts. After some research, I've confirmed that you have four (4) Amazon.com accounts with the same e-mail address and different passwords.

This can happen if you've visited Amazon.com in the past and mistakenly indicated that you're a new customer when signing in. A new account with the same e-mail address and a different password would be created.

etc

So just to be clear: Amazon lets you register the same email with another password. For the life of me I cannot imagine in what universe allowing this makes sense. Perhaps they want to make it as easy as possible for users to buy stuff, but it seems like this would bite people in the ass later on - as it did me.

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Raymond is a senior developer evangelist for Adobe. He focuses on document services, JavaScript, and enterprise cat demos. If you like this article, please consider visiting my Amazon Wishlist or donating via PayPal to show your support. You can even buy me a coffee!

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Archived Comments

Comment 1 by Carl Von Stetten posted on 2/3/2015 at 2:14 AM

So we're they able to merge all those accounts into one account?

Comment 2 (In reply to #1) by Raymond Camden posted on 2/3/2015 at 2:17 AM

I didn't ask. I used an older password of mine, it worked, and the new password is an account I don't need so, yeah, I guess I have multiple accounts now even though I don't want them.

Comment 3 (In reply to #2) by Carl Von Stetten posted on 2/3/2015 at 2:20 AM

Cool. The only reason I can think of for Amazon allowing multiple accounts using same email/different password is for all the grandparents (read: senior citizens) who use a shared email address.

Comment 4 by Lola Lee Beno posted on 2/3/2015 at 11:11 AM

Wow . . . I didn't know that. I think this is a bug or a stupid feature that they need to rethink.

Comment 5 by Ray Buechler posted on 2/3/2015 at 4:24 PM

Hmm...I wonder what would happen if you had two accounts with the same email address but different passwords and then changed the password on one of them to match the other?

Comment 6 (In reply to #5) by Susan posted on 2/6/2015 at 7:05 PM

That's a scary thought. They shouldn't allow multiple accounts with one email address.

Comment 7 by Kai Koenig posted on 2/9/2015 at 10:43 PM

I have seen this as well, in particular with Amazon.com, Amazon.de and Amazon.co.uk --- which are all kind of the same Amazon, but different.

Comment 8 by Mark of the Beach posted on 1/26/2017 at 8:16 PM

Today I saw this problem on my work PC, fat-fingered the password so I tried an older one and viola I was in. But recent orders and Prime options disappeared. Instead of going to my Prime features, there was a button to start my free 30-day trial of Prime!

So weird that when I created the Prime account, the non-prime version stayed in limbo. Once I logged back into the Prime account, things I ordered as a non-Prime member were not there.

On the android amazon shopping app, things got really weird. I went to look at the account there, which I had already been logged in from when I did the password right. Prompted me for a password when I wanted to look at account settings and I put the old one in. Saw a picture on a part I'd recently ordered, but clicked on "your orders", empty going back to pre-Prime days. Image of Part bought recently persisted when clicking on the amazon logo at top to go back to home screen. Would not let me log out of the non-prime account, I had to uninstall.reinstall the app to login to the Prime acct.

Obviously they should fix this and only allow one account and one password per email address. What if I reset password while in the non-Prime version of my account? How would I ever recover a lost password to the Prime account?

Comment 9 by Bob Clingan posted on 1/27/2017 at 2:57 PM

My wife and I recently discovered that we have separate prime memberships- would love to combine them some how. She has tons of books on her account and we don't want to screw it up.

Comment 10 (In reply to #8) by ambientnoise posted on 4/2/2018 at 10:45 PM

Just wanted to thank you for the post. I just had the same problem and was able to fix it through Amazon support.