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April 25, 2019

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Lucky cash mystery is a case of bad coding

A BAOSHAN District man was surprised and mystified when he started to receive “lucky money” every day in his Alipay account earlier this month, so much so that he had to turn to the police.

It turned out to have been a misunderstanding.

The man, surnamed Xie, said he started to receive payments of a few yuan after April 7. Alipay was unable to solve the mystery, and by the time Xie contacted police the sum amounted to 447.4 yuan (US$67).

Xie told police that he had bought some items at a stall in a wet market on April 7.

An officer went to the stall and when he scanned an Alipay QR code hanging from a stand, the vendor, a man surnamed Zhou, found he received no money.

Zhou said he had begun to use the QR code on April 7.

It turned out Zhou had failed to activate the QR code.

Xie, who was the first person to scan the code, had instead become the registered user.

Xie said he remembered that he was required to register something on his phone after scanning the code of the vendor, but he had no idea that he was actually binding the code to his own account, according to police.

Xie has forwarded the money to the vendor, and the vendor, thanking him for his honesty, has promised to give him a discount if he buys there again.


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