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Buyer information is missing or garbled

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We depend on PayPal IPN (Instant Payment Notification) to receive the order details back from PayPal along with confirmation of completed payments, so the order data we handle for PayPal checkouts can only be as good as the data they send us.

The country where you registered for PayPal determines what default language encoding your PayPal account uses -- e.g., if you registered in the US or another country that speaks a Western European language, your PayPal account would send us IPN with an encoding that can handle all plain and accented Latin characters used in Western European languages and names, but not non-Western languages such as Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, Hindi, etc., so buyer information using the latter would become garbled or dropped in the IPN PayPal sends us for your account.

To have PayPal send us IPN which can handle characters from names and languages of any origin, you'll need to set your PayPal account accordingly:

  1. Log into your PayPal account and stay logged in;
  2. Click this link to bring up PayPal Language Encoding settings;
  3. On the Language Encoding screen, click More Options;
  4. In the Encoding menu, select UTF-8;
  5. Do you want to use the same encoding for data sent from PayPal to you (e.g., IPN, downloadable logs, emails)?
    • Typically, you should select Yes;
    • However, if you're certain that you use a particular non-Western encoding on your site, you may prefer to select that encoding in the upper Encoding menu, then click No, use: and select UTF-8 in the lower menu.
  6. Click Save.