Again With The Credit Card

visa logoIs it just the Foxes? Are we some sort of credit card scam magnet?

Helaine went to use our Chase Southwest Airlines Visa this morning and — REJECTED.

We had no warning. We had no notice from Chase. They just turned it off.

This is the fifth time!

Your card shut off in the past? Would you leave a comment telling me how many times? I’m really curious.

Helaine called and spoke to someone in the security department. I’m guessing he’s in Costa Rica because of his accent and because I’ve spoken to Chase call center operators there before.

This morning, a little after 6:00 AM while we were sleeping, someone purchased a $10 Petco gift card using our account. A moment later they went back and cancelled their own order.

My account had been sniffed! Someone was checking the number to make sure it was valid. The $10 was just a test. We passed.

Here’s where we get into the weeds. Chase is very diligent with this kind of fraud because they, not me, are on the hook for it. I’m guessing they’re less worried about checking accounts, where the consumer is often left holding the bag.

A few years ago when this happened the Chase agent tried to tell me they were doing this for my protection. No, no, no. My liability is zero (in most cases) by law.

Our card remains shut down, except in California. Tomorrow a new card arrives. Then the hassle begins!

We will have to go through our long list and change the account info for anyone who charges to our card. It’s an hours long process. No two businesses handle card number changes the same way.

So, why do we keep this card which seems attached to trouble? Through a quirk in our spending habits when Stef was in college and again this year, Southwest’s frequent flier program has been especially lucrative.

We have asked Chase to compensate us for this imposition by waiving their fee for the next year. This charge they shouldn’t reject.

17 thoughts on “Again With The Credit Card”

  1. Hey Geoff, it’s not just the Fox family! We’ve had the same issues twice with Bank of America Visa. The last time was 3 months before our expiration date so I asked if they could just give me my new exp. date, but Nooooo… I had to change it all last month, then again in January! What a pain in the backside!!!! But, like you, the points are too good to change cards. Besides, don’t they all have these issues in this day & age?!?

  2. I have a debit card that put a fraud alert on my card a few years ago because I purchased two different (CODED Differently on the purchase orders) magazine subscriptions from a UK publishing site. Problem was the magazines cost the same amount after the conversion from British pounds. The credit card company, thinking it was a duplicate charge, called my house from an UNIDENTIFIED number,the kind we don’t answer, and NEVER notified the Credit Union that they had a problem contacting me nor sent anything in writing. I found out more than a month later that my card wasn’t working. It gets better: When I finally resolved it with the C/U, they advised me that I should, whenever making foreign or other foreign purchases, call the credit card company and let them know in advance. Every time I do that the credit card company rep says, “Huh?”

    And the kicker of all — there is a gas station in Griswold that was a source for many stolen numbers — someone had put a card reader in one or more of it’s pumps! A friend of mine was a victim, the credit union knew but didn’t send out any notifications!

  3. I just attempted to post a note here, but I received a notification that it was declined, thinking it was spam. Having worked in the collection and fraud dept for a major credit card, what you are saying happens all the time. I’ve had my card number stolen about 5 or 6 times, all in CA. I know what to do, so it doesn’t really frustrate me like it would most people. I’ll be happy answer anyone’s questions about this issue if they ask me one here. I have done a lot of research regarding ID Theft.

  4. 3 times with my Discover card and 6 times with my Mastercard. All 9 times all the cards were in our possession. The first time it took almost 3 months for Mastercard to finally clear the fake charges.

    Discover makes 1 call and if they don’t reach you they shut it down until you call. I’ve had that happen a dozen times. Having a grocery cart full of stuff and finding out your card won’t work until you make a call? Not fun.

  5. Happened to me Friday. Had to write a letter and have document notarized before credit union will return the money zapped out of my account at a target in Rhode Island. All this happened while I was teaching in New York. So frustrating to have to go notify everyone of a new card number yet again. I am so careful of my cards. I would love to know how this happens.

  6. Geoff, it happened to me at the local Ralph’s checkout line. Bank of America security detected my card being used in France to play World of Warcraft online! BofA immediately issued a new card. I was grateful, no complaints, just amazed by the fraud detection they have! =)

    1. You were grateful? You understand, you have no liability. You are doing this to protect the bank, not you. In essence, I will have to put in two or three unpaid hours changing everything to help the bank.

  7. And wouldn’t you know, I renewed my Brit subscriptions this morning and when I came home from work there was a fraud alert call from my card company. And this time their number was identified and they left a message!!

  8. I travel all over the world, I’ve even lived overseas for a while, and only once had this happen, and it was legitimate identity theft. The banks are aware of my lifestyle and purchasing habits because I make sure to notify them. I don’t purchase erratically and I am obsessively protective of my personal data.

    Just because legally I’m not liable for fraudulent charges doesn’t mean the banks shouldn’t be protecting themselves. It’s the fraudster’s fault for the inconvenience, not the banks. The more fraudulent charges banks are responsible for, the higher fees they will charge retailers for credit card transactions, which are then built into the prices we all pay for goods and services, regardless of whether you pay with credit or not. I understand it’s an inconvenience, but how do you expect them to thwart criminal activities if a credit card number has been compromised? I’m more than thankful my own rare lapse in judgement was actually covered by the bank.

  9. It has been suggested that you notify your credit card company prior to going on a trip, so they can keep a closer eye on your account.
    Also you should sign up for any services that are offered to you by your credit card, so if something does happen, they can notify you immediately. You have 90 days to dispute a charge. Make certain you check your credit card statement every month and not allow your bank to pay any charges automatically if you bank online.
    Back in 2006, when someone stole my account number at hotel, they probably learn to regret it. Got their name, found out their address & phone # and filed a police report against them.

  10. I seem to be joining a large list. Just this week I got a call from my “Cabela World Point Visa” card with the same situation. Someone charged small dollar item and then changed it when it went through. Then charged additional plane tickets. Card never left my wallet in months, nor did I use it for any online purchases. This is my first time with this problem. At least the card company was monitoring and called me. Card cancelled, new one coming in mail. When asked, the agent said most likely these are fraudsters who run randomly generated number programs and hope to get lucky. That is why the small charge at first to see if they go through. Not sure there is a way to counteract this other than cutting up all cards and going the cash route.

    1. Linda, see if Cabela World Point Visa has a way to send you an email in case a charge is added to your account and it isn’t yours.

      1. Thanks Carole. I believe that the Visa agent is on top of it. Got assurances that all charges will be credited, and he read me the list of everything charged prior to the cut-off.

  11. Be happy at lest the government did not declare you dead.That`s what they did to me a few months ago.I am still trying to get everything back to normal.They wiped out everything on me.I am the one who has to get it all stratened out.

  12. I have had to change one of my Amex accounts 3 times due to hackers getting into corporate databases. When it happens, Amex notifies me usually before I know, FedEx new card for early delivery next day. The best part is that they have an algorithm so that if charges come through under the old number and the vendor is recognized and the amount matches my usual pattern, they put it through so I don’t have to tell anyone.

    Before I knew they did this, I simply didn’t bother to update two subscriptions I wanted to cancel anyway. Then the charges came through! When I called about it they took them off immediately and contacted vendors on my behalf.

    I became a member in 1979 when my parents were in Belgium on vacation when my father’s father died. The only credit card the airline would take was the Amex because it had no spending limit. just graduated from college, and my father insisted I get my own acct. I only use a different card if Amex not accepted. The annual fee is worth it in time saved, security and peace of mind. I have NEVER had an issue that wasn’t quickly and easily solved in 34 years. Never had that experience with any other company EVER. And no I am not a paid spokesperson. I think my experience is very typical.

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