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Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Fraudulent Charges



The call came in New Years day at eight a. m.. I was contacted by the fraud protection team for a card issued by my credit union. 99% of the time they call for no good reason. This time was that 1% good reason. Someone had put a $104 charge to my debit card. I told the fraud people that the charge was not valid so they put a stop to it. Good thing. When I checked my account on-line there nine of those $104 charges.

The fraud people should shut the card down, but that's it. I'll have to get hold of customer service to sort everything out. They'll also have to issue me a new card. Good thing I'm still at home. It's been my bitter experience that I have to either get a new card mailed to my house or pick one up at one of their branches. That did me no good at all when my card was shut down when I was traveling in Florida. My credit union only has branches in New England.

This is not the same financial institution that messed up my home escrow account last week. Of course, then it was tough to sort out because of the Christmas holiday. This time around it's the New Year holiday. Splitting up my finances gives different institutions a chance to mess up my financial life. It's good that the fraud people caught it, but what an annoying way to start the new year.

I'm starting to think that I probably shouldn't use my debit card when traveling. Security experts recommend against it. Credit cards have better protections. The thing to do is to use a credit card from a national bank. When the bill comes in I can pay them with an electronic check. When I lost my wallet in a shipwreck in Florida, it was a good thing I had a card through a national bank. They had no difficulty with shipping a replacement to a Florida address. We used that card to get back home. The best my local bank and credit union were able to do was to mail me some temporary checks. Who takes checks these days?

I should be able to sort this out later in the day -assuming the customer department doesn't place me on hold forever. Worse come to worse I could always stop by in person. That's usually effective as I'm too freaking big to throw out.

-Sixbears

8 comments:

  1. Do they still make traveler's checks?

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    1. Indeed they do. Almost nobody uses them anymore.

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  2. I'm sure it's a typo but "Splitting up my fiances" doesn't sound worthy of a 40+ year union...:)
    Yeh, our financial eggs are in multiple baskets too.

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    1. Typo. Thanks. No spell checker in the world would have saved me. :)

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  3. We, too, use a local credit union, Sixbears, and have been contacted in the same way a few times. They are much are on the spot, for us at least, than the national security service to whom we used to pay to take care of such things. When we ourselves opened a new account, that service sent us a single text message to check if it was us and that was it.
    Now we do as you say and use both debit locally and credit cards when travelling. Why give the bad guys any advantage?
    Happy days to you and your sweet wife.

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    1. Thank you Texasann. I also think it's a good idea to build up my physical cash reserves a bit more -now that the holiday shopping is over.

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  4. Crooks use every angle possible to get your money.

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    1. No idea how they got the numbers. Just one of those little annoyances.

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