Tuesday, February 15, 2011

How to Deal with Credit Card Fraud - Part 2

I finally got a replacement credit card today! If you didn't know, I got a credit card fraud alert call from Bank of America more than a week ago telling me that they had declined a charge for a purchase in New Jersey due to suspicious activity (I was home in California when the card was charged). I called the activation number thinking that it would be a 2 minute process of pressing buttons, but i was dead wrong.

After typing in the last four digits of my new card, the robot directed to wait to “speak to the next available representative” who’ll be right with me. Right…I waited for almost 10 minutes. Either they're trying to vamp up their customer service, push new "promotions," or get market research data, I got a live person on the other side of the line. Bank of America, if you plan on starting to charge fees to customers, you should really think about cutting down on live person credit card activation. The rep. chatted me up on the benefits of the card (which I’m well aware of) and tried to dig deeper into my spending habits.
She asked if this is the only card I use, why I sometimes use other cards instead of this one…blah blah blah. Then, after the card was activated, she congratulated me on “doing well” with the card because of the amount of rewards I’ve accumulated for the duration I’ve had the card.

Finally, it was my turn for questions. I asked about the investigation I was promised last time. She couldn’t tell me much about it. That's okay; I didn't expect her to. So I asked to be transferred to the card fraud department. After taking a minute to confirm my identity, the rep. told me that they can't really find out anything besides when and where it was charged. Ugh! I guess it’s hard for them to track down how exactly the attempted fraud was committed. But I did learn from her that a lot of times people use randomly generated credit card numbers. So it could be that my number was just “lucky” enough to be chosen. Still, it's pretty disappointing that I can't pin point whether it’s due to a charge through a merchant or that my computer was compromised or something else.

I’ve already (hopefully) purged my computer of any malware, so I’m going to cross my fingers that this doesn’t happen again in the future. The great thing is that the transition was pretty seamless. Everything transferred over just fine, including my reward points. I'll be checking my credit report next month to be sure nothing unusual is posted on there. 


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