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  • Credit Card Fraud

    So, I'm putting in an honest days work when I get an 800 number call on my cell. Obviously I ignore it thinking it was a telemarketer. I listen to the voicemail later and it's an automated message from USAA notifying me of a suspicious transaction. I immediately go online to check my account. Two transactions look very unfamiliar: A transaction for $1.00 at some random place I never heard of over 50 miles from my current location and another transaction from a location--get this--in Chicago for $460.08 at a restaurant.

    I called the fraud department at USAA, reported the fraudulent transactions, which closed the account and ordered a new card. End of story right? Wrong. Initially, I was going to let it go but my old loss prevention instincts kicked in and I took it further. I traced the transaction to the very location of the restaurant transaction through USAA. I called the manager and alerted her of the situation. At first she's all non-chalant about it and tells me to call the local police. I informed her I couldn't call the local police because I'm in Birmingham, Alabama.

    She was shocked that I knew her name, location and the card number and the amount of the transaction--Not to mention that I was calling her from hundreds of miles away. While I'm talking to her the guy calls her. As it turns out the guy had made reservations for a large party later that afternoon. You're probably wondering how the guy got my credit card number without ever touching my credit card. What made it so easy to track him to the origin of his crime was the fact that I had only used that card once--It was at a fuel station on the Air National Guard base here in Birmingham. Wait, it gets better.

    The manager at the restaurant tells me she's going to call the police and call me back when she's done. She calls me back and asks me if I knew a guy by the name of "Sergeant Johnson". It was confirmed. This jackwagon swiped the number from the furl pump. So, I tell her to play along and let the guy show up for dinner. I call her back to find out the result. She screwed up the impromptu sting by calling the guy back to 'verify his card number' by asking for his drivers license number. The guy choked. She then informed him that the cops were waiting for him and he hung up. She said the cops couldn't have done anything because she cancelled the transaction as soon as I notified her. But fraud is fraud. Word to the wise: If you have a bank that has an online account option--USE IT DAILY. USE IT RELIGIOUSLY. This is why I haven't carried traditional paper and coin in my wallet in over 10 years. It will pay off every single time.

  • #2
    Re: Credit Card Fraud

    A few years ago, my wife called me saying we had almost no money in our checking. Turns out someone charged a bunch of World of Warcraft purchases at the same time. Looking back, they did a few transactions over the previous months...likely testing the waters.

    Last year, a new restaurant didn't last because a few staff were stealing credit card info and then charging hundreds at big box stores. I didnt fall victim, but requested a new card anyway. Unfortunately, a co-worker I recommended to the place did get hers stolen. Really sad. We were going to the place all the time, loved the food and the staff. Now I am once again deprived of good asian buffet AND habachi for one price.

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    • #3
      Re: Credit Card Fraud

      Originally posted by SteveLord View Post
      Turns out someone charged a bunch of World of Warcraft purchases at the same time.


      Yeah, sorry about that.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Credit Card Fraud

        Originally posted by SteveLord View Post
        A few years ago, my wife called me saying we had almost no money in our checking. Turns out someone charged a bunch of World of Warcraft purchases at the same time. Looking back, they did a few transactions over the previous months...likely testing the waters.

        Last year, a new restaurant didn't last because a few staff were stealing credit card info and then charging hundreds at big box stores. I didnt fall victim, but requested a new card anyway. Unfortunately, a co-worker I recommended to the place did get hers stolen. Really sad. We were going to the place all the time, loved the food and the staff. Now I am once again deprived of good asian buffet AND habachi for one price.
        Situations like these are good for everyone to know, so we can be more wary and proactive in the future. The 117th Air National Guard Refueling Wing behind Birmingham International Airport is a weak spot. I briefed the MP in charge there about the whole ordeal and he was quite interested in gathering the information. I sincerely hope it wasn't a fellow service member, let alone an NCO, that did this. The only thing that saved this guy from me hunting him down and arresting him myself was the fact that he was so far away. If he had done what he did anywhere in Metro Birmingham or even within an hours drive I would have been waiting for him to show up for his reservation.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Credit Card Fraud

          This is why I do not use a debit card and recommend to my clients not to use one. I'd whether my credit card company be on the hook for the fraud vs. coming straight from my bank account. And if you are worried about getting into debt, use an American Express card as the classic version makes you pay off the full balance each month.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Credit Card Fraud

            Originally posted by Bmac View Post
            This is why I do not use a debit card and recommend to my clients not to use one. I'd whether my credit card company be on the hook for the fraud vs. coming straight from my bank account. And if you are worried about getting into debt, use an American Express card as the classic version makes you pay off the full balance each month.

            I'm not 100% sure that debt cards have the same protections as a credit card according to the provider. Nevertheless, I'm pleased at the reaction time and cooperativeness of USAA with my credit card. If I had known the first automated call was USAA calling the guy wouldn't have even been able to use my card number a second time.

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            • #7
              Re: Credit Card Fraud

              Yeah, debit cards are a big nay-nay. You've got way more protection with a credit card than with a debit card. Check this out... I'm buying bagels for my crew at work on Friday and forgot I that I didn't have cash on me. No prb, I'll use my Amex. About 15:00 I get a call from Amex Fraud telling me I have some suspicous activity on my account. The call's from India, and in my line of business I get a million calls from India every day, and I don't trust no one on the phone who's talking about my Amex acct (especially from India). So I get the guys name, call back the 1-800 number for Amex and eventually get connected to the same guy. Felt like a dummy but hey, I don't trust anyone with stuff like this (no insecurity issues, really). OK, the guy from Amex tells me that someone charged $300+ dollars on body building supplement powders from a shop in Iowa. Not me says I, I'm skinny as a tape worm host and run marathons. He says no prb, they denied the charges and will send me a new card next day delivery. The guy wouldn't tell me how they knew it was a fraudulent charge, but only said they have sophisticated systems that can recognize patterns. Pretty cool right?

              So I go back to the bagel shop and tell the owner about what happened. I've used this place to cater parties for my kids at my house so he knows me, and I wanted him to know that he has some exposure. He gets defensive with me and says it could never be anyone on his staff. I explain to him that I'm helping him and he calms down. He ends up firing "the" guy two weeks later. Good for the loser.

              Watch your stuff folks......

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Credit Card Fraud

                I think the CC companies do a better job actively watching it. But I was still reimbursed of charges on my debit card. Now a decade ago, I would get calls about every other online purchase I made on my debit. (post OSUT, lots of money in the bank yay)

                Doesn't happen anymore.

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                • #9
                  Re: Credit Card Fraud

                  Originally posted by VICEROY06 View Post
                  So, I'm putting in an honest days work when I get an 800 number call on my cell. Obviously I ignore it thinking it was a telemarketer. I listen to the voicemail later and it's an automated message from USAA notifying me of a suspicious transaction. I immediately go online to check my account. Two transactions look very unfamiliar
                  I love USAA for this very reason. Had the same issue happen to me a few months back. BUT I screwed up and waited 3 days over the weekend to check the voicemail! Turns out though, that USAA stopped 3 different transactions-they were all *900+ airline ticket purchases out in Europe some where. Strange thing, that stopped it? They didnt have the CV code on the back. They had the card number though...they entered 3 wrong attempts at the CV code and whammo-USAA blocked. it *BIG SIGH*!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Credit Card Fraud

                    I was on a bus returning to my RTI last summer after Phase I OCS at AMA. I stop to use my USAA debit card at a gas station where we ate at Subway. I get a call from USAA about 15 minutes later stating they de-activated my card. Turns out the gas station we stopped at was in GA which threw a red-flag, they called my wife, and she suspended the card.

                    The other half of that story is that same day before we left AMA, two separate purchases were made on iTunes with my card number for over $200 each. What the heck is someone going to buy $400 worth of on friggin iTunes? Since I was still on communication lockdown at Ft. McClellan at that point, no way I made thaose purchases, so USAA smartly notified my wife. I most definitely couldn't blame her for shutting off the card when she saw another fishy purchase!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Credit Card Fraud

                      Originally posted by Fmr Devil Dog View Post
                      Yeah, debit cards are a big nay-nay. You've got way more protection with a credit card than with a debit card. Check this out... I'm buying bagels for my crew at work on Friday and forgot I that I didn't have cash on me. No prb, I'll use my Amex. About 15:00 I get a call from Amex Fraud telling me I have some suspicous activity on my account. The call's from India, and in my line of business I get a million calls from India every day, and I don't trust no one on the phone who's talking about my Amex acct (especially from India). So I get the guys name, call back the 1-800 number for Amex and eventually get connected to the same guy. Felt like a dummy but hey, I don't trust anyone with stuff like this (no insecurity issues, really). OK, the guy from Amex tells me that someone charged $300+ dollars on body building supplement powders from a shop in Iowa. Not me says I, I'm skinny as a tape worm host and run marathons. He says no prb, they denied the charges and will send me a new card next day delivery. The guy wouldn't tell me how they knew it was a fraudulent charge, but only said they have sophisticated systems that can recognize patterns. Pretty cool right?

                      So I go back to the bagel shop and tell the owner about what happened. I've used this place to cater parties for my kids at my house so he knows me, and I wanted him to know that he has some exposure. He gets defensive with me and says it could never be anyone on his staff. I explain to him that I'm helping him and he calms down. He ends up firing "the" guy two weeks later. Good for the loser.

                      Watch your stuff folks......
                      I don't get anyone that steals CC numbers nowadays. Though debt cards don't get the same protection as credit cards and AMEX, your money will still get refunded if the purchases are deemed fraudulent. Way back when I was in undergrad my bank sent me a box of new checks. Problem is, the apartment complex I lived in had those ancient exposed mailboxes with the flap top.

                      The checks never showed up. Next thing I know I go to the bank to withdraw some money (yeah it was that long ago) and there's only a few bucks left. Long story short, some chick took my box of checks out of my mailbox and passed my checks from Tuscaloosa all the way up to Huntsville AL over 200 miles North. All my money was refunded and I even got a report that the chick was arrested.

                      Back in the day a person would have been S.O.L. but nowadays, especially with credit cards, if a thief deviates from the cardholder's normal spending pattern their spending spree hits a dead in real quick. And if they have the good fortune of stealing from a guy like me that used to make a living tracking jackasses electronically they end up in jail before the receipt on their fraudulent purchase hits the bag.

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