Have you been hit by Fraud? (in Off-topic)

Mem October 15 2007 6:46 PM EDT

So I'm doing my laundry today, minding my own business, when I get a call from a random 800 number. I'm rather confused because the actual number showed up, so I answer. It turns out that it's the Fraud Department. They ask me if I made any purchases at Wal-Mart in Los Angeles, California today. I replied, "The only place I've been is the laundromat a mile away from my apartment." They then ask if I made any purchases in Arkansas, Maryland, Texas and New York. The last time I was in any of those states was at least 4 years ago, and I've never even been to Maryland. I tell them this. I'm a victim of fraud. By my calculations, after carefully sifting through my account transactions, I'm out $376.34. Luckily for me I loaned most of the money I had to my parents before this all went down. My cards are all canceled, but the damage is done.

So what are your stories about being hit by fraud? Did you ever get your money back? Is there hope for me?

Zoglog[T] [big bucks] October 15 2007 6:51 PM EDT

I had someone use my mobile phone number on one of those ringtone subscriptions before they required a confirmation SMS. By the time I realised each message they were sending me was costing me money (I assumed it was just advertisements at the time) I had a bill of about 120 which my service provider told me I could not claim back.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] October 15 2007 6:53 PM EDT


The card companies should be able to get your money back to you, but I'd be really interested in how my data got out there in the first place...

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] October 15 2007 6:54 PM EDT

Someone recently bought ACDSee Pro 2 with one of my unused credit card, I got it off my card, but it pissed me off. That's pretty much the reason I don't have a Debt card with a credit card number on it... still ;)

QBJohnnywas October 15 2007 7:05 PM EDT

My mum's credit card company recently phoned her up because purchases were being made in Germany by her card. My mum's not been out of the UK for nearly 50 years!

The purchases amounted to nearly £2000 sterling, which amounts to what? 4k USD? Anyway, they stopped the card immediately and refunded the card, once it had gone through the necessary police investigation.

That's a UK based company however; and it was they who flagged it up as suspicious, not my mum, which probably helped her.

Best of luck for you though. I'll keep my fingers crossed for ya!

Yukk October 15 2007 7:09 PM EDT

Someone made long distance calls with my Bell-linked phone card after I had cancelled my phone number and moved Provinces. Bell blamed me. I pointed out that the calls they listed were made 2 weeks after I had moved my phone account and refused to pay. Bell collectors kept bringing it up about every year for 5 years. It was a pain in the neck, but no actual loss to me apart from my credit record.
I'm guessing I dropped the card somewhere while cleaning or someone found it when dumpster diving. I should have chopped it up and been more careful with my personal info. Now I shred everything with a crosscut shredder. Hopefully it's easier to steal someone else's ID now.

AdminJonathan October 15 2007 7:39 PM EDT

In the USA credit cards are required by law to limit your liability to $50. Most waive even that much.

Debit cards are another story entirely. If a thief gets your PIN somehow he can wipe you out and the bank doesn't owe you a thing.

Thraklight Resonance October 15 2007 9:06 PM EDT

I shred all unsolicited credit card offers and mail them back to the banks in the pre-paid envelopes.

Adminedyit [Superheros] October 15 2007 9:10 PM EDT

that is a REALLY good idea thrak!! ;8^)

Thraklight Resonance October 15 2007 9:19 PM EDT

I occasionally put extra recyclable stuff in the envelopes of the ones that really annoy me. There's a bank in El Paso that sends me a credit offer once a month, so I save up their offers until I have five or six and send them out together. The last batch had the credit card offers and empty, flattened Marvel Super Hero candy stick boxes.

JaggedFel311 October 15 2007 10:22 PM EDT

Actually Jon for debit cards your liability is limited. If you notify a bank within 2 days of learning of the loss or theft of your debit card or PIN, your liability is limited to the lesser of $50 or the amount of the unauthorized transfers. If you don't notify within two days, your liability won't exceed $500. If you don't know that your card or info has been taken, and you notice an unauthorized transfer on your monthly statement, you have 60 days from receipt of the statement to notify the bank to avoid liability. If you don't notify the bank within 60 days, your liability can be more. "The consumer's liability shall not exceed the amount of the unauthorized transfers that occur after the close of the 60 days and before notice to the institution, and that the institution established would not have occurred had the consumer notified the institution with the 60-day period."

Please note, I'm not a commercial lawyer, but I did take the class in law school and had to answer questions about it on bar exams :)

I actually had my credit card "stolen" a couple years back. I say "stolen" in that I still had the card. The bank contacted me about some out of the ordinary purchases that took place in the Chicago area, which I hadn't been too in about 2 years. I forget the exact amount, but someone had charged a couple hundred bucks at a grocery store. According to the bank, my magnetic strip was most likely copied at some point at a restaurant or something where I gave the card to someone to take back to a machine and scan, then I got my card back and the magnetic strip was copied to another card, complete with new name and "card number." No idea how that works, but the bank said that it had been happening a lot recently. Closed my account, started a new one, and fortunately I wasn't liable for any of those purchases.

Mem October 15 2007 10:37 PM EDT

I wonder if credit unions have different ways of dealing with this type of stuff than do banks. I guess I'll find out in the morning.

SNK3R October 15 2007 11:41 PM EDT

I was hit by fraud when a guy fled his bail. He apparently used my Social Security Number as a faux number and my SSN account got charged about $50K.

Good times.

Goodfish October 16 2007 12:36 AM EDT

Being younger than most of you, I've never been the victim of fraud- I've been "legal" for less than a year, actually- but one of my close friends has already been a victim. Interestingly (and I find this hilarious), his identity was stolen so someone could pay for World of Warcraft. Every month, 20 dollars is stolen from him, and his bank reimburses him. There is nothing else he can do, at this point, since the bank is hoping the thief eventually exposes himself via another transaction.

So yeah. Some WoW addict stole my friend's identity. Sad but true.

drudge October 16 2007 3:17 PM EDT

my mom's card # must have been hacked off a server or sold to a high bidder along with others because boxers were purchased on her card and sent to pakistan.

silk boxers, lol. some un-classy thief in pakistan put like $60 worth of cheap silk boxers on a credit card. what a stupid criminal. of all the things you could order online, dude wants that.

Mem October 16 2007 5:53 PM EDT

Lucky for me I'm getting all the money back. It still sucks that I have to be without my debit card for at least a week.

karlos666uk October 16 2007 9:04 PM EDT

i moved house when i was 16 the next day i get sent a new card at my old address then i started work 2 weeks later and thought to myself my first full time pay packet yes :-)
then went to the bank and asked how much my balance was and a nice lady said 500 British pounds then she nicely said 500 pounds overdrawn i was like what how the hell ? i then found out some one went on a spending spree with my new debit card and spent 500 quid in less then an hour and by the time it was sorted out i was 1200($2400) pounds in dept until the police sorted it out :-) you would off thought the bank would stop charging interest but they don't.

i,m just glad i didn't have any money in my account to begin with but i do wish i new i could spend 500 quid on my card and not have any money in the account

MudBug The Redeemer October 18 2007 9:30 PM EDT

yea, about 3 weeks ago....

nothing like waking up to a phone call from the credit union and them telling all 4k of your account is gone. Got reinbursed for everything, but the whole thing took about a month and a half to iron out. 4 charges to a fake charity. gotta love it. afaik the fbi has the case now. oh and you MUST make a police report to get reinbursed for said charges, at least in ny.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] October 19 2007 8:54 AM EDT

Just after moving in with Claire we started getting a lot of stuff for our house.

Shopping one day all our card transactions were refused, we coldn't buy anything we shopped for on her cards.

We called and they had blocked her cards due to unusuall activity on her account (only rarely used her card previously, and only for small amounts).

For the next couple of weeks stores had to call the company for authorisation of sale any time she tried to buy anything on her cards.


We didn't complain.
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