Home > ID Theft #2...

ID Theft #2...

July 4th, 2008 at 06:03 pm


I guess I am lucky I have had credit cards for 15 years or so and only lately have I had any fraudulent experiences.

But it's catching up with me!

Last year my identity was stolen - someone had my name/maiden name, address, DOB, SS#, etc.

They opened up quite a few cards and maxed out about $30k in two days.

It was rather simple to resolve (so obviously fraudulent), but not exactly fun all the same.

Anyway, I was at a loss since I do everything "right." I still don't know where the security breach came from. My best guess is some government agency or somewhere I keep investments. Though I am painfully aware there are what seems hundreds of places where this info could have been stolen from. There is little anyone can do really, we put so much faith in those that hold this information (our banks, investment houses, and the IRS, etc.).

Anyway, fast forward to today. I had a card with 1% cash back that I used for many years. I keep it as a backup card for now, since we upgraded to the Chase Freedom which has more cash rewards.

They called me and told me there was suspicious activity on the account. Since I have not used it in a long while, I though, "Oh oh."

Of course, last time some bank I never heard of called and asked for my SS#. & we went round and round because I wouldn't give it - but it ended up being a legit fraud department and was one call that helped me clear all this up fast.

So as I sat on hold I am googling their phone # all over the place thinking this sounds really legit (it's an insurance company which I am guessing is more rare for a Visa). But hell if I am going to give my personal info.

So anyway, thank goodness they did not ask. I would have had to get back to them once I verified the #. I have always been paranoid in that regard.

Well, dh was out so I checked where the cards were real quick and both his and mine were in my wallet actually.

So they asked if I had bought airline tickets yesterday, and I said no, and that was pretty much that.

Taken care of.

But I am just peeved.

I was just having a discussion with an older person yesterday about online security. I was telling them about my ID theft and I Was much more worried about paper and computer records than my online purchasing activites.

I admit that this was a card I used often in years past so I am mostly stuck to at a loss as to where the breach happened.

I guess it wasn't necessarily online.

But, ugh...

Happy July 4th to me!

5 Responses to “ID Theft #2...”

  1. Aleta Says:

    So sorry to hear about this. We also had some problems. Last year we were in Orlando and the credit card company said that someone tried to open up an application in my name. I had gone to a restaurant there and you know how that goes, they take your card and anyone could get your information.

    Two months ago, my husband's credit card had charges for almost $800. (fraudulent activity) and they were all high-end women's stores. The only time that his card was out of sight was at a restaurant.

    We recently went to Outback's for my husband's birtday and I would not let them take my card. The waiter said, " I can't deal with this. I'm going to get the owner." Next thing, the owner comes over and asks us if everything was OK and we said yes and he took my card. I don't like the idea that people can take your card, possibly swipe it in a machine and bette yet - have the 3 numbers on the back of your card. By the way - whoever got my husband's card had it duplicated very nicely according to the investigators.


  2. monkeymama Says:

    That's the scary thing is it wasn't out of our sight for the last year at LEAST! But doesn't mean it wasn't swiped somewhere down the road. IT is crazy out there.

  3. fern Says:

    Aleta, you are definitely right. Restaurants pose a very high risk of ID theft becus the waiter/waitress always walks away with your card and you can't see what they're doing with it when it's out of sight. The device they use to skim credit cards is very slim and could easily be hidden in a hand or pocket. At restaurants i would make a point of paying cash.

    Nothing will eliminate all chance of ID theft, but you can place a freeze on your credit reports by paying about $10 (depending on your state's rules) to each of the 3 credit reporting bureaus: Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. The freeze means that if anyone tries to open a new credit card or any kind of credit account in your name, they won't be able to, becus the lender (or credit card company) always checks your credit history, and if there's a freeze on it, they won't be able to and they'll reject the application. Obviously, if you anticipate applying for a loan, like a car loan, mortgage or student loan, in the near future, it doesn't make sense to do a credit freeze but otherwise, it's not a bad idea. You can always "unfreeze" your credit reports, but you have to pay another $10 or so each time you do that. It's something to consider, especially if you've already been a victim.

  4. frugaltexan75 Says:

    I've been there. I'm on my 3rd account # in less than two years, thanks to fraudulent activity. I use this card for just about *everything* so have no idea where they might have gotten the info. Luckily, both times, it was caught my the cc company and all I had to do was say I hadn't made those charges and then sign an affidavit.

    I'm guessing you're not going to be canceling your credit alert program?

  5. monkeymama Says:

    I am going to cancel the monitoring service still, because this was my existing account. & I do have a fraud alert on my credit for a few years. I know not everyone will check my credit, but anything like the last time would be caught immediately. For now they have been good about calling me every time I apply for a card or do anything. Though I understand some companies don't check your credit and ignore fraud alerts.

    I don't want to freeze it now, but is also something I may do for the long run. Probably. I am just in the middle of so much stuff I didn't want to freeze it now. & I still want to research more how that affects our insurance premiums. But it seems like the best solution overall. I guess is the other nice thing to be in our situation. No plans to apply for any loans, like ever, so we can freeze the credit. Phew!!!

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