My Debit Card was Stolen
I try to be happy and positive but every once in a while I’m reminded that there are harsh realities.
My husband and I went shopping for things for the house and once we got to the second store he realized he couldn’t find his debit card he used to pay at the first store. We immediately checked the shopping bags because he was sure he dropped it in one of them while trying to carry everything to the car. Since I worked at a bank for 4 years in the past I knew we needed to be more urgent about this. So we decided it’s best to just call and cancel the card right away (it had been 15 minutes since losing the card by this point). It felt like such a long wait for an operator since everything in the world now is automated. But we finally spoke to someone who quickly canceled the card at a $20 fee. We checked with him to see if there had been any charges on the card since we last used it (now 25 minutes since we lost the card). He said no and we were so happy to have dodge a bullet there! We would be expecting a new card in the mail in a week in a half. Well, my husband decides, once we got home, to check his card again online. Turns out, hundreds of dollars worth was spent at Sprint right after we canceled. Just under $1000. The operator must not have seen it since it hadn’t gone through just yet. sigh I just have to say. I’m not even as mad about losing the money as I am disappointed in the person for picking it up and using it. For all they know the cardholder needed that money for rent, or something bigger! (We didn’t but what if we did!?) I will never understand thievery. We were so disappointed. So disappointed. The operator told us that the charges could possibly fall off in a few days. But if it does end up going through completely, to call in a few days and then make a dispute. I looked at my poor husband and felt so helpless. I wanted to reassure him of something better. But I didn’t really know what to say. So instead he looked at me and said “it will all work out in the end honey”.
Please, everyone, take even quicker action than we did. I feel so bad and I feel like it’s my fault for not calling and canceling sooner. Maybe it’s because of my bank experience that I’m taking the blame. I don’t know.
I’d like to keep thinking that there are more honest people in the world than dishonest people.
Sorry to hear what happened, but I am wondering, how did the thief manage to use the card at all? Usually all cards, credit and debit alike, have a pin number, without which no transactions are possible. Or you have to sign for the transactions. Additionally, most cards I know (especially debit cards) have a limit of transactions and amount of money spent in a certain amount of time.
I don’t know what bank you’re with, but I see several issues with this.
1) They cancelled the card for a fee? What bank charges you for an emergency procedure that is in their own best interest?
2) Apparently your bank has no safety procedures in place to prevent fraudulent use (as in limiting amounts spent and number of transactions made)
3) I am probably with the crappiest bank in this country, but I still can freeze my account within about a minute through their automated system. ANY actions afterwards, even those which were pending at the time, will be rejected by the bank, meaning, I won’t lose money.
So I don’t understand how that could happen in the first place. If your bank really has the audacity to charge you with all that money, I’d certainly dispute it, ESPECIALLY since it is their fault that it took you so long to cancel the card. And it might sound petty, but I would insist on getting the $ 20 for the cancellation back as well, and then change to a different bank.
Well, if they used the signature, at least it should be relatively easy for you to dispute it. Nobody learns to fake a signature within a few minutes, so it should be easy to spot that the signature has been falsified. And it’s the shop’s problem if they haven’t verified the signature, so hopefully you shouldn’t have too much trouble disputing those charges.
Fingers crossed that it all works out for you. Despite everything, stuff like that just sucks, and makes me really angry.
On the good side, I lost my bank card a few weeks back when getting into the car. Not only did somebody pick it up and bring it to the little corner shop I’d been to, the owner (who undoubtedly knows my pin number by now) went through some trouble to find my phone number out and let me know where it was. So, there are some good people out there after all.
Emerald, so sorry to hear of that happening to you. I don’t use a debit card or have any credit card linked to my checking account. Here is what I do. I use adidas flux a credit card and deduct the charges out of my checking account just like it was a debit card than pay the entire balance off when the bill comes in. When I write out my check I don’t have to deduct it (I just note I wrote it) because it’s already been deducted. It’s easier to dispute a credit card if you lose it or someone gets your number and that way someone can’t wipe out your checking account. My late husband taught me a lot about protecting myself.
It’s scary to think that someone was able to put so many charges on your card in so little time. You should report it to the police as well. Often the banks want a police report. and just maybe they can get a hold of a video from the store to see who used your card.
wow so sorry to hear about your experiance Emerald! It is sad when we realize that there are bad people out there.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve used my debit cards/credit cards and not had anyone check my ID or signature line. I can’t tell you how many times! That store should be at least somewhat responsible for allowing that to happen.
Do you feel almost like this was a personal attack on you??? Reason I ask is b/c once the week after dale earnheardt died, my 3 jacket was stolen, along with my car keys and cell phone in the pocket. While I know this person didn’t know me from adam, I couldn’t help but feel the attack was personal. Just wondering if you had the same feeling???
anyways, I hope this mess gets straightened out and they catch the creep!
I used to work for mcdonalds (nothing flash haha) and any time someone would sign for their credit/debit card I would ask to see the card. It became a habit for me. One day a lady came in ordered about $15 worth of food and signed with some adidas flux random looking scribble as usual I asked for a look at her card she sighed extremely frustrated with the request i saw the card had no signature she snatched it away from me and stormed off with her food. I was shocked at how rude she was. But I h adidas flux ave always wondered about that incident.
I’m not even sure what you can do in that situation. I asked a manager and he just said not to worry it was “just $15″ but it really annoyed me that some people kinda just don’t care.
Sorry to hear about your card. I hope everything works out when you dispute it.
I used to work at McDonalds for a few years, part of the time as a manager. We had it drilled into our heads to compare signatures. If the card wasn’t signed, it wasn’t valid, and the customer wouldn’t be served. They were pretty strict (but that’s about 15 years ago), so in your case, what the woman did would have counted as theft, and fraud (for using an invalid bank card).
The answer ‘It was only $15′ would have gotten my fired before I could finish the sentence, but it seems they are a bit more lenient everywhere else. Our inspectors and general manager were just totally paranoid. lol
Call your bank manager and get that fee waived. In no way, shape or form is the bank supposed to charge you for canceling a debit card. That is a completely bullshit fee and you need to talk to your bank manager to waive that fee.
Also, contact the Sprint store in which these purchases were made. Yes, disputing the charges with your bank is good, but you also need to contact the Sprint store where the card was used. If it was used online, contact Sprint, give them your bank information and tell them what happened.
I was a victim of identity theft a few years ago and I had to go through all of this before. Unfortunately, your bank isn’t going to do shit for you. It’s not their money that was lost, so they won’t do anything for you.
You have to contact all of the places where purchases were made and talk to them yourself. Personally c adidas flux ontact all of those places and put in a formal complaint to dispute the charges. Write down the names of the employees you talk to, what time you called, what was discussed (etc). Every little bit helps. If you can’t prove that you didn’t make those purchases, you’ll never get that money back I didn’t. Why? Because, the purchases made from my stolen debit card information were all made online and I couldn’t prove that I wasn’t the one sitting in front of the computer on which the debit card was used. And, because I didn’t contact all of the stores/sites myself to dispute the charges, I’m still out almost $3,000.