Valuable Lessons in Bank Fraud

Well, if you wondered if I had dropped off of the face of the earth, I can assure you that I have not. But I have felt “other worldly” at times since my last new post.

First of all my bank was one of the ones that uses that “EX” credit check company. So I went ahead and canceled all of my credit cards and ordered new numbers. I also had to close and move my checking account to a new number, with new checks and credit/debit cards.

If that wasn’t enough when the old account was closed, I had to look up every business I paid through my bank. That means name, phone number, address, and account number so I could pay online from my bank! I divided them up and tackled gathering all of that information over two afternoons.

My life became more complicated when I noticed a draft on my checking account on August 28 for $166.02. Normally this would not be a problem, except the draft was made by a telephone company I had closed my account with about four years earlier. It also knocked my balance down!!

The bank(?) said that the draft came from my computer’s specific IP address, so I did it! But I persevered. I asked the bank to refile for fraudulent draft because  (duh!) computers can be hacked! The bank’s fraud department replied with a report that I had obviously ” benefited from the draft.”(?)

I called the bank’s company fraud specialist. She was very helpful and could see the obvious problems with the drafts. Next she and I talked with the phone company’s fraud investigator.  My advocate presented the facts and explained that my business with that company had ended four years earlier! Then I asked how they thought I had benefited from the draft.

They pointed out that the first draft had gone through. I looked on the bank statement and there was a draft dated August 16 for $82.51! Because it went through, they assumed that I had benefited from the draft and refused to reimburse me!! I hadn’t even noticed it!

Thankfully the phone company’s fraud representative noticed that the phone account number written on the draft was not my phone account number!!

Finally I was vindicated!! The re-imbursment check for $248.53 arrived the other day. So it took over one and a half months to finally resolve this! Boy am I glad it’s all over!!

Valuable lessons were learned from these experiences.

1. Verify amounts, business name, account numbers and even dates on all drafts or payments on your checking and credit card accounts daily

2. If you know that something was not your fault, stand your ground politely but firmly. There is nothing wrong with showing a little exasperation but never be rude. Just have all of your information in front of you so you don’t have to go looking for it.

3. Ask for an advocate from your bank to be with you on the phone to help verify what was done wrong and answer any account questions.. Be sure your bank’s representative is fully on board with defending and helping you. That is their responsibility! (Besides they let a draft go through that was not even under my present phone account’s name or number!)

4. Ask for a detailed explanation if a request for reimbursement is refused. Ask the 4 W questions: Who, What, Why, Where, When and then How!

Stay tuned for new adventures in post operative rehabilitation after foot surgery!


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