Our Credit Card Number is Stolen. Note the wording. Our number and not the credit card was stolen. The thieves simply copied the number from somewhere and that code on the back, made another card, and were in business.
The credit card company called, asking if we were buying or had authorized anybody to buy anything with our credit card in Springfield, Pennsylvania, about 700 miles from where I was sitting at the moment. We’ve never been in Springfield, Pa. and have no idea where it is.
That was bad enough, but there was something even more sinister. I’ve talked to enough people in my day, or interviewed them for stories, or whatever terminology one chooses to use, to key on the inflections in people’s voices, because they often tell you more than what the person is actually saying at the time. Then I use that inflection to question further for more info, which might wind up being where the real story is.
Although we had done business with this credit card company for a number of years, the person calling seemed inclined to think I was not telling the truth. I suppose they thought if I disavowed the use of the credit card, I wouldn’t have to pay for whatever charges were made on the credit card in Springfield, Pa. that I legitimately owed by some bizarre circumstance. I should have called them on it at the time, but I was more interested in stopping the illegal use of our credit card, before the thieves’ tab reached into the thousands, if it hadn’t already.
When we were finally able to move on beyond my honesty, the credit card company caller then told me what had gone down at that point. The thieves must have made a trial run when they bought about $60 or $70 worth of merchandise in a Target store. They came back to the same location later to secure $100 in cash.
That is when the question arose as to the legitimacy of the person in possession of the credit card. Whether or not this was a call while the person was being detained in the store, I don’t know. The credit card company would not tell me. I wanted to know.
I also wanted to know who stole our credit card number locally to set this whole crime in motion. We use our credit card for convenience, not debt, therefore the use is limited.
We thought we had a good idea where the thief occurred, K-Mart/Sears, but couldn’t be sure unless the credit card company confirmed it by questioning the person who was using the card illegally, and they revealed that information to us.
If this info was not available now, I insisted the credit card company call me with that info when it was available. Good luck on that one. I never heard from them on it.
Had I known where the thievery occurred, I’d have gone down and confronted the store. I say store, because I would have talked to everyone in the store until they gave me satisfactory answers.
Never happening to us before, we were devastated, but I may not live in the modern world. Friends of ours told us they have their credit card numbers stolen quite often. I’m not sure whether that relates to the hacking of various stores’ info which is on the news about every third day, or on an individual basis.
I assume the credit card company wrote off whatever resulted monetarily in the illegal use of our credit card, because we were not billed for it.
I’d like to be able to tell everyone how to prevent your credit card number from being stolen. I can’t.