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I'm now a victim of identity theft

02 March 2014, 13:05
I am now a victim of identity theft. I never dreamed that it would happen to me. Friday was a pleasant day with good accomplishments. I thought that I would begin the weekend relaxed.

Around five in the afternoon I got a low balance alert on my American Express prepaid card. I found this strange as the card had a balance of over $660.00. I opened up the transactions on the card and found a balance of $1.50. Someone had made $660 of unauthorized charges on the card for transactions with Home Depot and Exxon Mobil.

I called the American Express 800 number. Someone in India answered. They said that they could not help me because their computer system was not working. (This was ironic as I could see all of the transactions on my computer.)

I called back 30 minutes alter and got an Indian woman on the phone. She took note of the unauthorized transactions and suspended the card after quite a verbal battle. She then explained to me that I would have to call Home Depot and Exxon Mobil and set up conference calls with the American Express 800 number. Once the companies that had accepted the charges and agreed to reverse them, I could get these taken off the card.

This was either a woman relying on British common law in India (where consumers have far less protection against identity fraud than in the US) or trained to discourage customers from contesting identity fraud charges to save the company money.

I got very angry at this point. I explained to this lady that I had attended law school and worked at law firms as a para legal. I told her that I would file suit on Monday and make sure that the media heard about this situation. I assured her that such an outcome would cause cost American Express far more than than the $660 in question. I told her that I was going to stay on the phone all night long. I intended to go all the way up to the managing director of American Express in India to get some resolution.

I was then sent to this woman's supervisor. He was a more rational and knowledgeable man. He agreed to get the charges reversed once final settlement had taken place on Monday afternoon or Tuesday morning.

There is that old saying with two variations as follows:

"It's not a deal until the check clears the bank."

"It's not over until the fat lady sings."

We will see what happens next week. American Express is generally"a class act" and a group of ladies and gentleman. I'm very disappointed in them. But I can imagine what some worst companies would have done in this situation.

My friends the message here is that if you get hit with identity fraud, as the old saying goes: "You're in for the ride of your life." In this situation you are also: "guilty until proven innocent." I strongly urge each of you to buy an identity fraud insurance police from a reputable insurance company like State Farm or one of the major credit bureaus.Like ·  · Share · 2 seconds ago · 
Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

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