My Credit Card Got Hacked

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So yesterday morning I was hanging around the house when my phone rang. Another 800 number. Some solicitor. Sometimes I erase that kind of call without even listening to it. For some reason, I didn’t do that this time. And am I ever glad for that. It was my bank calling to ask if I’d charged $278 for a railroad ticket in Austria. NOOOOO. The closest I’ve ever come to Austria is my grandmother on my dad’s side. Then I got patched in to the Fraud Lady, who immediately closed my credit card account.

In the afternoon I went with a friend to a shopping mall. She got busy searching for a pair of jeans while I wandered aimlessly. The cash in my pocket was all I had to spend. It was an odd feeling but it also made me think twice about everything I looked at. Do I REALLY need those shoes for $65? Do I REALLY need that Annie’s pretzel with the cheese dip, which would set me back about $3.50? Could I live without the T-shirt on sale for $14? Having cash only made me think about everything. It was a great experiment that everyone should try.

But it also reminded me of a time, back in 1998, when I cut up my credit card and lived without one for five years. Why? Because I had gotten myself into credit card debt to the tune of $22K. I paid off the debt when I sold my house and then only got another card when I was truly convinced I would never get into debt again. I’m happy to report that I completely pay off my balance each month, and have done so for the past six years.

7 Responses to “My Credit Card Got Hacked”

  1. Penny Says:

    drat! Do they have any idea how it happened?

    Hope it isn’t another big – everybody’s numbers get changed crime. I hate it when that happens and actually stopped using the main card I had because they kept changing our account number. That would mean a lot of work for me with the items I have charged to that card each month.

    It takes a smart person to do what you did with your card. I was really glad we had no debt when my husband’s job was eliminated. Being free of debt really gives you lots of options and freedom. And, trying to stay that way helps you make better choices.

  2. MyRakesBack Says:

    I recently had the same problem however I purchased a product from a website (a T-Shirt) from someone who I was following on Twitter and that same day a $99.28 purchase was made from a company in Singapore from my account. I don’t know anyone there, nor have I made any business plans there yet it happened but my banks fraud department shut my card down. Now I have to wait 4-10 days for a new card, but its like they say cash is king.

  3. morrison Says:

    Hmmmm? Did you check to see later on if it really was your bank? Did the phone call or switch to the Fraud Lady ask for your account info?

    Just wondering.

  4. Duchess Says:

    My credit identity was stolen last spring — that is, they had no numbers, but just with my name, address and birthdate the baddies managed to get stuff sent using my credit rating. They either hang out outside the house and intercept parcels or pretend to be the people collecting the item when, as they assume, you call up and say you didn’t order it. In one week I got 2 iphones, a laptop computer, and a Blackberry. The baddies got one laptop. Striking rate of 1 in 6, but I guess if you repeated it a few times the crime would pay.

    The police are totally uninterested in identity theft. It caused me a lot of bother.

    I try not to have cash, though. It just flows through my hands. I think of it as play stuff. The plastic is real.

  5. Hattie Says:

    Lately I’ve been hearing more about credit card fraud and worrrying some about it. But credit cards are such a convenience. We never run up debts on ours. I think it’s because we both hate to shop!

  6. Emily Says:

    Sorry about the fraud – maybe it’s a sign from G-d that you need to go to Europe to get a Eurrail pass and have a little fun!

  7. Kaye Swain Says:

    I’m so glad they caught it for you so quickly! :) I really appreciate that I also have a very proactive credit card company. I dropped one of my cards at a gas station last spring without realizing it. Someone found it and immediately used it three times before my fraud person called me and also stopped the credit card. It can sometimes be frustrating when I am traveling and they call, but overall, I’m very appreciative of them too!

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