You just never consider that it could happen to you…and then it does. Then you want to smack yourself in the head.

PSA for today: check your credit card transaction history every month. The sad tale:

I have a credit card through PayPal (a division of evilBay). The Thriller, who pays the bills online every month, noticed that the balance on this account — which he always paid in full — never stayed at zero. Each month, there was a thirty-some dollar charge. He kept paying it, assuming I was just making purchases with it. He even made mention of it once, several months ago: “Your PayPal MasterCard balance…I keep paying it off and it keeps coming back with money on it.” At the time, I think I had charged something online, and I told him so. The matter was dropped.

Then yesterday happened. Long story longer: I spent the entire afternoon on the phone with PP’s fraud department. Seems a lovely bunch of chaps in Great Britain have been charging $40 to my credit card every month since January, just for kicks and giggles — right under my nose.

There’s probably no way I’m going to get my $400 back — I mean, it’s been months and this is eBay, fuh cryin’ out loud, who don’t give a dinkly doo about their customers — but I am sixpence the wiser. Never again will I just assume all is well. Chicanery to the left of me; jugglery to the right. You just can’t trust anything these days. I feel violated and stupid.

So, fiends, a lesson for those who have credit accounts, and for those who might in the future: be suspicious all the time. Never assume your credit card company (or bank) is watching out for you. Don’t believe their hype about “red flagging fraud.” A bogus company that changes its name every month and has a US toll-free number (that doesn’t work, of course — I tried them all) but originates in the UK is not cause for a red flag in their software? I’m not shifting blame, mind. But geez. What a way to run a railroad…

Anyway, I’ve done the research, made records of all the fraudulent charges, compiled them into a report, filled out all the paperwork and faxed it in. And that is how I spent my Monday afternoon.



10 thoughts on “PSA IV

  1. RD

    I’ve never been on Ebay, but have heard of its poor customer service. I hope that in spite of the odds, that you get some satisfaction. More than a year ago, I was checking my credit card transactions online and discovered that someone had charged over $700 to it in Mexico for jewelry. I hadn’t been to Mexico, and I hadn’t lost my credit card. I phoned them immediately and they took it off of my account, closed that account and gave me a new account number. I have no complaints about how they handle this. I hope you have a similar outcome.

    1. Rat Fink Post author

      Hey I have firsthand experience with evilBay and their customer “service.”

      I hope I have some luck. The problem is that PP doesn’t honor disputes over 40 days old. It looks like you caught it right away. But then I listen to their yammering on the line while I’m on hold for 10 minutes how I’m “100% protected from fraud” and I think (hope) they might look kindly on my situation.

      Feh! Shyeah RIGHT

  2. BoomR

    I’ve been very fortunate with my Citi AAdvantage credit card (I get an AA mile for every $ I charge) :-) They have called me off & on a half-dozen times over the past few years verifying that I’m in possession of the card. I use it mostly for business trip expenses. I go for months with no charges, then all of a sudden, lots of charges in places like Las Vegas, New Orleans, New York, etc. Evidently they have some software algorithm that flags that sort of thing. Also if you use the card @ the pump & then have a bunch of charges, that flags your account, too. One time they even called & said that my card was in a batch of cards whose accounts were compromised, so they called to notify me they close the account & are re-issuing me a new card/account #.

    Now I know the last thing you probably want/need is another card, but I would definitely recommend Citi for a card if this is the way they do business :-)

    Hope you get it all sorted out, luv! ((SMEWCH))

    1. Rat Fink Post author

      Hey! Yeah, you have a great deal there for sure. Capital One has called me on occasion, too. Nice of them to do that! eBay struck a deal with MasterCard several years ago, and I went for it.

      I’m actually pretty well set with my Chase debit card — it gets me everything I need, and since it’s tied directly to my checking, I can’t overspend. I like that. :-) Maybe if I flew all over the place like you do, an AAdvantage card would suit me — but since I DON’T…heh.

      I plan to keep bothering those people until they do sort it out. Fie upon he who tries to separate the Fink from her funds!

      1. BoomR

        Oooo-weee! I forgot to tell you what came in the mail last week & this week!!

        Last week: The former owners of this house (the wife) received a brand new Visa debit card. In a separate email there was a notice from the bank of her new debit card PIN number.

        This week: A brand new box of checks for her checking account.

        Guess who’s gonna get EVERYTHING they want for Christmas! LOL

  3. Suzanne

    Not very smart blokes, were they, only taking $40 *hehehe* Yeesh I hope you get your funds back. How did these hooligans get your number in the first place?


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