Keys Disease

Keys Disease
Battling Keys Disease at the Futura Yacht Club in Islamorada, Fla. three years ago.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Mysterious Case of the Shrinking Bank Account

I had my first encounter with identity theft this week.

It was an eye opener.

The debit card for my Wells Fargo checking account was to expire in March of this year. Because the magnetic strip on the soon-to-be-expired card was wearing out and didn't work in certain readers, including the auto-pay lane at the Greenville-Spartanburg Airport, I have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of my new card. It was in my mailbox when I returned from Florida on Monday.

On my list of things to do on Tuesday was activating the new card. Big doin's at the Heaps hacienda, don't ya know?

Before activating the card, however, I wanted to double check and make sure that no automatic monthly deductions tied to my debit card had yet to clear. I was mostly concerned with my gym membership that usually appears toward the end of the month.

It, of course, hadn't come through, probably due to Presidents Day and the banks being closed. As I scrolled down the recent transactions, I noticed a charge for $10.70 that I didn't recognize. Then I found another and another and another. There were five of these $10.70 charges, all from the same vendor and all in the past five days.

They were online transactions for some pet med Web site that originated in Luxembourg.

I called the fraud line at Wells Fargo and explained the situation. The person I spoke with asked several questions about my habits using the card and who had access to it. I was given a reference number and told they were canceling that card and issuing a new one.

I had an e-mail from Wells Fargo this morning informing me that its investigation was complete and all the money had been redeposited into my account.

It wasn't big bucks, but the total represented a pretty good night out on the town -- even for me!

Glad I caught it early and that Wells Fargo was so easy to work with.

Another bullet dodged.   

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