mdchachi - My Random Thoughts Blog
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2005/08/07 11:03 EDT
Credit card fraud followup
As I mentioned July 9th, I was a credit card fraud victim. I was able to determine that they had my name, address, phone number and the 3 digits on the back of the card. Luckily my identity or other cards don't seem to be involved. I used that card everywhere so it could have been compromised just about anywhere. Though I suspect it could be from one of the recent data breaches at the credit card processor level. The thing that doesn't make sense about the whole thing, though, is that the fraudulently ordered goods started arriving at my home address. Why the heck would somebody make fraudulent credit card purchases but send them to the home owner? I don't live in an area where people could easily grab the packages off my front porch. Or, I suppose they could, but they didn't. I got them. Vitamin pills. DVD player. I asked the credit card issues what to do and they said just put return-to-sender and send them back. They also ordered magazines and automobile road service in my name.

After going through this, though, now it's pretty clear to me why the credit card issuers don't put as much effort into combating fraud as you might expect. It's because the party most at risk is the merchant. They send out the merchandise and then the payment is taken from them. If I hadn't returned their stuff, they would have been shafted completely. They still had to take a hit on the shipping costs. So they are in a catch 22 and have to accept fraud as a cost of doing business. Consumers have to deal with the inconvenience and the mess. And credit card issuers, for the most part, keep making hefty profits. Fortunately in this case, though, it wasn't a big hassle for me. All I had to do was sign an affidavit that the purchases weren't mine and were unauthorized.

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