I received a call recently from my credit card company. It was a callback that I'd requested in order to advise them I had a change of address. Apparently the customer service rep I spoke with a couple of days earlier was not qualified to change addresses!? Anyway suffice to say that they did indeed call me back. This is how the conversation went:
Rep: "Hello is that Miss Murray?"
Me: "Yes, hello"
Rep: "Hello Miss Murray it's xxxxxxx.Credit Card company phoning regarding your change of address"
Me: " Yes that's right, I have a new address"
Rep: "No problem Miss Murray. I just need to run through some security questions with you"
Normally at this point I remind them that it was they who had rung me and I would refuse to prove I was in fact the person they had rung.
I did this once with my mobile phone company and she suggested I call them back on a specific number in order to verify it was indeed them. She failed to realise that she had actually done the exact same thing. By phoning me on my mobile number (issued by them) wasn't adequate proof that I wasn't an impostor. Yet they expected me to phone their number (not issued by me) and be satisfied that they were genuine. For all I know it could have been some cowboy outfit with access to thousands of phone number scamming us by pretending to be a well known mobile co. and accessing our personal information. I knew it wasn't but out of principal I didn't call them back.
On this occassion however I had to get my address changed and apparently this was the only way possible despite all the advances in technology and the numerous means of communicating at our disposal. I was also expecting this call and so had no reason to be suspicious. I took a deep breath and proceeded to answer the following
Rep: "Can you confirm your full name please"?
Oh I soo wanted to snap back "You've been calling me by it for the last few minutes!". However I refrained and through gritted teeth gave him my full name.
Rep: "Can I have your full date of birth please". Again I answered, trying to remain ever so polite and not burst into some angry rant.
Rep: "Can I have the last four digits of your credit card please Miss Murray?"
I don't know how I was holding it together but I played along.
You would think by now that would be enough. They had phoned me, I'd confirmed my full name, d.o.b and last 4 digits of my card surely all suspicion that I was a fraudster would be removed. But there was more....
Rep: " Can I have the first and third letter of your password?"
Surely now this would suffice??What next? My vital statistics?!!
Rep continues "can you please tell me Miss Murray the last two recent purchases made with your credit card?".
I actually could not remember what these were as fortunately I do not use this card very often and I didn't think it was that crucial in the crusade against identity theft. I really wanted to argue this point with him but I'd got this far I didn't want to risk being cut off and having to go through the entire ridiculous process again. He must have sensed by now that I was at the end of my tether...I was practically hissing the answers out...and so the perverse little creature decided to punish me further...
Rep admonishes me " Well in that case Miss Murray please provide me with your email address?" Good grief!!
Clearly this is how he gets his kicks and I know why Rep # 1 was not qualified to deliver the change of address process. He obviously wasn't a member of the KGB's mental torture unit!!
Has the fight against identity fraud gone too far or was I just being a teeny wee bit premenstrual?