I received an account statement for my Chase Platinum Visa credit card today and was shocked to discover new charges. It is surprising, because this credit card has never been used for purchases. There was one balance transfer that was done at the opening of the account to take advantage of a 0% APR for a year promotion. Since the opening of the account in September 2004, I have only made payments with a consistent value. During this statement period, fraudulent purchases were made at various online retailers. My statement had charges that totaled approximately 800USD, and after I contacted Chase Visa, I learned that there were additional charges made since the statement was printed that totaled an additional 2000USD.
This is the second time that I have been a victim of credit card fraud in the last two years. The other credit card that was compromised was a Fleet Platinum Visa card. I also opened that account with a balance transfer (this is actually the same balance that I transferred to Chase), but the credit card was compromised before I even received the physical credit card through the mail. Basically, two balance transfers were done on my credit card, one that was actually mine and another to credit an unknown person’s account.
There was an instance where Discover credit card actively contacted me to verify purchases that I made at a city that was approximately 35 miles from my home. Those purchases totaled less than 100USD, but Discover became concerned because I used my Discover credit card at several places in a city that I previously had not frequented. Obviously, the Discover representative did not give me special attention nor continually watched my account throughout the month. The representative was most likely alerted by a software application.
Apparently all the computational power that Chase possesses could not detect the drastic change in spending behavior that credit card companies are known to track. I had a purchase history with Chase: I have never made a purchase on their card. Yet, their systems did not alert a representative when the credit card balance exceeded my credit limit and expensive purchases were made at an alarming rate within a very short time interval. The change in purchasing behavior is so obvious, I would expect even a piece of poorly written security software to have detected it. I can only hope that Chase’s resolution is more timely than that of Fleet.