Saturday, May 16, 2009

That Phone Call - Fraud Protection

Not sure what to make of this one. I think it may be a case of mistaken identity.


Caller: Hi, my name is Laura. I'm calling from the Bank of America Fraud Protection department. Don't worry, there is nothing wrong with any of your accounts.

Ducheznee: Hi Laura. I'm not worried.

Laura: Is this Mr. [my name]?

Ducheznee: This is he.

Laura: I'm calling to discuss one of our security products that I think you will find quite interesting. Is this a good time?

Ducheznee: Yes, it is. What would you like to talk about?

Laura: [Laura proceeds to describe the same "protect your accounts" monthly service fee program that is advertised in every credit card statement and every bank statement that passes through the US Postal Service.]  So you receive all of that plus free credit report monitoring all for $7.95 a month.

Ducheznee: That program sounds fairly common. I've seen advertisement for something very similar from my credit card company and from my bank. Assuming I were interested, how would I proceed from this point.

Laura: Oh, we'll just deduct the cost of the program from your checking account each month.

Ducheznee: Really? And how do you intend to do that?

Laura: It will be an electronic transaction.

Ducheznee: I'm sorry. I mean, how do you intend to gain access to my accounts?

Laura: Oh, we already have a record of all of your accounts.

Ducheznee: You do? You have access to all of my accounts at [XYZ] Bank?

Laura: No, just your Bank of America accounts.

Ducheznee: I don't have any accounts with Bank of America.

Laura: That's odd. But you are Mr. [me] at [my phone number]?

Ducheznee: That's me. I haven't had an account at Bank of America for at least 15 years.

Laura: So your phone number is [my phone number]?

Ducheznee: That is the number you just dialed to reach me.

Laura: And you are Mr. [my name]?

Ducheznee: Yes, I am. Is it possible that you may be looking for another Mr. [my name] and somehow, some computer has linked in my phone number?

Laura: And you're positive you don't have any accounts with Bank of America? Maybe a mortgage?

Ducheznee: I used to have a checking and savings account at Bank of America, but closed them when your company tried to strong arm the Boy Scouts of America and force them to have gay scoutmasters as role models for young boys learning to become men.

Laura: I'm sorry. I'm not sure why your name and phone number are in our database if you don't have any accounts with us. I apologize for the interruption.

Ducheznee: No problem at all. Have a good day.


Everyone is entitled to receive one free copy of their credit report annually from each of the three credit reporting agencies. There are many web sites out that use similar language in an attempt to trick you into using their paid service. Don't be fooled. The Federal Trade Commission endorses only There is no cost for this. If you're asked to pay anything, you're on the wrong web site.

There is also a company [link to be included later if I can track it down] that nationally syndicated radio talk show host Lars Larson endorses. They charge a one-time fee of $5.00 to do the same thing mentioned above. I have not yet checked them out, but I respect and trust Mr. Larson's endorsement. I do intend to research the company in question when I have some time.

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