In search of what's next

Thursday, October 27, 2005

I've already lost it

Have you heard of this study yet? It says there's a study showing internet users are losing trust in/on the internet. Shucks, I lost that a long time ago. It still doesn't stop me from using it.

I even thought of some of the ways I could combat identity theft on line. One of the ways the Mrs. & myself followed up on this was to get a separate credit card to use just on line and put a low credit limit on it, like 500$. Worse case, if it got stolen, I'd only have to argue with the credit card company for about 500$, not something much larger.

Don't let anyone fool you about this. That was a wasted effort it would seem. You see, our normal credit card we used for every day things like gas purchases, going out to eat, Christmas gifts etc, was never used on line. We only used it in brick and morter joints.

The reality of it was if the brick and morter joint also did business on the web, then your credit card is subject to getting stolen on line. This happened to us. Fortunately, my wife was bouncing from credit card to credit card trying to get those freebie things with rewards, so she'd switch cards every 3 or 4 months. Because this one card had an exceptionally high credit limit on it, she kept it active, but we just didn't use it for about 8 months.

She gets a call at work from the bank that sponsored the card asking her if we had started to use the card again. Strange, that they'd call us like this. Anyway, my wife asked why and they said someone had attempted to purchase music equipment and computer equipment on line the previous evening and after several missed attempts, they had finally guessed the expiration date and made a successful purchase of about 800$ with it. My wife wasn't sure, because if I had suddenly went willy nilly with the credit card, music & computer stuff would've been where I spent it at the moment!

Turns out the bank had cancelled the card and were calling make sure we didn't make the purchases as they stopped it thinking it was stolen. Since they caught it so quickly, they didn't make us pay for the fraudulent purchases either. That was a nice blessing.

I still buy stuff on line and I still use a separate card for it. The low credit limit keeps the on line guys in line too as they can't put a bunch of incorrect charges on there before maxing the card out. At least we haven't had to test that. Thanks for the good work guys!

So, have you lost trust in the internet?


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