How Now [Brown Cow]

Alert! Alert! Alert! Your card was denied at Kroger in [neighboring city]. What? For a few split-seconds I was really confused. I was over in Cubelandia trying to decipher one of the worst flow-chart diagrams anyone has ever created. I was not at any grocery store anywhere. The GG had plans to drive to a neighboring city today and for a nano-second I was worried that he might not have been able to purchase something. But he has other cards and anyway, THIS card ended with MY card’s number. His card has a different number. And he had traveled to a DIFFERENT neighboring city in a totally different direction.

It slowly dawned on me that I had been HACKED! This has never happened to me before. Fortunately, we have tools to deal with that stuff these days. I went straight to the bank app on my phone and within about a minute’s worth of navigating, I had canceled the card. Whew! I got one more declined transaction alert and that was it. Since the declined “Kroger” purchase was gasoline, I’m guessing the person was prompted (at the pump) for a zip code and, having no clue what address the card was attached to, entered the wrong one and that triggered the declination and alert. How stooopid can people be? The second declined transaction was at some kind of vending musheen bizness and by that time I had canceled the card. (To be clear, I still have the card. It was not “physically” lost or stolen.)

We have a gas station in the neighborhood that is notorious for “skimming” incidents (or whatever they are called). It is the most convenient gas station for me to get gas at and I filled up there but that was WEEKS ago. Shortly after I did that more skimming incidents were reported. I stopped going there. So, not sure if someone got my card info from there or from somewhere else.

I don’t want to be smug about the online banking business. We* take security issues very seriously and are constantly working to ward off hackers and other attackers. But it is very hard to keep up with people who make a career out of trying to hack financial systems. Today my bank (which may or may not use my company’s software, I wouldn’t know), did a good job. (*I sit waaaaaaaay back from anything “real”. I do not have anything to do with security technology so not taking credit for anything.)

One Response to “How Now [Brown Cow]”

  1. Margaret Says:

    I’m glad the hack was caught! My issues have mainly been with large entities like my medical insurance and Equifax. Nothing has ever come of it, since I haven’t personally been hacked. Yet. I’m happy that there are so many safeguards now, although I have been burned on them by having my card denied because I wasn’t where they expected me to be.