I noticed this morning that someone had tried to call my home phone at midday the day before. I listened to the message: it was Barclaycard’s fraud department asking me to call them. Aha! That would explain why I hadn’t been able to use my credit card to pay a bill yesterday evening.
I called Barclaycard up. Yes, they’d put a stop on my card. The reason given: I had used it several times over the past week. ¿Que? Isn’t that what credit cards are for? What’s more, all the purchases were to merchants I’d paid before. If someone had cloned my card, they’d apparently cloned my preferences and behaviour too.
If the fraud alert is triggered by someone making five transactions in a week, buying from places they’ve bought from before, then it’s pretty weak. Unfit for purpose, even. Perhaps I shouldn’t complain: I’ve heard worse stories, of people being stranded abroad when their card issuer decided that the mere fact that they were using their card in a foreign country must mean that something was afoot.
I wasn’t impressed, but I asked them whether next time they had a problem they could call my mobile phone instead: there’s a better chance of me actually answering it. As I have a job, phoning my home phone at midday isn’t much use.
The person on the line said that she’d put a note to that effect, but that they normally wouldn’t do so: she wasn’t at all convinced that they would actually honour it.
I’ve been annoyed with Barclaycard since they started moving around my payment date every month in a sneaky attempt to catch me out. They’ve not succeeded so far, but it still grates.
‘That’s OK,’ I replied. ‘It’s more Barclaycard’s problem than mine: I have other cards, and I can just use them instead.’
And you know what? I think I’m going to.
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