Yesterday our monthly credit card bill came in the door, I took a quick look at it and set it aside for later attention. Today since my wife was going into the bank she said she would go and pay it. when she came home she said there were a couple of transactions on it she didn't recognise and I was to check them.
Looking at them I didn't recognise them either - both to the same supplier and on consecutive days - so I hot footed it to the bank who told me to ring their credit card department. Speaking to the credit card people it was established that both transactions were to a well known women's clothing store and both transactions took place at about 0320 local time. I don't cross-dress, I don't sleepwalk and I am normally in bed by 0100 ! To my knowledge, my credit cards have never been out of my possession with the exception of a pre-paid Euro card we share. Happily, the bank is treating this as fraud and refunding our money and the on-line store in question is treating this as fraud - apparently the e-mail address used was nothing like mine and the delivery address is about 300 miles away in a city I haven't been into for 20 years.
The question remains - how did this criminal get hold of my credit card details ?
I thought I was good on security. Nobody knows my pin numbers, although they are on file in our house. I've never leant out my credit card. I don't keep passwords and access codes on a computer but on a memory stick which lives on top of my desk at home - it gets put into the computer when I need one I don't know - and I use different passwords for any account than can cost me money.
I am beginning to wonder if this was done through a hacked PoS terminal.
Happily, I understand out money will be refunded. It wasn't a particularly ambitious attack, nowhere near the limit on the card, the sum involved was only about £UK 450 but it would have made a dent in the budget for a couple of months at least !
But it is a warning to be very careful with your plastic !