If I ever decide to get into a life of crime, I'm going to target American Express.
Six months ago I was lying in bed when I got a call from Nordstroms wanting to talk to me about my recent credit card application. That was when I learned that I had a little bit of an identity theft problem. I added a fraud alert to my account with the credit agencies and closed all of the cards that had been opened in my name over the weekend. A week later I checked my credit again and closed the other card that had been opened.
This week I was once again lying in bed when I got a call from American Express. They wanted to talk to me about my credit card. I initially thought that someone was opening up new credit cards in my name again since the 90 day fraud alert had expired, but it turns out that AmEx gave someone a card in my name six months ago and then let them run up $14,000 in charges without making any payments before they started wondering why.
So clearly American Express needs to bump up their fraud prevention efforts.
Also, they need to think about who they hire as customer service representatives. When I called them back to get the card cancelled, first I had to figure out how to get past the automated answering system since I didn't know the card number. I finally reached a person and explained the whole identity theft problem, and after a while she was able to find the account based on my social security number.
Then she asked me for the card PIN.
Life of crime, here I come...