A couple of minutes ago I received a call from an automated system pretending to be from JP Morgan Chase that gave me an “online access code” and asked to call back 1-866-355-3744 in case I did not request the code.
I did not request the code, so I called back. There was another automated system that asked me for my debit card number and PIN. At this point I felt something is not kosher, hung up the phone and called Chase customer service on the back of my card.
This is when things started to get weird. The customer service representative confirmed that 1-866-355-3744 number does not belong to Chase, and calmly advised me not to give any information to anyone. She did not seem interested in pursuing the case any further. I asked to be transferred to the fraud department.
The fraud department was not much interested either. The representative asked for my debit card number and my name. I explained the situation to her, and she said she need to further verify my details to help me with any fraudulent activity on my account. I explained, that was not the purpose of my call: I did not give out any information, and all I want Chase to do is track down the people who are impersonating them, assuming that would have better connection with the FCC, or the FBI, or whoever else handles this kind of stuff.
The fraud department representative would not budge: she had the script and she had to follow it. Since the only option in the script was apparently “OMG, some people took my money!”, it felt hopeless, so I declined further assistance and hung up.
Judging from the Google search, this fraud has been going on since at least 2010, but no one seems to give a damn. I filed a complained with the FCC, let’s see if it takes us anywhere.
Rewind back a couple of months. My relative’s wallet was stolen, apparently on the bus, with a little bit of cash and a few credit cards. She reported it to the Port Authority police in New York. She had a pretty good idea who stole it and I think if they got to it, they could catch the guy. However, they were totally not interested. In fact, they outright refused to take the case and issue a police report, claiming that it is not certain that the theft occurred on the bus. A police report was still needed to trigger fraud protection from the credit card companies, so she went to her local town police. They were sympathetic, opened the case and issued the report, but indicated that they will not be able to conduct any investigation, since the theft happened outside of their jurisdiction. After the report was issued, the credit card companies promptly removed all unauthorized transactions and ate up the loss.
The bottom line is that the law enforcement and the banks for some reason seem to be completely not interested in pursuing the fraudsters and the thieves. It seems cheaper for them to just eat the loss than to do something about it.