Do you trust your bank?

If you bank with Halifax maybe you should rethink your answer.

I’m going to tell you a tale that will shock you like Lindsay Lohans list of conquests. A few weeks ago, I lost my debit card. Now for normal people, this is a big hassle and faff, but for me its life. It’s about as common as waking up and putting my jeans on. I am a perpetual ‘chucker’. Once I’ve used the debit card, too lazy to put it back in my purse it will get chucked into some orifice of my bag. Same with my bus ticket (yes, a monthly one, which I have lost two of in the last year). Said chucked debit card could fall out anywhere. It’s like when you play buckaroo and you wait for the buck to roo. It’s only a matter of time. So you can assume, I am someone who is used to the protocol of reporting my card stolen.

I usually wait two days, in the vain hope, my debit card will grow legs, jump up from some corner of my room and go ‘Oi Kel, I was just shitting you, I’ve been here all the time’, but alas it never happens. Halifax, by now should be used to me. I have to say, I have never found a bank I liked, so I was so pleased when I realised it had a been a few years since I opened my account with no problems I upgraded my account. Big mistake.

I reported to card lost on the 6th March. Again, a pretty straight forward process. I only wish there was a replacement for other things in life, like keys or pets, where you could just report that they are lost and get a new one. I’m going on Dragons Den with that one.

a couple of weeks later, during the general checking of my bank I do to see if some generous donor had deposited £1000000 in my bank account for no reason, I noticed a debit, for £40 to a loan company. Now it’s safe to say, I do not apply for payday loans, because I am not an immense idiot. I called up, and the customer service agent confirmed that someone had indeed found my card, and had ‘gone ballistic’ applying for payday loans.

Apparently, even though said loan would effectively go through to me, they do it just to see if the card they have belongs to someone with a good credit rating. Also, they can pay for the services with a different card to the bank, so for all I know some nice person in Basildon has found my card and is applying for credit left right and centre.

Here’s the question no one could answer: Why did this transaction go through on a cancelled card?

Come on Halifax, you make such a shitting song and dance about us reporting our cards lost, cancel it maybe?

Anyway, 45 minutes on the phone to Halifax on an 0845 number, passed through to three people, including someone who didn’t understand a word I said, and I finally managed to get THEIR mistake sorted and the money refunded. Problem solved.

Well actually no. 2 weeks later, I check my balance again (still no million pounds from an anonymous donor) and another fee has been taken from a company I don’t recognise on the old card. So I call again, and again get told I need to go through to disputes.

Wait, WHAT? I don’t need to do anything. Why do I need to keep calling and telling you not to put transactions through on a card you know someone else has? So I ask to close my account. But I wont get my money back unless I go through to disputes.

Then I get cut off.

I thought I would try an different angle and tweeted them some abuse. Lets be fair, if Halifax are going to let some criminal keep using my old card I may as well bend over!  So someone finally rings me.

Another 45 minutes on the phone to get my money refunded for the second transaction.

So all in all:

2 x unauthorized transactions

3 x phonecalls one of which I got cut off of

and this is all to get my money back after they let a card reported LOST be used.

I will give you some advice campers. Get your money paid into a Post office account, take it out the day you are paid and put it in a big fucking sack.

If you are going to use a bank account, don’t use Halifax unless you fancy giving your money away.


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