I don’t know about you, but these days, I’m paranoid about personal security, in particular online security but today, we aren’t going to talk about that. We are instead going to talk about just how much you trust your bank that holds your credit cards, and consequently, a lot of personal information about yourself.
I recently had my bank (Citibank if you must know) call me out of the blue. Actually it was someone purporting to be from Citibank – you’ll know why I say this when you read on.
The caller identified herself as from Citibank and asked if I was Paris B to which I said yes. Her next question boggled my mind.
She proceeded to ask me to give her my birth date in order to verify myself! Err… hello? You called me and I said I was who I was. What other verification do you need and more suspiciously, why do you need it?
This is actually the 2nd time its happened to me, with a call purporting to be from Citibank, and no other bank. I don’t know if anyone else has had a similar experience.
Now, we’ve all heard of con jobs right? People who obtain your personal information by theft or by scam; and then siphon off your money or rack up fraudulent charges on your credit card. I was not about to be conned by disclosing my personal details on the phone to someone I don’t know who purports to be from a bank I hold a credit card with. So I ask HER for verification that she was indeed from Citibank.
And she got pissed at me! The nerve.
So ultimately I told her that since I wasn’t even sure if she was from the bank she claims to be from and if she was, she should have my details already, there was nothing else to talk about and I rang off.
Now, I do understand that perhaps from the bank’s perspective, they want to verify the person taking the call, to be sure they are speaking to the correct person.
But there has to be a better way, what with all the scams going around. This could very well be a new permutation of a phone scam. Asking someone like me to verify my personal information on the phone to a stranger, just because they claim to be from the bank doesn’t do it for me. So I don’t know how the bank can and will do their verification, but this just doesn’t cut it.
On the flipside, assuming this was a scam, how on earth did they know which bank I banked with and how to contact me? Is there a security breach at the bank’s end? See why I’m so suspicious? 😛
Have you had an experience like this before? Would you disclose your information on the phone to someone just because they said they were from a bank you bank with? Have you? 😛
If you work with a bank, do you think this is the right thing to be doing? Perhaps others are more cooperative, but a paranoid person like me would make you run rings before I divulge my personal information to someone who calls me out of the blue and says they are from a bank I happen to bank with. The bank makes me do the same verification process when I call them, they should expect their customers to give the third degree when they call us!
Your thoughts on a postcard, please. Or make that a comment below 🙂