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Card fraud, please help

(35 Posts)
ThreeBeanRap Sat 16-May-15 21:15:36

DH's current account card stopped working recently so he called to order a new one. He was told he would keep his usual PIN. The card didn't arrive. He went online to get a phone number to report this today, and when checking his account found that someone had transferred all the money from our joint savings account into his current account, and then withdrawn the lot including his current account overdraft. In total about £8000.

We have reported it to the bank and they have opened a fraud case but haven't given any indication as to whether we'll get the money back. I've had money missing before and it's been refunded straight away. What's happened is his card and the new PIN, which the bank did sent out, have both been intercepted and the fraudster has been able to access all our linked accounts on an in branch atm and take everything.

I'm newly pregnant and feel absolutely sick with worry that they won't refund because the card and correct PIN were used. Has anyone got any similar experience or any advice? Without this money we are truly absolutely screwed.

Thanks in advance.

VivienScott Sat 16-May-15 21:27:50

THis is from the citizens advice bureau website:

If you think there has been an unauthorised withdrawal on your account because of a lost or stolen card or cheque book, you must tell your bank or building society as soon as possible.

^If you've not authorised the withdrawal, your bank or building society must refund the money immediately. If there is evidence to suggest you acted fraudulently or were negligent, they can delay the refund while they carry out further investigations. However, the investigation must be carried out within a few days.

You will be responsible for any unauthorised withdrawals which are made before you tell your bank or building society about losing your card or chequebook. However, this will only be up to a maximum of £50, unless you have acted fraudulently or been negligent.

You will not be responsible for any unauthorised withdrawals after you have told your bank or building society, unless you have acted fraudulently or been negligent.^

So it depends when you told them and when it was withdrawn, but you SHOULD get it all back, but MIGHT have to pay £50 as it sounds like you weren't negligent.

How on earth were they able to withdraw £8k though? Normally you have to turn up with a letter signed in the blood of your great great great grandmother to take out anymore than a few hundred!

ThreeBeanRap Sat 16-May-15 21:32:43

See this is my concern, they obviously think we've been negligent or they would have given it back immediately. We haven't ever seen the new card or PIN, there's nothing we could have done about this.

They moved about £5.5k from our savings into his current account which was do-able because just movement between accounts but then have been withdrawing huge amounts in a go, £3.5k in one case. I don't know how that was allowed. Apparently it was done in branch but even so I wouldn't think they'd let me take that much out, let alone huge sums several days in a row. I don't know why we weren't alerted as its definitely unusual spending.

VivienScott Sun 17-May-15 07:33:10

I think they have to be able to prove you were negligent/fraudulent. If you chased up the card and money in a reasonable amount of time it should be OK, but it is quite a large sum so they probably want to check.

But at the end of the day your bank has a responsibility with this as well, it isn't all down to you. Badger them, don't let up and if they really drag their heels start a complaint with the Financial Ombudsman Service.

noisytoys Sun 17-May-15 08:04:51

I'm wondering how they withdrew that much in one go. The daily withdrawal limit in a cash machine is £300 as standard - £500 for a premium account. They would have to impersonate your DH at a counter several times over several days. Surely questions would be asked from the bank?

Catnuzzle Sun 17-May-15 08:19:34

If the card and new PIN letter failed to arrive at your home address, they have been stolen and you are a victim of 'theft of post'.
As the bank are yet to refund you, you are technically the victims of the fraud on your account (until you are refunded) and this must be reported to Action Fraud (online form).

The police will issue you a crime number regards the theft (one crime number will cover both aspects).

There's no reason the bank won't refund you, unless there is negligence on your part.

smile

ThreeBeanRap Sun 17-May-15 09:33:52

Thanks so much to all of you for taking the time to respond.

vivien the card was ordered end of April, it hadn't arrived by 9th may when DH went into our local branch to chase it up. They said it might be late because of the bank holiday, see if it arrives next week and if not let us know. So he went to call them yesterday which was when we discovered this.

noisy I have no idea. DH is ringing them now to ask that. I am sure I've never been able to take out that kind of money, apparently it was mostly in branches but I cant understand how that was allowed.

cat thanks for that advice. The bank are supposed to be calling us on Monday morning to advise how things are progressing but should we do the form now anyway?

ThreeBeanRap Sun 17-May-15 10:03:59

So he's just got off the phone to them. Apparently someone ordered a new PIN 3 days after the card was dispatched, and that was sent out. It wasn't DH. We have a £250 withdrawal limit so the money was taken in branch over the counter. The guy said they would have asked additional questions but they obviously haven't. I'm furious, how could our bank allow such huge sums to be taken day after day without checking with us?

DH can prove he was elsewhere on at least some of the occasions the money went out if not all, I know that doesn't prove he hadn't given the card to someone to use but it 100% wasn't him in those branches.

I feel so sick and stressed about this.

Rockchick1984 Sun 17-May-15 10:12:54

The bank will have CCTV footage so can prove it wasn't your DH. The bank I worked at allowed up to £5k cash withdrawal using chip & pin so that would explain the amounts, however there should have been questions asked if there was multiple large cash withdrawals if that was unusual for the account.

Have you spoken to the branch or the bank's fraud department? Realistically the branch (or normal call centre) won't be able to help you with this, so ask them for the fraud team's phone number. You will need to report it to the police as well if you haven't already.

ThreeBeanRap Sun 17-May-15 10:54:01

They will have CCTV footage and he can prove he was miles away at the time (for example the largest sum was withdrawn in person in London when he was 50 miles away in a work meeting with loads of people) but from my obsessive googling it looks like that doesn't prove we haven't given the card to someone else and the PIN number, so could still be held responsible. We don't even KNOW the number and have never laid eyes on the card.

Should we report it to police? When I've had money go missing before (a much smaller amount and they refunded it straight away) we haven't needed to.

ThreeBeanRap Sun 17-May-15 10:55:27

Oh sorry - yes we have spoken to the fraud department, they are investigating. We have never taken that much money out in one go, let alone several times over, so they should definitely have alerted us.

Catnuzzle Sun 17-May-15 20:50:53

Yes, complete the Action Fraud form. You don't need to wait for the bank to refund.

AgentProvocateur Sun 17-May-15 21:05:51

Looks like someone's intercepted your mail if they got the card AND the pin. Do you share a communal hallway? If not, report to the Royal Mail.

caroldecker Sun 17-May-15 21:49:06

Do they have your correct address and was the card sent to it, or was it changed on thier system?

this is a bit old, but the first example shows how the onbusdman dealt with a similar case.

ThreeBeanRap Sun 17-May-15 22:17:37

We have spoken to Action Fraud and have a crime reference number. We have also reported it to Royal Mail and our building management company. We do share a communal hallway, all post is put into individual locked postboxes but they would be easy to break into. The postman has access to all of them. But I really would be shocked if it was him or a neighbour. They'd have to be checking our postbox every day on the off chance to find the card in the first place. The bank do have the correct address in their system so it's definitely been sent there.

carol thanks, that's helpful. The more I think about the more I feel that the bank have been grossly negligent by not alerting us that over £8k has been taken in 3 days, we have never ever displayed similar spending patterns and it should have flagged up as a major concern.

lizzywig Mon 18-May-15 06:03:36

I'm so sorry to hear this. I was the victim of credit card fraud and know how stressful it can be. My advice is to keep a timeline of events because the more that happens the harder it is to remember everything. Make a note of dates you speak to people, their names etc. In my case it took 8 months to resolve because the bank made so many mistakes, in the end I sent the whole time line to them by post and they fixed it almost immediately so it was invaluable.

I'm just wondering, you say your DH went into the bank on 9th May to query the location of the card. Presumably they would have looked at his account to see if it had been sent...maybe? I see this as hin alerting them something was wrong, ppresumably there would be cctv that he did this if no record was made on his account that he went in. It obviously won't prove the conversation but the cashier may remember. My other wondering is when the money went missing. Was it before 9th May? If so dh querying the status of his card should have been a major flag for the bank. They would have seen the withdrawals had they looked at the account. If the withdrawals were either side of 9th should they have allowed such a large payment given that he had told them the card had not arrived. Obviously if it was all after 9th this won't help. Good luck with sorting this out, you have all my thoughts at the moment. Keep us posted.

lizzywig Mon 18-May-15 06:14:13

I meant to add that he (and you) should check your credit reports. The fact that the fraudster has repeatedly avoided answering questions seems odd and the bank may say that the person was asked questions. There is of course a slim chance that they did have the answers to your questions. It does seem unlikely given that it was a bank card intercepted in the post but also bear in mind that they would have given answers to questions when ordering a new pin. I would be wanting to check credit reports that nothing new had been applied for in his or your name. Identity fraud does happen although but really in this instance it would just be checking for my own peace of mind.

ThreeBeanRap Mon 18-May-15 07:19:22

lizzywig thank you for your kind message. It is unbelievably stressful. I can't stop thinking about the possibility of not getting it back and what that will mean for us, it will be a complete disaster.

Unfortunately all the money went after 9th (13th May was when it began) but we have kept a timeline of everything including notes of conversations with various staff at the bank. We spoke to a lawyer yesterday who is going to call the bank today after they speak to us with an update, unless of course that update is returning all our money!!

Will definitely check credit reports thanks for that tip.

Felinealarmclock Wed 20-May-15 00:22:47

I think that's really poor of the bank. And it is fraud so you should get the money back - if need be go to the ombudsman but hopefully it won't come to that.

ThreeBeanRap Wed 20-May-15 12:10:32

Thanks feline, so do I!! We've been calling them every day but no update yet. The longer it drags out the more I worry that it's going to be a no to getting our money back easily. It's unbelievably frustrating. We should hear by Friday at the latest but if it's a no it will be a much longer process to get the money in our accounts again.

songbird Wed 20-May-15 12:19:38

It might be as simple as the bank having a minimum amount they'll automatically refund and anything over that just takes more time to investigate. I agree this is very poor of the bank, though - I got a text from my bank saying they'd detected unusual spending and that was just several transactions amounting to £200 or so! Really hope you get some answers soon.

ThreeBeanRap Thu 21-May-15 10:34:13

We're still waiting...day 4 of a maximum possible (allegedly) 5 now and still no update whatsoever.

Their communication with us has been abysmal throughout this, I have lost all faith in them. Any recommendations of where to move our accounts to (if we ever get money back in them!) would be most welcome.

lizzywig Fri 22-May-15 07:22:27

Sorry to hear this, what do they say when you call?

uggmum Fri 22-May-15 07:29:36

I would consider moving to first direct. It's a great bank. I think they have a joining incentive of around £100 at the moment too.

In the meantime, I would progress your case, ask for a closed final complaint response and threaten to pass it to the ombudsman. This should speed things up.

I would name and shame on here too.

ThreeBeanRap Fri 22-May-15 12:47:39

I didn't want this thread to be googleable so won't write it out but the bank begin with N and have a 7 letter name.

Lizzywig when we call they say the investigation team aren't customer facing so we can't speak to them, they just say there's no update yet but will be tomorrow (they have said this every day).

Today is the last day they have to give us a decision according to their own timescales. We have a slight update though since last night!

So the first amount they took out was the biggest sum (£3,500), and they paid that to a fake company – it's the only one that wasn’t taken over the counter or from an atm. When DH was chasing up again yesterday, they were going through all the amounts again, and the person on the phone said that our numbers weren't adding up to the same as the investigated amount…basically they had missed off this first sum, which is over a third of the total. DH said he had definitely reported that amount in the beginning, and they agreed that yes, they could see that on the original notes, but that it hadn't gone across to the investigation team. So their mistake.

He then put DH on hold to alert the investigation team, and came back to say they were going to have to close the current case and reopen a new one to include the £3,500, this would mean another 5 working days investigation. DH lost it, and the guy on the phone said he agreed, and put DH through to the complaints team.

Less than 8 hours later, that £3,500 is back in our account. So clearly it is a) possible to move things that quickly and b) quite obvious to the complaints team that a fraud has been perpetrated. I have no idea why the rest of the money hasn’t therefore been immediately repaid to us.

Uggmum will look into First Direct, thank you!

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