Identity theft is not a joke, Jim!

Published by Beto Dealmeida on

Someone tried to open a credit card in my name today

After 10+ years in the US, it finally happened: someone tried to open a credit card in my name today. I received an email from my bank congratulating me and, fortunately, telling me that the application was "pending".

I half-panicked. The email said:

If you did not submit this credit application, please call us at 1-844-750-7939, Monday through Friday: 6 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday: 7 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Pacific Time.

I called the number. A woman named Ashley picked up, and I told her that someone applied for a credit card in my name. She asked for the last 4 digits of my SSN.

"No!", I said.


"How do I know you're not a scammer? I don't trust this number!"

"OK, sir... then you should go to a branch and ask them to call us."

"That's what I'm going to do!", I said, and hung up.

I went to my bank's website and searched for fraud numbers. I tried calling them, but they were all useless. I was being transferred from department to department, and I had to explain what happened from the start every time. Eventually, I got angry and decided to go to the nearest branch, a 30-minute drive away.

Upon arriving there, the person who helped me was also not super useful. All they did was call numbers and hand me the phone, so I had to explain what happened for the 5th, 6th, and 7th time while being transferred around. Some departments told me that since the application was still pending, they couldn't do anything!

Eventually, I got sent to the right place. I heard a familiar voice: "Hello, this is Ashley, how can I help?"

"Hmmm, hi, Ashley... sorry for being rude and not believing you earlier today. I'm at the branch now."

She laughed and said she totally understood, then quickly helped me cancel the application and oriented me to freeze my credit.