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Chevron / credit card

CA, United States

I received a call this morning from an automated system regarding my Chevron card. The system explained that there were some questionable purchases made and this system was intended to provide me more information about those purchases, which I assumed as so that I could tell the system that the purchases were either authorized or not. I had to enter my billing zip code to authorize my used of the system. The system eventually provided the following transaction information:
“There was a purchase made in the amount of $37 on or about Sunday, was this purchase authorized?”
Since I was not sure about a $37 purchase – I pressed the option to get more information about the purchase. The system provided me the following additional information:
“There was a purchase made in the amount of $37 on or about Sunday, was this purchase authorized?”
Because this would not really qualify as “additional information” I managed to get connected to a live human, thinking we could clear this up quickly, IF they would only provide the location of the purchase. I was so very wrong.
I spoke first with Dennis. I really doubt this was his real name given the marked Indian accent, but I managed to make out what he was saying and provide the last four of my SSN and date of birth. Thinking we had this problem solved now, Dennis then proceeded to inform me he would be asking me a series of questions based on my credit file. I was confused.
I asked Dennis why we needed to go through the additional steps when I had provided billing zip code, SSN and date of birth. He informed me that because my billing address did not show on my credit file, this was required. I asked for further clarification since I went to their web site and updated the account with our new address, after moving 6 weeks ago.
Dennis proceeded with the questions, all the time I am wondering how we got so far from the original issue of the $37 transaction. I answered the first question, and asked to be transferred to a supervisor when I could not really understand the second question. The supervisor, also with an English name, spoke a little better English, but could not really explain why the additional authentication steps were necessary, other than it was a random process.
She asked the next question which was a tough one. I had to name a lender that I opened an account with in 2010 – I recognized the account as my auto loan. The loan is with Alphera Financial Services. In the list of possible lenders, from which I had to choose, one option was “Financial Services.” Since this was 66% correct I had the option of that or None of the Above. I mistakenly went with the 66%
When the scoring was complete the supervisor told me I failed the questions, and my account would be disabled for 30 days. I could take no action on the account for the next 30 days. When she asked me the normal “Is there anything else I can assist you with today” question I had to end the call.
Calling another number I found on the Chevron site lead me to Marco. Marco informed me there was really nothing I could do at this point. Even if I wanted to close my account, I would need to call back in 30 days and answer another round of questions.

So, the next time an automated system asked you if a $37 transaction was authorized, think twice about asking for more details

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