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This weekend I had the tedious chore of reconciling our latest credit card bill. Usually it’s pretty easy but this month I noticed a charge from an Internet company that wasn’t familiar. In fact, the charge description only provided an 866 phone number. So being due diligent, I called the number. Low and behold, it was a “store front” billing company and it was unable to let me know the name or nature was/is for the company billing me.

Hmmm, really? Next call was to the credit card company to dispute the charge.

In the meantime, the store-front sent alerted its client that I was going to be disputing the charge and next thing I know I am receiving a generic e-mail from an online sport gaming company (BODOG.COM). Yeah, I don’t gamble online…nor does my husband. So it seems that there were multiple accounts opened in my name with this company and each account had on different occasions tried to access and bill my credit card. Slightly suspicious? Yeah, I thought so too.

After speaking with a service rep, I found out that the person who committed this fraud also opened a yahoo account utilizing a rendition of my name – but it was not MY valid YAHOO! account. After speaking with the gaming company and continually telling them I would not divulge my birthday to them…really, do they think I’m that stupid? What were they going to do, ask me for my social security number next? I’m not that dumb! I finally was able to convince them that the charge was not made by me or a member of my family. And they subsequently returned the funds to my credit card.

Next up, I contacted YAHOO! Regarding the illegal activity one of its members was conducting. Well YAHOO! wasn’t very helpful, even when I provided them with the contact information for the gaming company (BODOG.COM) to confirm the ILLEGAL use of my credit card and corresponding YAHOO! Address the user provided. Instead I was told by YAHOO! That often times members are unaware that their e-mail addresses are being used for ILLEGAL and FRAUDULANT means. Really? Like that online gaming company hadn’t been corresponding with its user via e-mail. Instead, YAHOO! informed me that I should contact the gaming company and request the IP address for the user in question and to then file a police report. Well after a lengthy phone call with the gaming company (BODOG.COM) I was told that since they returned the funds to my credit card, they felt the matter in question was resolved and were not compelled to provide me with the IP address…why fight FRAUD?

So, I’m at a standstill. Lesson? Check your credit card statements diligently and always question a charge you are not familiar with. I’m still left wondering how someone got a hold of my credit card information? They also provided my real address to BODOG.COM in addition to my phone number (with only one digital different). That’s kinda scary. Identity theft happens every day. Use a shredder and I’m guessing a call to my local police department is now in order to make sure there isn’t anything else I need to do.

Anyone else end up on a similiar situation? If so, how did you handle it? Tips are appreciated.

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