Geeks With Blogs

A few days ago I wrote about what I consider a poor customer service interaction with TiVo, a company that I have been faithful to for the past 12 years or so. In that post I talked about how they helped me, but I felt like I was doing something wrong at the end of the call – when in reality I was just following through with an offer that TiVo made possible through my cable company.

Today I had a wonderful customer service interaction with American Express, another company that I have been loyal to for many years.(I am a Gold Card member.) I like my Amex card because I can use it for big purchases and it forces me to pay them off at the end of the month. Well, the reality is that I’m not always so good at doing that, so sometimes my payments are over a couple of months.  :)

A few days ago I received an email from “American Express” fraud detection. The email stated that I should call a toll free number and have the last four digits of my card handy. I grew up during the BBS era with some creative and somewhat mischievous friends. I’ve learned to be extremely cautious with regard to my online life! So, I did what you would expect…I sent them a nice reply that said “Go screw yourself.”

For the past couple of days someone has been trying to call me and I assumed it was the same prankster trying to get the last four digits of my card. The last caller left a message indicating that they were from American Express and they wanted to talk to me about my card. After looking up their customer service numbers on the web site, I called and was put through to the fraud detection group.

The rep explained that there were some charges on my wife’s card that did not fit our purchase profile. She went through each charge and, for the most part, they looked like charges my wife may have made. My wife had asked to use the card for some Christmas shopping during the same timeframe as the charges. The American Express rep very politely explained that these looked out of character to her. She continued through the charges.

She listed a charge for $160 – at this point my adrenaline started kicking in. My wife said she was going to charge about $25 or $30 dollars, not $160. Next, the rep listed a charge for over $1200. Uh oh!! Now I know that my account has been compromised. I informed the rep that we definitely did not make those charges. She replied with, “that’s ok Mr Pope, we declined those charges as well as some others.”

We went through the pending charges and there were a couple more that were questionable. The rep very patiently waited while I called my wife on my office phone to verify the charges. Sure enough, my wife had not ordered anything from Netflix or purchased anything with Yahoo Wallet! “No problem Mr Pope, we will remove those charges as well.”

“We are going to cancel your wife’s card and send her a new one. She will receive it by 7pm tomorrow via Federal Express. Please watch your statements over the next couple of months. If you notice anything fishy, give us a call and we will take care of it for you.” (Wow, I’m thinking to myself!) “Is there anything else I can help you with Mr Pope?”

“Nope, thank you very much for catching this so early and declining those charges!”, I said smiling. Apparently she could hear me smiling on the other end of the phone line because she replied with “keep smiling Mr Pope and have a good rest of your week.”

Now THAT’s customer service!  Thank you American Express!!! I shall remain an ever faithful customer.

Interesting… Posted on Thursday, November 29, 2012 2:59 PM Musings | Back to top

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