Reader Bryan’s Wells Fargo credit/debit card stopped working unexpectedly one day while he was trying to gas up his car. He was confused because he had used the card the night before with no problems. He spoke to a Wells Fargo CSR at a local branch and discovered that the data for 125,000 cards, including his, was “compromised” thus deactivating his card. This had already happened to him once before within the last year and he was not pleased. His letter, inside…
Yesterday I was running late for work and arrived with just enough gas to get me to a gas station during my lunch break. I go to a gas station near my job on my lunch break to fill up my car. My debit/credit card linked to my checking account is denied. I had the clerk try both credit and debit, denied, denied. I used my card the night before with no problem. I go to another gas station down the street and denied again. So I call the number on the back and get a hold of a customer service rep. I explain my situation and they state, my card is in “conversion” and they sent me a new card in the mail. I explained to them that I never received a new card or a phone call telling me that my old card was going to get canceled. ( BTW I have almost 2 years before this card should expire) I ask them what caused my old card to expire before the given date. They put the blame on me, stating that I probably did weird purchasing activity or purchased a bunch online. I stated I purchased 1 item for under 20 bucks online in the last year and I check my account online daily. They went back and checked and then stated I was part of a mass conversion for my protection??? (only thing I need protection from is Wells Fargo)
After multiple calls, speaking to 2 supervisors, 3 customer support reps, and one customer support person at a branch, I found out data for 125,000 cards was “compromised”.
This is the 2nd time within 1 year this has happened to me with Wells Fargo. ( First time I gave them the benefit of the doubt since they had an old cell number to contact me, at that time I had them update my profile with my current cell number)
They offered nothing to help me out in the current jam of being at a gas station, with very little gas in my car, with no access to my money. They would not activate my old card temporarily so I could get out of this situation. (I expressed this to every person I talked with )
Between the several calls I got mixed information about how this process works and how long your old card will work during the conversion. (14 day, 21 days, 30 days. They are definitely not all on the same page within the same business. The lucky answer is 14-21 days)
No one would tell me exactly what caused this “compromise” of my card data. This was internal information. Yet I am having to deal with it.
I asked Joseph at the branch why I should stay a customer with them, he answered: “That is a personal choice and frankly I would not stay with a bank that offered bad customer service.” Thanks Joseph for some honesty.
Both supervisors were really rude, claimed Wells Fargo did nothing wrong and implied this was my fault.
They offered me a temporary debit card the next morning at a branch location and stated I should be able to access $300 a day. Actually its only $60 for the first day, I found this out after I left the branch, this further deterred my plans. (I work 9-6, which is their bank hours, very inconvenient for me, so I lose another hour of pay and I needed access to more than $60)
I left a voice mail (only option I was giving) with a manager and have received no call back as to how my data was compromised.
Lesson learned, have a backup checking account just in case your bank decides to cancel your card and not inform you. Wells Fargo has terrible customer service and tons of red tape for us consumers who trust them with our hard earned money. Apparently 100,000+ card data is being compromised on a yearly basis.
We can understand your frustration, Bryan. To have to worry about running out of gas and where you are going to get a few dollars, all because of the bank’s error, is really dehumanizing. To have it happen twice in 1 year would be more than enough for us to start taking our business elsewhere. Loyal Consumerist readers know that there are several reasons to have a backup credit or debit card. It sounds cliche but it’s still good advice: Don’t put all your eggs in 1 basket. It really is only a matter of time before your card has some type of glitch which could seriously inconvenience you or worse.