Arby’s Restaurant Processes Six Months Worth Of Purchases In Single Night

You know how sometimes you’ll make a debit or credit card purchase and it doesn’t show up on your statement right away? Some businesses process their transactions in batches, so it’s just a matter of time until it pops up. But what about when there is a six-month delay on those transactions being processed?

Consumerist reader A. says he was looking at his bank statement the other day and noticed that there had been six consecutive small-dollar (under $25 each) transactions all attributed to something called “AZARB LLC.”

Since such purchases are generally an indicator that someone has stolen your ID and is enjoying a buying spree of some sort, A. contacted his bank to have a new card issued.

The mystery deepened when A. spoke to his wife and found she also had mystery charges from the same company — on two different cards.

Something was going on. An ID thief having access to one account is normal, but to three different accounts from two different people?

The picture got clearer when the AZARB name on their statements eventually changed to indicate a local Arby’s in Glendale.

But there was still a worrisome question — sure, A. and his wife had been to Arby’s but not nine or ten times in the last day.

So A. called the Arby’s in question where he was told that the store’s “computer” had apparently held on to six months’ worth of charges and then suddenly decided to finally process all those transactions in one night.

The person he spoke to apologized for the inconvenience, but A. is concerned that this glitch (or oversight or whatever it was) could affect an awful lot of people.

“I asked myself, how many hundreds of customers attend an Arby’s and pay with a credit card over six months?” writes A. “What about frequent customers, who might eat there almost every day? I only got hit for a couple hundred dollars, but some people might get hit with far more. It seemed a rather appalling business practice. I can imagine people finding cards maxed, or their checking accounts mysteriously drained, probably like me assuming some kind of fraud.”

We reached out to Arby’s Restaurant Group with the details of A.’s story and received the following statement in response:

We are currently investigating the situation and will take corrective action based on our findings. Based on preliminary information, this appears to be a processing issue isolated to one franchised restaurant in Glendale, Arizona. At this point, we are not aware of any breach of data security at this location.

Interestingly enough, though we didn’t share A’s name or contact info with Arby’s HQ, he tells us that after we contacted the company, he received a follow-up call from someone at the fast food chain.

“He told me to bring my account statements to the Arby’s and they would reimburse my expense related to this incident,” A. tells Consumerist. “I was both surprised and pleased.

A. says that when he shared his belief with this company rep that this glitch/oversight/goof may have affected many customers, the Arby’s rep told him, “Yes, quite a few.”

“I find it rare that a fast food franchise respond so swiftly and decisively to a consumer difficulty,” writes A.

We’re just curious how a fast food franchise doesn’t realize that it hasn’t processed credit and debit card payments for a week, let alone several months.

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  1. evlpete says:

    I had a similar think happen recently, I ordered some wine online and a week later charges appear on my card from a store I never heard of in a place I have never been.

    I eventually found out that due to the lovely federal liquor laws my order had to be processed and shipped via proxy in my home state.

    I wish they told me that before I canceled my cards.

  2. JoeBlow says:

    It’s bad enough when I look back at my statement for a month and see a vendor with a weird name like that, and have to think back “What was I doing that weekend, where did I eat, did I see a movie” to figure out if a charge is real or not. If 6 months hit at once, I’d have no hope.

  3. RupturedDuck says:

    Arbys needs to eat their delayed charges. If I was foolish enough to pay for fast food with plastic I would dispute the charges. Who is to say Arbys, or any business, could delay charges by months in a deliberate fraudulent scheme caused by a local store manager to hide their own illegal activity?

    • APK1080 says:

      “If I was foolish enough to pay for fast food with plastic”

      The article said the charges showed up on their bank statement, not credit card bill. Are you one of those archaic people who hold up the line paying with a check because they don’t understand how a Visa debit card works?