Posted by: joshjasper | December 30, 2009

Ron’s Smoke Shop

I’ve been attacked!  While going through my checking account online today, I noticed two purchases made at Ron’s Smoke Shop.  This prompted an immediate call to my wife to inquire about what appeared to be a new habit for her.   As suspected, someone hacked our check cards and stocked up on cigars and booze. 

I’ve experienced this type of violence before.  Yes, this destructive action is certainly a form of violence in my mind.  When living in Los Angeles someone managed to hack my checking account through the bank’s server and withdraw $999 from my checking account.  One more dollar would have triggered an alert of some sort.  This guy was good.  When it was all said and done, he withdrew $999 from hundreds of other accounts before anyone was the wiser. 

My bank suggested that I stop by Ron’s Smoke  Shop today to gather any information they may have about these transactions.  And so I took my promotion to detective seriously and made my way to Ron’s.  I immediately knew something was askew the moment I drove into the snow-covered parking lot.  The windows were dark, the store was empty, and for sale signs were plastered all over the building.  The plot thickened. 

Who was this person that threatened my financial livelihood?  And how was he making purchases within a store that appeared to have been closed for months?  The feelings of anger I have had were turning into a mild case of paranoia.  Questions began to fill my head.  How did this person get my seemingly private information?  The bank assured me that the account was intact and that the breach likely occurred from a third-party transaction.  Did someone get into my Netflix account?  If so, I doubt they were scared off by my recent movie requests of “Brokeback Mountain” and Woody Allen’s “Everyone Says I Love You”….take it easy, I’m not the only one picking movies on that thing!

I’ve already started thinking about how I am going to change my spending habits to thwart off a future attack, and I’m blaming myself and wondering what I could have done differently to prevent this from happening to me.

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Responses

  1. This is exactly why I don’t use a debit card. The fewer people with access to my account # the better.

    People think I’m paranoid, but my “preferred customer” cards are all in fake names and I pay cash for almost everything (there are other reasons this is a good idea as well). I’ll use a credit card if I have to, it at least has some fraud protection. I shred every piece of paper that has my name, address, or any kind of account # on it, even junk mail and library receipts. Old cards get incinerated.

    You have to check ATMs to make sure they don’t have a reader attached to the card slot. With all the travel you’ve been doing lately, my guess would have been a reader on a strange ATM if it hadn’t been local.


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