Why You Should Enroll in PenFed Card Security Text Alerts: a True Story.

Posted August 08 2014
by PenFed Team
Image re potential fraud alert

The reality. You’re busy.

The second reality. You’ve got a lot going on during your day and you use your debit or credit card almost every single day on expenses like gas, groceries, dining, travel, and entertainment.

Using your debit and/or credit card is convenient. That is, until a security fraud hold is placed on your card. This is generally triggered by sudden and unusual spending behavior that is not indicative of your normal spending routine. For example, purchase activity made in another state, rather than in the state where you reside, or purchase activity made in a foreign country, or when one or more large purchase amounts suddenly occur.

The third reality. Let’s say a fraud hold is placed on your debit or credit card and you find yourself at the gas pump frustrated and embarrassed because your card was just declined. You have no idea why the card was denied because you are not aware of a precautionary fraud hold placed on your card.

When a situation like this does occur, this seemingly beneficial and precautionary service that is designed to protect you and the financial institution that services your debit or credit card suddenly becomes a REALLY big hassle and inconvenience.

True story. Just recently, I was at home getting ready for my work day. I’m in the shower and I can hear the phone ring. I wonder… Who could be calling me at such an early hour? Perhaps I should quickly end my shower and check voicemail? Maybe it’s a family emergency? I’m concerned. I’m bothered by the potential seriousness of the call. I end my shower, and rush to check my voicemail.

When I do so, I learn that the call is in response to a hold that has been placed on my credit card due to fraud. I am instructed to contact the card company to confirm the recent activity in question on my card.

What went through my mind? I thought to myself, what a hassle. I don’t have time for this because I need to get ready for work. Do I wait until the evening to call? Maybe I should call now to ease my curiosity about the charges. What if these charges are really fraudulent? Then what? And, how did this happen?

Everyone at this point would like to know how the story ends–right? It’s fairly anticlimactic, but this is the point I would like to drive home to you today. . .

I call the card company’s customer service number for their Fraud Department. I promptly confirm through an automated process that the purchase activity in question is indeed valid. After I do so, the call ends.

My final reaction? All the anxiety I just experience through this confirmation process by telephone was—in a nutshell—stressful, inefficient, and somewhat inconvenient.

The takeaway? I really wish I had enrolled in this company’s fraud text alert service when I first heard about it at the time I signed up for the card. If I had enrolled in the service, this entire confirmation process would have been way easier and faster.

Is there a solution to this experience? Yes. With most financial institutions today, you may now confirm fraud alerts of this nature by way of a text message. Even better news, PenFed now makes this service available to its membership!

Didn’t get the memo earlier about this service? Well, that’s why we’re telling you about it today, so you too can avoid situations like the one I just described.

PenFed Card Security Text Alerts

PenFed Card Security Text Alerts will help you avoid delays because you receive text message alerts directly to your mobile device when suspicious activity is detected on your PenFed Visa, MasterCard credit and/or debit card.

And what’s even more exciting, is that PenFed Card Security Text Alerts are designed to help you quickly confirm ownership of purchase activity on your account, in near real-time!

Find out how to enroll today!

To enroll for this service, please access your account at PenFed.org.

For more information about PenFed Card Security Text Alerts and how they work, check out the following resource page we’ve created to address your questions and concerns:

What are Card Security Text Alerts?

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