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cashnocredit

Wife had a Fraudulent Account opened From Wayfair

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Posted (edited)

Cautionary Tale.

 

My wife has a Cap One card and so she got the 2 years free monitoring offer from the CRA hack. I've long been encouraging her to monitor her credit. Her response has been usually "what's that?" and why should I?.

 

I get it. I was like that once too.

 

So she finally got her letter out and signed up for the two year deal.

 

All her accounts were current but one was newly opened and she had no idea what it was. Had a $700 balance opened in Sept. and not yet due or reported late.

 

She called the number on the account: It was from Wayfair furniture which goes through Fortiva. She has never done business with Wayfair let alone opened an account.

 

Account closed and fraud investigation initiated.

 

Pure luck she didn't find out from getting dunning notices or places closing her accounts. I've been telling her forever that she should be monitoring her credit. Now she's a believer.

 

 

Update: the CSR and Fraud Dept. of Fortiva (the company that finances Wayfair)  was quite professional. Always good to deal with competent peeps. Sending out a fraud affidavit and closed the account. Exactly what they should do.

Edited by cashnocredit

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Update:

 

The 7-10 biz days they said to expect to get the fraud affidavit is up and no affidavit.

 

Wife called. Account still closed but it was after the fraud group closed for the day. They suggested emailing her an affidavit to fill out and asked for her email address. She provided it but the CSR was clearly astonished as it didn't match the email address they had on file. She read that email address back and it was the wife's full name with a few numbers appended on outlook.com. So she has the email addy the fraudster used opening the account.

 

My guess is that the fraud dept. ahd simply emailed the affidavit to the fraudster instead of snail mailing. Lovely.

 

Meantime she's put a fraud alert on her files and will be calling the fraud dept. tomorrow (They are open on Sat.). She's also filed a report with the FTC. Luckily she caught this early before any damage was done to her reports.

 

 

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23 minutes ago, shifter said:

Who has the time to commit ID theft for $700 in Wayfair crap? 

There's no accounting for how desperate, or stupid, some people get. I had some numbnut bill a $100 weekend fee for a campsite stay on My Chase card. They didn't even bother getting my name. Just made up a card number that passed the card number check and happened to be mine.  Takes all kinds.

Edited by cashnocredit

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You failed to mention that you were getting married, much less where you were registered...

 

Congrats!!

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Many years ago I had a "more stupid" person applying for credit in my name. All his applications were denied because he actually put his name on the application but used me as a co-applicant. I had good credit and he had bad credit. Bad credit won in the credit decisions.

The person was in the Denver Colorado area. I've never been to Denver and didn't know this guy. I did the fraud report stuff and talked to the Denver PD, that did nothing. The guy stopped applying on his own. It's been like 20 years, so he's moved on or is dead.

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1 hour ago, Burgerwars said:

The guy stopped applying on his own. It's been like 20 years, so he's moved on or is dead.

You forgot option 3: or is in prison

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10 hours ago, cv91915 said:

You failed to mention that you were getting married, much less where you were registered...

 

Congrats!!

Yeah, well we have been together most of the last 50 years and decided to formalize things. Mostly for legal reasons like if one of us was in the hospital or something even though we are both quite healthy. Need to face reality though.

 

As for getting "registered," we met after she was 18 so there is no registration, nor ankle bracelet trackers, required.  :)

 

Seriously, just a technicality. We've been best friends and sweeties for a very long time. Figured it was time to make it formal. Improves some aspects of estate planning like intra-spousal transfers without gift tax implications. Complicates others. We evaluated the plusses and minuses.

 

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6 hours ago, cashnocredit said:

Yeah, well we have been together most of the last 50 years and decided to formalize things. Mostly for legal reasons like if one of us was in the hospital or something even though we are both quite healthy. Need to face reality though.

 

As for getting "registered," we met after she was 18 so there is no registration, nor ankle bracelet trackers, required.  :)

 

Seriously, just a technicality. We've been best friends and sweeties for a very long time. Figured it was time to make it formal. Improves some aspects of estate planning like intra-spousal transfers without gift tax implications. Complicates others. We evaluated the plusses and minuses.

 

Then I guess I won't be able to anonymously send you a set of your dream steak knives or the butter dish that matches your china pattern.  😛  

 

Regardless...  it's a milestone to celebrate.  Cheers.  

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28 minutes ago, cv91915 said:

Then I guess I won't be able to anonymously send you a set of your dream steak knives or the butter dish that matches your china pattern.  😛  

 

Regardless...  it's a milestone to celebrate.  Cheers.  

So in addition to stealing toasters, you also steal silverware and butter dishes?  Figures.

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Wife pulled EQ, two hard inquiries on the same date in Aug. one of which resulted in the bogus account. EQ is the only CRA with any hard inqs and these were both on the same day.

 

Experian was pulled today and shows a new, 30 day late on the bogus account reported on the 18th. The account is shown as "Open" when she had asked the issuer to close the account on the 5th and they claimed they did so.

 

One of the odder things is that the addresses shown on her credit reports are all old, and established addresses. No new address associated with the new accounts. I take this to mean that the fraudster used her existing address when establishing the new credit account.

 

But, that should also mean that she should have received new account info and bills at our address. And we have not received a thing. Nor have we received the affidavit they purportedly mailed on the 5th. They have confirmed they have the correct mailing address several times.

 

So how is it even possible to have a 30 day late combined without ever receiving a single piece of mail in any way related to this new account given they have, and had, our current address?

 

Baffling.

 

On the positive side, she asked and they sent the affidavit by email. Requires images of DL, SS card, police and other reports, and notary. Will be going out tomorrow RRR.

 

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6 hours ago, cashnocredit said:

Wife pulled EQ, two hard inquiries on the same date in Aug. one of which resulted in the bogus account. EQ is the only CRA with any hard inqs and these were both on the same day.

 

Experian was pulled today and shows a new, 30 day late on the bogus account reported on the 18th. The account is shown as "Open" when she had asked the issuer to close the account on the 5th and they claimed they did so.

 

One of the odder things is that the addresses shown on her credit reports are all old, and established addresses. No new address associated with the new accounts. I take this to mean that the fraudster used her existing address when establishing the new credit account.

 

But, that should also mean that she should have received new account info and bills at our address. And we have not received a thing. Nor have we received the affidavit they purportedly mailed on the 5th. They have confirmed they have the correct mailing address several times.

 

So how is it even possible to have a 30 day late combined without ever receiving a single piece of mail in any way related to this new account given they have, and had, our current address?

 

Baffling.

 

On the positive side, she asked and they sent the affidavit by email. Requires images of DL, SS card, police and other reports, and notary. Will be going out tomorrow RRR.

 

Paperless statements would explain not receiving bills. But not the card. Do you have informed delivery? That would help show what you should have received in the mail, but I’m not sure how far back the history goes. Maybe the ID thief is local to you and got to your mail before you did. 

Edited by DPB

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8 hours ago, cashnocredit said:

Wife pulled EQ, two hard inquiries on the same date in Aug. one of which resulted in the bogus account. EQ is the only CRA with any hard inqs and these were both on the same day.

 

Experian was pulled today and shows a new, 30 day late on the bogus account reported on the 18th. The account is shown as "Open" when she had asked the issuer to close the account on the 5th and they claimed they did so.

 

One of the odder things is that the addresses shown on her credit reports are all old, and established addresses. No new address associated with the new accounts. I take this to mean that the fraudster used her existing address when establishing the new credit account.

 

But, that should also mean that she should have received new account info and bills at our address. And we have not received a thing. Nor have we received the affidavit they purportedly mailed on the 5th. They have confirmed they have the correct mailing address several times.

 

So how is it even possible to have a 30 day late combined without ever receiving a single piece of mail in any way related to this new account given they have, and had, our current address?

 

Baffling.

 

On the positive side, she asked and they sent the affidavit by email. Requires images of DL, SS card, police and other reports, and notary. Will be going out tomorrow RRR.

 

To the best of my knowledge Wayfair is just mail-order/online company, and does not have any brick and mortar stores.  I would ask the fraud department (when they contact her) what address the furniture/order(s) were delivered to and include that in on any police report you guys file should other accounts pop-up that are fraudulent. It's likely going to correspond to a house that is currently vacant/listed for sale.  We've had a handful of fraudulent cases at my work over the past two years and they've all had that in common - the use of addresses for homes that were vacant and listed on MLS's as being for rent or for sale when the accounts were underwritten/approved.  

Edited by gerray

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3 hours ago, DPB said:

Paperless statements would explain not receiving bills. But not the card. Do you have informed delivery? That would help show what you should have received in the mail, but I’m not sure how far back the history goes. Maybe the ID thief is local to you and got to your mail before you did. 

We have a POB since the post office doesn't deliver mail where we live. Upside is the POB is free. So no possibility of mail diversion.

 

We do have the email they used to open the account. It's the wife's name with a few digits tagged on. I'll bet the email account was opened just before the account was opened. They gave her a 5K CL so I'm surprised they didn't spend more.

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4 hours ago, cashnocredit said:

We have a POB since the post office doesn't deliver mail where we live. Upside is the POB is free. So no possibility of mail diversion.

 

I used to live in a place like that and it turned out there was.

 

The postmaster got caught and sent to prison. He was a hoarder so many of us then got piles of 6-12 month-old mail.

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17 hours ago, cashnocredit said:

One of the odder things is that the addresses shown on her credit reports are all old, and established addresses. No new address associated with the new accounts. I take this to mean that the fraudster used her existing address when establishing the new credit account.

 

But, that should also mean that she should have received new account info and bills at our address. And we have not received a thing. Nor have we received the affidavit they purportedly mailed on the 5th. They have confirmed they have the correct mailing address several times.

 

So how is it even possible to have a 30 day late combined without ever receiving a single piece of mail in any way related to this new account given they have, and had, our current address?

 

This part is easy to answer- in this day and age of electronic applications, many people select the option for no paper statements.  And where a business is online only, there is no card to be mailed out to actually put into a purse or wallet. 

 

I get sick of the lenders that bug me multiple times a month asking if I want to switch to paperless.  Not just no, but HELL NO!  I don't care if I am killing a tree...paper statements serve a purpose, a purpose that would actually have benefited CNC's wife.  Instead, a fraudster opens an account with a bogus email address, sets the account to paperless and CNC's wife is expected to be none-the-wiser. 

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5 hours ago, centex said:

This part is easy to answer- in this day and age of electronic applications, many people select the option for no paper statements.  And where a business is online only, there is no card to be mailed out to actually put into a purse or wallet. 

 

I get sick of the lenders that bug me multiple times a month asking if I want to switch to paperless.  Not just no, but HELL NO!  I don't care if I am killing a tree...paper statements serve a purpose, a purpose that would actually have benefited CNC's wife.  Instead, a fraudster opens an account with a bogus email address, sets the account to paperless and CNC's wife is expected to be none-the-wiser. 

I'm a fan of paperless but I download the pdfs and organize them in a financial folder. OTOH, I've never opened an account that was totally paperless at the start. At a minimum they sent a credit card and T&Cs and I had to switch to paperless.

 

But being able to open a credit account online with basic personal info and a newly created email that is totally paperless at the start is an invitation for massive ID theft fraud. Surprised there isn't more of it.

 

 

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37 minutes ago, cashnocredit said:

 

But being able to open a credit account online with basic personal info and a newly created email that is totally paperless at the start is an invitation for massive ID theft fraud. Surprised there isn't more of it.

 

 

 

Myopic viewpoint.

 

How is any potential creditor to know if n e-mail is newly created or not?  Also, even if they didn't allow paperless from the start, it would still take up to a month or so before you even got a statement.  BY then, the damage is done.

 

Just suck it up.  Unless of course, you want to complain that there should be no more account openings allowed online.  Then we'd have something to laugh about.

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12 hours ago, PotO said:

 

Myopic viewpoint.

 

How is any potential creditor to know if n e-mail is newly created or not?  Also, even if they didn't allow paperless from the start, it would still take up to a month or so before you even got a statement.  BY then, the damage is done.

 

Just suck it up.  Unless of course, you want to complain that there should be no more account openings allowed online.  Then we'd have something to laugh about.

Come on. Of course the credit grantor doesn't know when an email account was opened.

 

The problem is where an account can be opened with minimal personal info without taking the rudimentary step of mailing the person introductory materials. And the person who's ID was used is not even mailed a late notice when the first payment hasn't been made?

 

Opening a new account online is fine, but not notifying the person even after the account has been opened or even defaulted is, as I said, a recipe for easy fraud that can go a long time before being detected.

 

The  necessary personal information, SS#, DOB, Name and Address is widely available and not just from the Capital One hack. So you find it an acceptable process.

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26 minutes ago, cashnocredit said:

Come on. Of course the credit grantor doesn't know when an email account was opened.

 

The problem is where an account can be opened with minimal personal info without taking the rudimentary step of mailing the person introductory materials. And the person who's ID was used is not even mailed a late notice when the first payment hasn't been made?

 

Opening a new account online is fine, but not notifying the person even after the account has been opened or even defaulted is, as I said, a recipe for easy fraud that can go a long time before being detected.

 

The  necessary personal information, SS#, DOB, Name and Address is widely available and not just from the Capital One hack. So you find it an acceptable process.


Tilting at windmills much?

 

Creditors approve online applications every day with minimal personal information and without sending any "introductory material".  Whether you like it or not, it is not going to change.  Further, creditors do not mail you until it's much more serious than a 30-day late.  That's why God invented landlines and cellular phones.  
 

Fraud is rampant.  Take necessary precautions and when it happens deal with it.  
 

Even if they had sent you a letter informing you of the new account, it wouldn't have helped anything.  The thief chose Wayfair precisely because they give you instant access to credit without having to wait for a credit card in the mail.  By the time any letter reached your house, the fraudster already had his $700 and was long gone. 
 

Scammers like applying to those creditors that provide instant account numbers and access to the credit line without waiting for physical mail.  DW just applied for a Target RedCard and they give instant approvals with 1/2 the credit line available for immediate use while they mail you the plastic.  Military Star does the same thing.  It's not going to change just because you were victimized.  And if it did change, everybody here would be bitching and moaning about how creditor paranoia was making it difficult to finish Christmas shopping on time.

 

Your wife learned a valuable lesson -- maybe.  Fraud alerts are as useful as a screen door on a submarine.  When she needs to do -- what everybody needs to do -- is keep your reports frozen / locked.  

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14 hours ago, cashnocredit said:

I'm a fan of paperless but I download the pdfs and organize them in a financial folder. OTOH, I've never opened an account that was totally paperless at the start. At a minimum they sent a credit card and T&Cs and I had to switch to paperless.

 

But being able to open a credit account online with basic personal info and a newly created email that is totally paperless at the start is an invitation for massive ID theft fraud. Surprised there isn't more of it.

 

 

Be careful what you wish for.

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4 hours ago, PotO said:

Fraud alerts are as useful as a screen door on a submarine.  When she needs to do -- what everybody needs to do -- is keep your reports frozen / locked.  

Agreed. That’s the main reason why my reports are all frozen. Sure, it adds an extra step when applying for credit. But it’s usually only about 90 seconds to lift a freeze. Well worth it to prevent ID theft. 

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18 hours ago, PotO said:

Just suck it up.  Unless of course, you want to complain that there should be no more account openings allowed online.  Then we'd have something to laugh about.

Admittedly, we DO now have an entire generation that does not remember that there was a day when we actually had to put pen to paper to make application for a credit or charge card...or that department stores occasionally even gave things like dishes or flatware for submitting an application. 

 

I still remember some of the gas stations that would accept a competitor's card as payment in exchange for the application. 

 

Of course those were ALSO the days when we actually had to write out a check and put it in a stamped envelope to make a payment...

 

Ah...the good old days :)

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1 hour ago, DPB said:

Agreed. That’s the main reason why my reports are all frozen. Sure, it adds an extra step when applying for credit. But it’s usually only about 90 seconds to lift a freeze. Well worth it to prevent ID theft. 

I agree freezing is an excellent prophylactic. And she did freeze her credit reports which is much more effective than fraud alerts though alerts can be useful too as a means to reduce existing account takeover. The latter is pretty rare outside of family fraud. And the government has required free freezes since 2018. A PITA but effective.

 

Wife is old school. She writes checks for all her bank accounts and insists on paper bills. At least she doesn't write checks in a checkout line. Prior to this she had zero interest in checking her credit reports in spite of my coaxing.  She's on board now.

 

 

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