Shoppers - Doing what comes naturally--
So far so good this holiday season with pre-black Friday Thanksgiving Thursday, Black Friday and Cyber Monday seeing increases in participation that indicates to us not just a desire to buy from consumers but follow through action at the register in person or on-line.
In our “on the ground” “mano a mano” experience, we noticed shoppers were very focused on “deal” items at the expense of “no deal” items. We are in the observers’ camp that remains cautiously optimistic about the results that retailers will realize after the last shopper checks out this holiday season.
While the parking lots were packed on our visits to the retail landscape last week, we couldn’t help but notice that while shopping carts were full of sale “specials”—including some folks at Wal-Mart with two flat screen TVs at $188 ea. —-there weren’t a lot of folks burdened with overflowing shopping bags clogging the aisles.
CYBER MONDAY ORDERS
1. Printed all the packing slips last night.
2. Packing all the orders today.
3. Shipping them out tomorrow.
4. You should receive your orders by early next week*.
*If you ordered a shirt that was backordered, it may take a couple weeks to receive your order. Sorry for the delay.
Mahalo for your support everyone & Happy Holidays.
Bank of America Fraud Monitoring is getting to be really annoying….
I monitor my account online regularly, and subscribe to all the email notifications. Last year just before Chicago TARDIS 2010 (shortly after booking shuttle service), I saw suspicious charges appearing on my Visa card.
I called about them, and immediately they said it was fraud activity….that they were closing my account immediately and that I wouldn’t be liable. But, it was going to be a couple of weeks before I got a new card…so I didn’t have a Visa card to use at Chicago TARDIS.
Which is why I didn’t preregister at the end of that convention…though I was worried if they would want me to produce the card I hard preregistered for 2010 with, in lieu of finding where my letter had gone to. Years ago I had concert tickets at will-call, but just before that trip…the card fell victim (and I wasn’t really able to keep a close eye on what happened to my card that mall trip, because I made some purchases after getting an eye-exam, including dilation, at the lenscrafters in the mall….though the transactions were in the eye doc’s office and later the lenscrafters. I miss the lenscrafters eyeglass wipes, can’t seem to find them anywhere else.) That one they did want to see the card I had reserved the tickets under (though they just needed to see it, the tickets were paid for…)
Since then….every so often, I get calls from Bank of America Fraud Monitoring….because they think my normal usage of the card is suspicious. Yes, they frequently deny charges from NewEgg for some reason. And, it was one reason I stopped shopping at NewEgg in general…but last weekend, I browsing the online sites for black friday/cyber monday specials….and saw something I wanted. Actually, I was browsing deals.woot.com, and it sent me to NewEgg. It was basically something I wish I had while I was at Chicago Tardis this year. Well, Bank of America just denied the charge…so had to resubmit payment to get the item. It didn’t trigger a fraud notification, etc.
And, yesterday the transactions weren’t unusual for me either. I bought a couple of items on woot (one from the main, and one from shirt woot)…and then on the way home from work, I picked up my prescription refills (Nadolol, Nuvigil, Lunesta)….$264.01 Nice that cost of Nuvigil has gone down ($52.80), but seems the price of Lunesta has gone up ($7.57). Actually the cost for Nuvigil has gone up as well, but it crossed from tier 3 to tier 2…so my out of pocket on it is lower.
The cost of Nadolol has also doubled…in that the new script from the doctor is only for 30 day supplies…which cost the same when the original script allowed me to get 60 day supplies. So, 92 cents when I was getting a 60 day supply…and 92 cents for the 30 day supply. Though now that I’m back on it, it doesn’t seem to be helping my tremor as much as it was before.
Anyways….they called me, left a voicemail to call this number. But, I called the number, but the automated voice didn’t identify who/what I had called. And, it wasn’t a number that matched my card, etc. So, I wasn’t interested it account or ssn type info. Got a person, what they could do for me….well, nothing, I’m calling the number because of the cryptic voicemail I got. And, I haven’t heard anything to say that I should’ve called. But, they went with just my name and my email address and then rattled off my various recent charges. All normal-ish transactions….general online activity shopping use of the card is normally mid-month…but usage is consistent with Thanksgiving weekend usage….charge to Alien Entertainment, some charges to various sites having cybermonday sales, then a couple of woot purchases…which always go to visa via paypal, because that’s how I’ve set up my woot account…and pharmacy visit…. where I almost always use my visa card at (the exception was earlier this year, when I had money on my FSA debit card or when Discover is offering 5% cash back bonus for pharmacy usage)
Plus I still monitor my account regularly online (though it is annoying that Bank of America doesn’t do daily downloads to quicken of my activity, only manual of when the statement comes out…and since I’ve already cleared all the transactions from my other monitoring, the download makes a mess of things) And, subscribe to all the email alerts.
The email alert is how I tell if I won a Bag of Crap, since I get it before the site returns to normal and can tell me that I won (though these days it seems to time out rather than just make me wait a really long time, so have to refresh a lot to actually ‘win’). OTOH, I still don’t know if I got what I ordered from Brookstone on Cybermonday, because there’s no online account system….and the server went away after I submitted payment (I got the email notification from Bank of America of the authorized pending transaction with Brookstone). But, I can’t find out online if the order actually happened and what its tracking number is. Hopefully UPS My Choice will tell me about it soon.
Meanwhile…I then go online to check my account, its been locked out…says I need to call a different number than the voicemail or visit www.myfraudprotection.com. Well, I click the link….except that the resulting site is not named this….the title of the page is “myfraudprotection.com”, but its a subdomain of some where else, though it is SSL….but hmmm, is it right?
A little more annoying on verification…have to give it my whole account number, last 4 of social, zip code, and then 4 multiple choice questions of instant credit report verify style.
I subscribe to Credit Secure through American Express…and it is the first of the month, when I get one of two free credit reports that I can get each month.
It shows a much longer list of all my pending and posted transactions…and I confirm they are right.
But, still no access to my account online. Check a few more times during the evening, still no go. Check again this morning, still can’t get to it. Call that new number….and the explanation is that it can take 1-48 hours to get access back. Call back after 48 hours….
I probably read ScamBusters, SANS, RISKS, etc. and working enterprise IT and worry about IT security too much, has made the whole process more worrisome than Bank of America thinks people should worry?