Saturday, May 24, 2008

Eek, where's my money

I had my first experience with identity theft this past month. My PayPal account was compromised and someone was helping themselves to my money. What was annoying and a little frightening was that that account was tied to our debit card and so was actually taking our money out of checking. I found out when I checked my checking account to see if my economic stimulus package had bee deposited yet.

The thing that was very frightening was that I received no notice from PayPal that this was happening (not PayPal's fault by the way). Either on purpose, or by unhappy coincidence, had been added to my blocked senders list in my hotmail account. This meant that any message from PayPal was automatically deleted. I still don't know if my hotmail account was compromised as well. Of course, I have since changed both passwords.

Fortunately, no other information was changed and I was able to regain control of my account quickly. PayPal determined in about 5 days that the charges were fraudulent and refunded my money.

morals: do not use a debit card on line, do not have the same password to your email account as to PayPal.

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