That happened to me once. I reported it to my bank & gave them permission to file a police report on my behalf. Eventually they caught the woman. Dumb woman ordered delivery pizza to her home. The card was flagged to call the bank if anyone tried to make a charge on it. The pizza place called the bank & the bank got the lady's address. Instead of a delivery boy, the police showed up at her door. She had to return/pay for everything & got criminal charges filed against her.
My mom had a card that had someone put through charges even though the card was in her possession. Turns out it was a waiter at a restaurant she had visited several months prior. He wrote down her card number & security code whilst ringing up her dinner. That took longer because he didn't make another purchase for a while & had sent it to a PO Box, but they caught him too.
Please do think about
whether you really want to get rid of your credit card. I know it's awful to have your credit information stolen. I know I felt horrible when it happened to me. But my bank didn't hold me responsible for any of the charges. In this day of electronic check processing, people can much more easily steal check numbers & use that to clear out your checking account. I've seen it happen. And usually it is very difficult, if not impossible, to get that stolen money back from the bank. There are some good options to protect your credit information. If they didn't
open a brand new credit account, your identity was not stolen, just your card.
If they ordered a prescript
ion, they should be able to catch the guy. I'm not sure if you order anything over the internet -- that's the easiest way for people to steal your card information. If you do order over internet, you can use PayPal instead of giving your card numbers to the merchant. Then all they see is your paypal account. If you don't keep any money sitting in your PayPal account (and PayPal reminds you if you have money in there for more than 30 days) then thieving people can't steal a dime. But unfortunately that doesn't help with in-person purchases. One thing that was suggested to me was to buy a re-fillable AmEx gift card. I was able to put just enough money on it to cover a purchase when I went out, but if someone stole that number there wouldn't be any money to take. Not all the credit gift cards have that feature. If you buy Visa or MC gift card, read the terms because in some cases they will hold you liable if the card is used with no money on it (kinda like overdraft protection).
I just worry about
you carrying money around town with you. I know so many people who have been robbed & lost hundreds of dollars in cash. I'm guessing you live in Aurora. I used to teach in W Aurora and know some of the teachers I worked with were victims of purse snatchers or purse pick-pockets more than once. Not to mention that a few people actually got their purses or wallets taken from them forcefully.
I'm sure you are already doing most if not all of this stuff, but just in case, here's the FTC's recommendations to prevent people from stealing your card number: www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre07.shtm
. If you're already doing all that, maybe it's time to get a new credit card company. There are people at the card imprinting factories who will steal the card numbers before they go out & some hackers will hack into the company's database (this is phenomenally hard to do, but does happen sometimes). Maybe there is a dishonest employee at your card company. If it's happened that many times & they haven't caught someone it seems unlikely that it's just a single person at a place you frequent. Maybe you have the worst luck in the world, but I would wonder about
the card company if it happened to me 7 times. Good grief! I'm so sorry for you. This is the last thing that you needed right now.
Hang in there! You'll get through this too, but I know it's gotta be sooo, sooo hard. We're here for you.