Citi Balance Transfer Fraud Flag

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Hi guys,
I have been ill for the past 8 months and racked up quite a few bills.  I had about $7000 in credit card debt that I know will be able to pay off within 6 months.

I checked around and discovered it would be cheaper in the long run to take advantage of a 0 balance transfer fee credit card instead of taking out a personal bank loan.  I went to Credit Karma and I have a high credit score so was able to get some great offers for Balance Transfer cards.  I decided to apply for a Citi card with a 0 balance transfer and 0 APR for 18 months.  They approved me with an available balance of $16,100.

My plan was to move $6000 of the debt over from my Bank of America CC and my Wells Fargo CC.  To see which way would go through faster, I set up one one for $4000 Wells Fargo online, and Citi verified that they had confirmed this and it was on the way.  For the other, I used one of the 0 fee balance transfer checks (yes I did check to make sure first that these were not considered cash advance so there really would be no fee) for the Bank of America.  I deposited the balance transfer check for $2000 into my BOA account.  I did this while ON THE PHONE with Citi while sitting in front of my bank rep.  I thought everything was good to go.

Two days later, I had a voicemail that I needed to call Citi with a reference number because they had questions about transactions.  I called the number on the back of my card and was put on hold once for ten minutes, then on hold again for 50 minutes, then finally talked to someone who asked me a MILLION questions to verify my identity.  He even asked me weird stuff about my ex-husband...he said can you verify your husband's name and birth date?  I said my EX- husband and I have been divorced for 5 years.  He said, "Oh is that right? Can you give me his phone number?  Also is he the person whose name is on this cell phone account?"  I said I have no idea - he's remarried and lives in another state.  He asked if anyone else lived with me.  I told him that my younger sister lives with me, and he asked to speak with her.  I told him she wasn't home.  He said we just need to speak to someone else that's there with you that can verify your identity.  I said but no one is here...

This man kept me on the phone for 45 minutes asking questions, then he told me that the account was being placed on hold and I would need to call back in 24-48 hours to find out the status of my Citi account. I asked him what I was supposed to do about the transfer to Wells Fargo and then balance transfer check I deposited to Bank of America.  He said he could not advise me and has no idea if they will go through or what will happen.  I would just have to wait and see what happens in 24-48 hours.

I am completely terrified and stressed out over all this.  My home mortgage is with Bank of America and I have my car payment with Wells Fargo.  I have a 760 credit score.  I am so afraid that this is going to mess it all up.  

Can anyone advise me who has been through a similar experience or may be able to suggest what I can do regarding the transfers to the other banks?

Thank you!!!

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Did you go to citibank branch, they can help you and verify who you are.

Sounds like a potential phishing scam - thieves might be after your personal information AND your ex's information. How they knew you had this new Citi credit card, I have no idea, but scammers are smart.

You said there was a voicemail, allegedly from Citi, telling you to call a number. Did you verify that number is actually a Citi number?

I think you should call the number on the back of the new Citi credit card and confirm with a customer service rep that everything you experienced was really legitimately Citibank asking you those questions.

Assuming this was all legit, there's not much to lose sleep over. It's piss poor customer service on the part of Shitibank, but that's not surprising to anyone on FW. Once they confirm all your information, the BT money will become available. Worst case, the original checks to BOA and WF will bounce, you'll get a returned check fee from both of them, and you'll have to pay a few extra days of interest on both those cards. Hopefully BOA and WF will waive the returned check fees based on your other business with them. Whether they waive those fees or not, you should be demanding that Citi reimburse you for those fees since they're the ones who created this mess.

DTASFAB said:   Sounds like a potential phishing scam - thieves might be after your personal information AND your ex's information. How they knew you had this new Citi credit card, I have no idea, but scammers are smart.

You said there was a voicemail, allegedly from Citi, telling you to call a number. Did you verify that number is actually a Citi number?

 OP wrote: "I called the number on the back of my card and was put on hold once for ten minutes..."
 

I think there is more to the story.  Way to much meaningless narrative - "I went to Credit Karma and I have a high credit score so was able to get some great offers for Balance Transfer cards. "???  

I'm having a hard time taking at face value that you 1) opened this card for the 0%, 2) only wanted to transfer $6k of your $7k credit card debt, 3) decided to experiment with your BTs, 4) deposited the check in your bank account instead of paying your credit card (while on the phone with Citi???), etc, etc.  I especially have trouble believing that a random someone standing next to you could confirm your identity for them.

All you can do now is watch all 3 of your accounts, and see where the money ends up.. Keep paying as you are told is required, until you see the BT transactions post to both the destination AND the source accounts.  No use fretting until you actually see something to fret about.  Clearly, they think you hijacked someone else's identity, but that's nothing to worry about unless you really are up to no good. 

indy800010 said:   I am completely terrified and stressed out over all this.  My home mortgage is with Bank of America and I have my car payment with Wells Fargo.As long as those loans are paid, this situation has nothing to do with them.

You cannot do much about the past. Chill for a few days. Make any minimum payments you can as if nothing happened to your old accounts.
Is there a Citibank location within a reasonable distance to you? IF yes, visit the location in person with your ID and all related information.
IF no Citibank location is in a reasonable distance, call about Sept 1.
Be businesslike, polite and asking for their help to understand what is happening. Showing maturity may save the day.
Ask for specific concerns, questions Citi may have.

Wow. Sorry you have to be the "NYC box" to check. It must be because its easy to "check" with you rather than actual cases of identity/credit card theft.

Sounds like they used public records to verify your identity, which is very common when you make large transfers on new cards like this. Having to wait two days to find out the status of your account isn't, but then Citi isn't really known for spectacular customer service.

My advice: Don't stress, this won't impact your other loans at all. Keep making minimum payments on your cards until you've confirmed the transfer funds have been applied to your existing cards (always do this with a balance transfer, since they can take a couple weeks to go through). Call back in a couple days to make sure everything's good (90% chance it will be).

indy800010 said:   ...He even asked me weird stuff about my ex-husband...he said can you verify your husband's name and birth date?  I said my EX- husband and I have been divorced for 5 years.  He said, "Oh is that right? Can you give me his phone number?  Also is he the person whose name is on this cell phone account?"  I said I have no idea - he's remarried and lives in another state.  He asked if anyone else lived with me.  I told him that my younger sister lives with me, and he asked to speak with her.  I told him she wasn't home.  He said we just need to speak to someone else that's there with you that can verify your identity.I would tell anyone asking these questions to go fsck themselves. Especially the last part about speaking to someone else in the same house makes absolutely no sense -- you were the one who called, he didn't call you, so he has no way to authenticate the other person.

You should be more mindful about what you disclose to strangers (or friends).

This is one of the better troll posts lately.

What exactly is the point of these posts? Where is the enjoyment by the "troll"? Just seeing replies to a post about a random thing that didn't happen? I don't get it.

I really find it hard to believe that Citi would ask to speak to your little sister and trust the word of a random female voice to verify a cardholder's identity.

Was there any pharmaceutical recreation involved before this call?

Or maybe the male CSR thought you sounded cute and wanted to make sure nobody else was home with you during the day. I'd keep my doors locked.

when FW regs don't understand a post, it's "flame." (it might be. but OP described a situation that I'm familiar with).

the "verify your own identity bit" is not as good as it once was, since criminals have made adjustments. nowadays, they hijack an identity & learn a lot about it, allowing them to pass basic "ID checks."

for that reason, some businesses are now asking to speak to somebody associated with one's address.

I ran into such a predicament last year, when I purchased some items online. The merchant's fraud specialist asked me 20 questions about my identity. then I was asked to let the fraud specialist speak to a person connected to my address. That person was unavailable. so I was then asked 20 questions about that person's identity. I gave correct answers. so you'd think that would've been enough, right? nope. I then had to fax copies of both my DL AND that of the person connected to my address. the transaction eventually went through, since I supplied the requested info.

(identity theft is a bit harder nowadays, at least for some thieves).

"New member" OP
"New member" post above with similar story.
Am I reading too much into this?



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