I recently opened a bank account approximately three (3) months ago. I noticed some highly unusual activity on this month's statement. I saw several unauthorized debits from American Leisure and five (5) other unknown companies to me.
How they got my bank information is very disturbing since I don't even buy online. I have made only a couple purchases at brick and mortor stores since I opened my account, so these events are even more peculiar to me.
I discovered that these companies had started debiting my account with less than noticeable $1.00 to $1.99 charges. A "Red Flag" was raised when the following month each company hit my account with separate amounts between $16.95 to $35.90.
It appears that once they had confirmed that they had a "live" account to manipulate then the bigger charges/debits began to hit my account the next month. In total, I have had nearly $100.00 taken without my authorization from these companies. I have neither received any services or products nor anything whatsoever to account for the exchange of these payments.
Curious, I went online and discovered how many reports have been made on these companies and printed out several pages to take with me to my local bank. I did as many others have and called the 800 numbers to "CANCEL" whatever the charges were linked to, although never speaking to a live person, only an automated system.
I immediately contacted my bank manager, who helped me file a dispute of the charges. The bank manager reviewed the pages of printouts and said that she would notify her supervisor as well in case other customer's may fall victim.
I filed a complaint with the Attorney General's Office of our State and I plan on contacting our District Senator and Congressman to bring awareness to them of this fraudulant consumer activity. I also have the notion to contact a newspaper reporter to write a story for further community awareness. As the saying goes, "the squeaking wheel gets the grease." I plan on writing a letter to many of our elected local and state officials and CC them, so many know that during these economic hard times, their constituents need protection and intervention. If it happened to me, it could easily be happening to one of them as well.