These guys at Dena Car Rental apparently think it's okay to keep all of your credit card numbers on file so they can charge to it at will if they feel like it months later.
I had given Dena Car Rental (agent for Rent-A-Wreck Montreal West) my credit card number in January 2011 in order for them to perform a ONE-TIME charge to help out friend that couldn't pay the additional charges on her rental. Little did I know that Dena would keep my credit card number on file.
In July 2011, my friend rented another car from Dena, and even though she rented the car with her own credit card, they decided to charge my card for the rental......and then much more all without authorization. It was $2000 worth of charges (4 X $500) on my card in one day! When trying to get in touch with them to clear up what I thought had been a mistake on their part, I was given the typical runaround answers: "Oh it must have been an accounting mistake, this is something that our accountant has to handle, but she's on lunch" or "Our accountant is off today", I even got 'accidentally' disconnected multiple times when I was on hold waiting for their accountant.
After realizing that this company is a bit more shady than I initially thought (due to their refusal to talk to me), I looked at my credit card history and found that they also charged me $1300 (6 X $217) back in February 2011 without authorization. I tried to dispute all of these charges but since too much time had passed since Feb 2011, VISA said they couldn't do anything.....I guess my fault for not being diligent in analyzing my credit card bill every month. I was however able to file a dispute for the $2000 in July.
I had placed a block on my credit card so nothing else can be charged to it, but I found out the hard way that merchants can 'force through' a charge even on cards that have been blocked. In August 2011, Dena once again charged me for an additional $883 in August 2011 by 'forcing through' these charges. They used the authorization code they got for my one-time charge back in January 2011 to 'authorize' these additional transactions. This is scary knowing that a merchant can do this. I currently have a dispute filed for this $883 of charges as well.
I'm currently in the hole for a rough total of $4200 because of these unauthorized charges by Dena. Luckily I was able to file a dispute for $2893 of it, and VISA should find in my favour......but the remaining $1300 from the February charges are lost to this fraud by Dena.
If these guys are so bold to keep doing this to me, I wonder how many other people they've done this to. They probably try this on people who they don't think will keep a very watchful eye on their credit card statements (which is who I was until July). I wonder how many times they've gotten away with this.
I wonder if there is any legal recourse I can take to recover the $1300 of charges from Feb 2011 (since I can longer dispute these charges).