ED Magedson – Founder
Citizens Bank, Waltham716 Main Street Waltham, Massachusetts USA
Citizens Bank Credit Card Fraud Waltham Massachusetts
On October 9th, my wife had her wallet stolen from her purse while at a Panera in Dorchester, MA. Sarah canceled her credit cards as soon as she returned home that evening, but the person who stole her wallet had already made several purchases. Sarah thought that she might also have been carrying a blank check in her wallet. Worried about the potential for fraud, we went to our local Citizens Bank (716 Main Street in Waltham, MA) on the morning of October 10th to open a new checking account.
At the bank we were helped by a young man named Armando. We told Armando about Sarah’s wallet being stolen and that we wanted to open a new checking account to protect against fraud. I had also been wanting to open a savings account as a place to separately store the part of my salary that I will have to pay in Social Security (this is not automatically reduced from my paycheck as a clergyperson) so we asked him to open up a new savings account for us, while he was at it.
The whole transaction was going smoothly. Then, Armando asked us a straightforward and seemingly innocuous question: “Would you like to open up a credit card through Citizens Bank today?” Both Sarah and I verbally responded with equally straightforward answers: “No, we don’t need any new credit cards; we are more than happy with the ones we already have.”
Armando then asked if he could send us a credit card oﬀer in the mail. “If you don’t want the card, you can shred it and not worry about it.” Sarah and I get credit card oﬀers in the mail all the time so we agreed.
Armando then proceeded to put documents in front of us for us to sign to open our new accounts. After we signed these physical documents, Armando asked Sarah and I to sign our names on an electronic pad. We signed where we were told to. Armando told us we were just about done and that he just had to go get some printouts for us. At this point I was running late for a meeting so I left and Sarah stayed behind to collect the documents.
I walked out of the bank generally content with the service Armando had provided in opening our new savings and checking accounts. No documentation telling us about the terms and conditions of any credit card were included in the packet Armando gave to Sarah after I left.
On the week of October 14th, I received a credit card from Citizens Bank in the mail. Assuming it was just the credit card oﬀer Armando said he would be sending, I shredded it just as he had instructed. I threw the enclosed papers into the recycle bin without reading them because I was simply not interested in having another credit card.
Needless to say, I was quite surprised when, on the week of October 21st, I received the first statement for my new Citizens Bank credit card. What’s more, it was a credit card with a $12,000 limit!
Even more surprised was Sarah when, on October 29th, she received the frst statement for her new Citizens Bank credit card, a card that she had never even received.
It would seem that Armando either opened these cards without our permission or intentionally deceived my wife and I to open them. His actions were unethical, if not out and out fraudulent (my money is on the latter given the length Armando went to to trick us into opening credit cards.)
At this point the bank closed the credit cards that Armando fraudlently opened. Hoever, the Office of the Chairman has responded to a CFPB complaint saying that they are "handling the matter internally." On the phone a spokesperson for the office told me that this "handling" will involve "coaching" of some sort or another.
As a customer of Citizens Bank for well over a decade and of Key Bank (another RBS-owned entity) before that, I have to say that that is not good enough. Do banks and their employees have no accountability when they break the law?
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 11/23/2013 07:07 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Citizens-Bank-Waltham/Waltham-Massachusetts-02451/Citizens-Bank-Credit-Card-Fraud-Waltham-Massachusetts-1101648. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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