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Reader Comments on Aardvark Daily 25 March 2002

Note: the comments below are the unabridged submissions of readers and do
not necessarily reflect the opinions of the publisher.


From: Tim
For : The Editor (for publication)
Subj: ZED Card Readers

To quote from the article:

"The crazy thing is that they're pitching all this
additional security as a benefit to the cardholder -- but
it's not.

When a stolen card is used to fraudulently purchase stuff
on the Net it's not the card-holder who gets stung. Aside
from a small amount (usually $50 or so), it's the vendor
who ends up out of pocket because the card company normally
indemnifies the holder against such fraud."

Let me tell you a story.  In 2001 I bought a subscription
online to a firewall site.  They used a company (should I
name them?) for their credit-card processing.

Now everything was done properly - the site used SSL, full
encryption, everything was nice and secure.
Then somehow charges for sex sites (including one in which
the only language used was Hebrew - anyone here speak
Hebrew? 'cos I don't) starting appearing on the card.  And
they were being made through the same company that was
handling the firewall site's business.

So, someone in the firewall place or the credit-card
company was being a naughty boy.

Naturally I put in a disclaimer.  Now, as you say above I
was charged a small fee, but otherwise got my money back.
At the same time I asked the bank to stop processing
charges to my card if they came from that processing

At that point it got really complex.  See, the bank flat-
out refused to block the company's charges.  So I kept
making disclaimers and getting my money back.  Perhaps the
vendors were getting stung for the lost money.  Whoop-de-
doo.  I don't care.  I suffered a great deal of pain and
frustration - I even had to take time off work beacuse I
was so wound up I was just about hitting people.

It seemed that every day a new charge - usually over $100 -
would appear on my card.  The bank people were complete
wankers.  How is it if your card goes missing they can stop
charges to it, but if it's electronic they can't?  Explain
that one.

What ultimately happened - me not having used the card for
months - was that I paid off the debt (the small portion
that was actually mine) - waited until the disputed stuff
had been put through and the balance was zero, and closed
the account.

Now I haven't seen any charges since (woo-hoo!) but the
bank reckons they'll still put through anything for up to
five years.  Bastards.

So, if the ANZ can guarantee that ZED can't be used online
without the physical card in the reader (I'd lilke to know
how they're going to pull that off) then good on them.

Believe me, disputing a charge is not easy.  It causes lots
of anger and bad feelings, especially if you keep getting

So if someone else has to give up the money?  That's just
fine by me.

Doesn't seem crazy at all.

From: Mike M
For : The Editor (for publication)
Subj: Zed card/Credit cards/usury

Most of this fraud could be done away with by using a
international debit card instead of a credit card,
But we can not get such in N Z, unlike the U S.
I believe the banks do not want us to have international
debit cards because they will not make as much money out of
You can use a credit card as a debit card by having a small
credit limit on it say $100.00 max.
In this way if you buy a vase on ebay for $500.00 NZD you
can put in $400.00 on your card and they can only get that
amount of your money.
Of course the banks do not want you to do this because they
riley on human nature for us to pay interest, in other
words the banks are practising usury.
With ANZ for instance the minimum credit limit is $1000.00.
The National bank on the other hand has a minimum credit
limit of $100.00, good on them.
It is up to you how small a credit limit you have.
Not the banks!
The bank my mother uses kept giving her more and more of a
credit limit.
She is 87 and not quite all there.
I paid it off and cut up the card.
What a despicable thing to do to a little old lady, these
banks have no morels what so ever.
Thank god for the Kiwi bank at least they will not take
advantage of the old folk.

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