Fraud Bastard Guys

Don’t you hate those fraud bastard guys? You know the ones, the dudes and dudettes that rip off data and scam money from credit cards, bank accounts, etc. I’m not particularly worried about them, I think the most typical scam is using a credit card information and people are usually pretty protected from the banks. I think the worst ones I’ve heard about are the full-on identity theft where bank accounts are cleaned out and there isn’t any solid evidence of crime. Anyways, the reason I bring this up is because I was recently a pseudo-victim of fraud.

Several months ago there was a reasonably large news item with regards to the store “Winners” having their customer information hacked, and that they kept all sorts of credit card information on their servers. Apparently my credit card was one of the cards compromised. I found out about this last Friday when I was having problems accessing my card information online. I phoned the CC company and they asked me if I had recently got a new card. I said “no,” and then I was put on hold for a few minutes. I was then told about the Winners thing, that my card was flagged as being compromised, and that I was being issued a new card eventhough the card hadn’t been misused up until now.

When I first heard the story about Winners, it pissed me off not so much because of the fraud but because Winners had all of this information on file. Everyone was asking why a store would keep credit card information stored. The logical question that was asked was, “why doesn’t the government legislate that companies cannot keep credit card info on file?” Surprisingly, the government response wasn’t to restrict this behavior, but to legislate that if a company stores credit card information and if this information is compromised, then the company is legally required to report the compromise. Why Winners feels compelled to keep any information about me is beyond my comprehension. The other thing that pisses me off is why the hell I ever shopped at that POS store in the first place. I think I’ve only been there once, and come to think about it, they asked for my postal code at the checkout. Now why the hell would a store need my freakin’ postal code? I think I gave them a fake code. So now I have to go through all of my automatic withdrawal companies and tell them about my new card # (this includes phone, internet, gas, electricity, etc).

So here’s a big “up yours” to the fraud bastard guys, and another “up yours” to Winners, you bastard guy store.

New Mountain Bike

I picked up a new mountain bike on the weekend. I had finally heard back from my insurance company with regards to the garage theft, and everything was okayed to get a new bike.
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Once again, I bought the bike from WestPoint Cycles.

BTW, if you are a bike owner, Federation Insurance is the way to go because they don’t have any special limits or restrictions on bikes. I think they are now called Economical Insurance.

New bike, pt. 1

I bought a new bike yesterday to replace the stolen RM Summit. This type of bike is apparently the hottest market right now, they call them concrete bikes. They are made for city riding and commuting, but can also be used for touring or even cyclocross. I got the Rocky Mountain RC50 for $1100 from Westpoint Cycles.

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Either the garage door manufacturer or insurance will pay for this bike, along with another bike I hope to buy very soon. Once I get the second bike, I will also collect an excellent discount from Westpoint for buying two bikes. Previously I’ve bought three other Rocky Mountian mountain bikes from Westpoint: the ’91 Summit RL in 1992, an ’01 Element in 2002, and an ’02 Fusion in 2002. What can I say, I like Rockies and I like Westpoint. There are other bike shops in town I like, but they don’t carry Rocky….

Thieves take 1-0 lead over sluggo

Goody, more great news. It appears that my garage door opener opted to open on its own last night. Some nice people decided this meant that my two mountain bikes, cordless drill, drill set, and wrench set were free to to pick up. In some respects I guess I was lucky because they left behind things like: three more bikes, a scooter, tablesaw, sanders, box of garbage, vacuum, deepfreeze and a toy drill.

For now I’ve disabled the garage door opener and fastened some wood blocks just above the garage door such that it cannot be raised with completely wrecking the whole thing. I also bought one of those lock shields for the man door, but it didn’t fit. Tomorrow I will try and get one that fits. I also wanted to get an engraver to mark everything of value that is still in the garage. I went to Home Depot and Canadian Tire and they were both out of stock. By then it was 10pm and too late to go anywhere else.

A Vancouver Police Constable recommended the engraving. He said that once an item is visibly engraved, it becomes very difficult for the thieves to sell it.

I guess the good news from the whole thing is that I took some time tonight to fix the man door such that it opens and closes easier. I’d like to have it working properly when the thieves return tonight to smash it in and steal everything that is left in the garage.