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Credit Card Number Compromised: Citi Issues New Account Number, Cards

Written by admin - 14 Comments

Late last week, I received an envelope from Citi, but I didn’t get around to opening it until just this morning. In it, I found two new Citi Dividend Platinum Select cards along with a note saying that our old cards would stop working on June 30, 2008. Here’s the text of the insert:

IMPORTANT SECURITY MESSAGE!

Your account number may have been illegally obtained as a result of a merchant database compromise and could be at risk for unauthorized use. As a result, we have issued you a new Citi Card(s).

Please call the too-free number on the sticker affixed to the enclosed new card(s) as soon as possible. During that call we will activate your new card(s) for immediate use; this will automatically close your existing account number (the last 2 digits of which are indicated on the attached card carrier). These steps have been taken to reduce the risk of unauthorized use.

If you do not reply by the date indicated on the top of your card carrier, your existing account will be closed automatically. Please inform authorized users that this account number is being close. Also, please contact any service providers who automatically bill your account to provide them with your new account number. We regret any inconvenience that this may cause. Please be assured that Citi Cards is committed to safeguarding the security of our customers’ accounts.

Unfortunately, there was no indication of whose database had been compromised. I’m assuming that this problem wasn’t limited to Citi cards, though I haven’t heard from any other card issuers on this matter. Fortunately, we don’t really use this card for much anymore, so it won’t be hard to switch over to the new number.

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Published on June 16th, 2008 - 14 Comments
Filed under: Credit Card News, Identity Theft

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Comments (scroll down to add your own):

  1. Same thing happened to us (second time in less than a year) and we have spent several days trying to find out which merchant had the security problem – so we don’t do business with them again. Citibank referred us to Mastercard International, who referred us to the Central Fraud Department, who told us that it was being investigated and they would let us know when they have more information.

    Comment by Hadley Kilmer — Jun 30th 2008 @ 11:30 pm
  2. Same thing happened to us – 2nd time in three weeks – and no internet purchases were made with the new account number during that period. Also a Citicard. Both times Citicard phone staff contacted us about the compromised data (no hard copy mail) and both times we were advised they didn’t know and couldn’t say which merchant had a compromised data base. Very few purchases were made during the 3 week period the new card was active. However, it was 2.5 days after I notified the small group of “automatic billing” merchants about the new card that the most recent call regarding compromised data was received. Would you be interested in sharing/comparing merchant info? We received the newest card (third in the series…) today and, if it’s possible, would like to avoid giving the card number to the merchant not practicing “safe security”.

    Comment by M Des Rochers — Jul 22nd 2008 @ 6:41 pm
  3. Discover card account information compromised:
    Similar situation with me, as I received my new set of Discover credit cards in the mail, with the explanation:
    Why you’re getting a new card:
    “A merchant has advised us that your current Discover card account information may have been compromised.”
    So I called Discover customer service and explained that I am a very good customer for 21 years and I do not want to do business who can not secure my credit card information.
    Discover customer service politely told me this situation is still under investigation and the merchant name was not known. I offered to call be in 30 days, and customer service suggested I might still have to wait.
    I assumed risky merchants are paying customers to Discover and its not in their interest to “blacklist” them; so we will never know.

    Comment by John Walz — Jan 17th 2009 @ 5:49 pm
  4. We received 2 new Citibank cards yesterday as a result of the possible compromising of our cards….same message as above under heading IMPORTANT SECURITY MESSAGE!

    I called Customer Service and they said they do NOT know who the merchants are and the only way we would know is if they are published in the news! Now, isn’t that special!!!! I feel Citibank owes the information on the merchants at least to the cardholders. But, it doesn’t seem that is going to happen! Too bad!

    Comment by D Madison — Feb 3rd 2009 @ 2:10 pm
  5. I know the most likely answer, but I have to ask. This just happened to me, and I just got the new card today. Now, if I don’t reply by the date specified, Citi says it will close my account. Does this mean my account will be closed, even with a balance on the card? Does anyone know? I already can’t make payments to the “suspended” account, nor see the full balance.

    Thanks

    Comment by JKR — Feb 6th 2009 @ 12:51 am
  6. If you’re asking whether or not you’ll still have to pay the balance back, the answer is yes. Even if an account is closed, you are still responsible for the balance due. You just can’t use the card anymore.

    Comment by admin — Feb 6th 2009 @ 8:26 am
  7. Citi never notified me about my card being replaced or compromised. I was on vacation and my card suddenly wasn’t usable. I was in a mess as I needed a rental car , I cut my trip short. The representatives were so unhelpful. I will never use Citi cards again…and by the way , they never bothered to send me a new card although they told me one was being sent.

    Comment by Karl — May 2nd 2009 @ 3:49 pm
  8. I found this site after doing a google search about compromised Citi Cards, as I’m really irritated that holders of credit cards are not given complete information from their banks.

    I just found out about my card being compromised. While I appreciate Citibank acting proactively by issuing a new card, I do not appreciate how I was notified. (A phone call would have been nice just to let me know that a new card was being issued to replace my old card, followed by more formal communication such as a letter.) I found out about the problem initially when I went to check information on-line to ensure that my transactions were correct. (I check my account on-line very frequently, as once I was double-billed by a company. The company told Citi Cards that both charges were correct — when they weren’t — but Citibank still sided with the merchant. The merchant subsequently reversed both charges after I went to the company president.)

    I think it is absolutely horrendous that MY credit card company will not reveal HOW MY information was compromised. We should have an expectation that our financial information is protected by the merchants that we use. If that trust is broken, we should be told who broke that trust. That way, we can also have some idea about what other personal information might have been compromised.

    Comment by Colleen — May 14th 2009 @ 5:42 am
  9. I too was part of the latest Citi Card compromise. I have just become the victim of identity theft and low and behold one of the cards the thieves tried using was my old Citi Card Mastercard number!!! The one Citi Bank closed because of the possible compromise. There are also seven other cards at least that they have used online to make donations in my name. The state police say that that is how the theives are testing the card numbers. I have been receiving phone calls thanking me for my generous donations several times a day. One of them I donated to five times using a different card number and they all went through! We were able to trace the IP address of the computer used to a small town in Vietnam. That is when the police said there is no more that they can do. So now what???? I am trying to contact my insurance company because luckily I have Identity Theft Protection on my homeowners policy. I never expected to need it, but….I do. Identity theft is a very time consuming thing to happen. I have spent ALL of the past 3 days and have not gotten very far. I am sure this is only the tip of the iceberg! The Citi Bank rep just said they were sorry! Gee that really helped! HA

    Comment by Sandra — May 21st 2009 @ 5:49 pm
  10. I just had my Citi MC card replaced with no notification on 6/18/09. Seems like this has been going on for over a year now. There seems to be a big ongoing exposure, but customer service only told me that they would offer me 3 months of free identity theft protection instead of their usual 1 month free. Still end up having to pay in the long run. I wonder if this isnt some ploy to sell identity theft protection. How long an investigation do you think they are planning on? Must have a lot of resources on it, huh?
    I always use their Virtual Card Number service when dealing online, but this doesnt protect you when dealing directly with merchants.

    Comment by Richard — Jun 19th 2009 @ 3:36 pm
  11. Not sure if the 3 months of free identity theft protection from Citi MC card is a good offer or just another way for them to sale the program. They want you to agree your Citi MC will be automaticly charged for 10 dollar a month after 90 days free trial until you remember to cancell it!

    Comment by James — Jul 1st 2009 @ 10:53 pm
  12. I also had a card reissued due to customer data being stolen, but only one of two cards I have with Citibank. What is interesting is Citicard sent me a new card which is exactly like the other citicard I already have. So now I have 2 identical black diamond preffered reward cards, instead of one white and blue and one black.

    My wife and i differentiate our cards based on the color and know one is due on the 1st and the other the 15th. Now it is difficult to keep track of which is which. As banks and credit card companies seem to be looking for any way to increase profit it would seem like this failry innocent “lost information” scenario gave them the opportunity to try some tricks.

    I was unable to pay my balance on-line during the Lost Information period, although I am on a e-billing system. I was not notified by mail or by phone by Citicard and only realized this once I logged on to my account. I had to pay by phone for which they tried to charge me. The next month I went on-line and it showed a zero balance, so I did not make a payment. I just checked yesterday and it said I was past due, they jacked my APR to 25% and charged me about $60 in finance charges and late fees.

    When confronted they stated that I had missed a payment of 17.00 to which I replied that the website, my e-bill showed a zero balance. To my surprise they indicated that many customers were experiencing the same problem. To ensure my APR be reset, the late fees and finance charge creditted I opened a new Capitol One card and suggested I would transfer my balance. This seemed to do the trick as they were amenable to all my requests.

    My last concern is whether the late payment was sent to the credit bureaus and what about my interst rate going up on other lines of credit? I will be following up with Citicards Credit reporting division today and will updat this thread when I know more. I have been a card member for 13 years and have never missed a payment ever. My e-bill showed a zero balance and so I didn’t make a payment.

    Comment by Leith — Jul 10th 2009 @ 11:14 am
  13. I am in the Philippines and not sure if the people I left to screen my mail have opened all received mail yet. I am concerned that my card my have been compromised as I just looked on internet at the charges on my card during the last billing period. I saw charges that I do not recognize! So now, I am suspicious that I may be a victim of the theft. My card number is:4147 1105 5623 3297 exp 08/31/11. Name on card A T Kurz. I have a second card, same number issued to Gwyn Crisostomo. Thank you.

    Comment by Alexander T Kurz, Jr. — Jun 23rd 2011 @ 5:39 am
  14. To Alexander Kurz and anyone else in a similar situation — You should notify your credit card company IMMEDIATELY if you haven’t already done so… posting the numbers on any website puts you at further risk. You should also obtain a credit report from each of the credit reporting agencies.

    Comment by Colleen — Jul 23rd 2011 @ 2:45 pm

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