WHO may not do this?


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

     Log on to my electricity company to update my payment information, as my credit card expires this month.  The new card, which I've already received, has a different expiration date and CVV, but the same account number.  I log in, and the old card is saved as "Payment Method 1."  I click the button to edit it, and change the expiration date, hit submit, and it comes back and says "you may not use the last four digits of your credit card number in your payment method nickname.  Sure enough, it's now "Payment Method 1 xxxx."

     Good job, TXU Energy!

     



  • You have no choice but to report this card as stolen, that way you will get a new number and you will be able to bypass the problem. It's a good thing anyways, makes it easier to cancel recurring membership fees to that "adult entertainment" website.



  • I think you missed the point of the post -  Frostcat amended one field and data leaked to another field.

    If the "payment method nickname" is intended to be a PK (or unique, at least) then changes to other columns having an impact upon this data is certainly a WTF. At the very least, there's no explanation of how it became tainted by the contents of other fields.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Speakerphone Dude said:

    You have no choice but to report this card as stolen, that way you will get a new number and you will be able to bypass the problem. It's a good thing anyways, makes it easier to cancel recurring membership fees to that "adult entertainment" website.
    Since that doesn't work with recurring payments set up before the card was 'stolen' (recurring payments are set up against the account, not the card number used to set it up,) this is particularly wrong advice.



  • @PJH said:

    Since that doesn't work with recurring payments set up before the card was 'stolen' (recurring payments are set up against the account, not the card number used to set it up,) this is particularly wrong advice.

    Not in the US that I've ever seen. We always forget to update some of them after the number gets changed, leading to angry letters or phone calls when the card stops working.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @boomzilla said:

    Not in the US that I've ever seen. We always forget to update some of them after the number gets changed, leading to angry letters or phone calls when the card stops working.
    Always? Continuous Payment Authority is always set up against the account, rather than the card. Unless CPA isn't as common (and odious) in the US as the UK? I've had a CPA with the AA (for too long) and they've never had a problem charging against either the new card when the old one ran out, and the next one that I got when I reported the previous one lost.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @PJH said:

    @boomzilla said:
    Not in the US that I've ever seen. We always forget to update some of them after the number gets changed, leading to angry letters or phone calls when the card stops working.
    Always? Continuous Payment Authority is always set up against the account, rather than the card. Unless CPA isn't as common (and odious) in the US as the UK? I've had a CPA with the AA (for too long) and they've never had a problem charging against either the new card when the old one ran out, and the next one that I got when I reported the previous one lost.
    In the US, it's a little weird how we handle the stolen CC deal. The whole account gets cancelled and a duplicate reopened. So CPA, even when used (which is rare - the standard mode here is for the CC# to be kept on file and re-charged as a normal one-time transaction), dies. Industry paranoia.



  • @PJH said:

    @boomzilla said:
    Not in the US that I've ever seen. We always forget to update some of them after the number gets changed, leading to angry letters or phone calls when the card stops working.
    Always? Continuous Payment Authority is always set up against the account, rather than the card. Unless CPA isn't as common (and odious) in the US as the UK? I've had a CPA with the AA (for too long) and they've never had a problem charging against either the new card when the old one ran out, and the next one that I got when I reported the previous one lost.
    In the US, the two forms of automatic payment I've used are: (a) card-based (debit/credit), or (b) electronic funds transfer/direct account withdrawal. For A, the card expires, there's no inherent authority for them to continue getting your money; every time they want a withdrawal they initiate a transaction as if they have the card present. The result is the same as if they swiped your expired card and it was denied. For B, I've never seen an expiration date. They get your bank account number and routing number. So long as there's money in the account, they'll always get it.


    The experience I've had is that a company will offer one or the other, but not both. I feel more comfortable allowing utilities to have electronic funds transfer, so I've set them up that way. Organizations that I may want to quit on a spur-of-the-moment situation I'll either not give automatic withdrawal of any kind or I'll do debit/credit card. That way I have the option of easily canceling the card if they go rogue and I can stop the flow of funds.



  • As an American, I would like to mention that I've never seen the acronym "CPA" used to refer to anything other than "Certified Public Accountant". You Europeans and your crazy made-up play words!


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @nonpartisan said:

    For A, the card expires, there's no inherent authority for them to continue
    getting your money; every time they want a withdrawal they initiate a
    transaction as if they have the card present.
    That sounds like they keep your card details (including the CVV[card verification value - the 3 digit number printed on the signature strip] for CNP [cardholder not present] transactions) on file - I'm not sure, but I'm of the opinion they shouldn't be doing that.@nonpartisan said:
    (b) electronic funds transfer/direct account withdrawal.
    That sounds like, what in the UK would be called, a direct debit. You can't have a direct debit on a credit card - only a bank account. Not that it stops the likes of car insurance companies using CPAs on current accounts



  • @PJH said:

    That sounds like they keep your card details (including the CVV[card verification value - the 3 digit number printed on the signature strip] for CNP [cardholder not present] transactions) on file - I'm not sure, but I'm of the opinion they shouldn't be doing that.
    I've had sites ask for the CVV on individual transactions, but I don't recall ever having a site ask for it for recurring payments.  Again, not all sites do -- I updated my Amazon information yesterday during an order and all I had to change was the expiration date.  But yes, they definitely keep the number and expiration date on file.  (Really, that's all you need -- not even the CVV.  I've had merchants [that I've known for a long time and they know me] run a card-absent transaction by entering the number and expiration into the machine without needing the CVV.)

    @PJH said:

    That sounds like, what in the UK would be called, a direct debit. You can't have a direct debit on a credit card - only a bank account. Not that it stops the likes of car insurance companies using CPAs on current accounts
    I've never had a problem with my insurance withdrawing inappropriately from my bank.  I don't have a problem with utilities having direct access because I'm not expecting to move anytime soon.  But if I had a service like Netflix, or Weight Watchers, or any of these other things where I could decide at any time to stop being a member, I would give them a debit/credit card for auto-payment.  But both forms of automatic payment are commonly used.  Of the two, I actually feel better with giving them credit/debit details for the ease of changing the number; to change my bank account number would cause a snowball of other side effects (having new checks printed, potentially having checks in circulation bounce, having to update my information with HR for direct deposit, etc.).  (And no, we don't use paper checks often, but still every once in a while, enough that it would be a hassle.)



  • @blakeyrat said:

    As an American, I would like to mention that I've never seen the acronym "CPA" used to refer to anything other than "Certified Public Accountant". You Europeans and your crazy made-up play words!
    Furthermore, saying "I've had a CPA with the AA (for too long)" makes me wonder why you continue to hire an accountant who drinks so much he had to join a support group for it.



  • @PJH said:

    I've had a CPA with the AA (for too long) and they've never had a problem charging against either the new card when the old one ran out, and the next one that I got when I reported the previous one lost.
     

    I have.

    Not with the AA, but I've had to update some details (ebuyer, domain registrar, ISP) where a CC was used as payment method and the CVV and/or expiry date changed, causing some payments to be rejected.



  • @Cassidy said:

    Not with the AA, but I've had to update some details (ebuyer, domain registrar, ISP) where a CC was used as payment method and the CVV and/or expiry date changed, causing some payments to be rejected.
    Parse error: too many acronyms in sentence.

     



  • @PJH said:

    @nonpartisan said:
    For A, the card expires, there's no inherent authority for them to continue getting your money; every time they want a withdrawal they initiate a transaction as if they have the card present.
    That sounds like they keep your card details (including the CVV[card verification value - the 3 digit number printed on the signature strip] for CNP [cardholder not present] transactions) on file - I'm not sure, but I'm of the opinion they shouldn't be doing that.
    Not necessarily. The processor we use allows us to submit any transaction without a CVV. We simply store the card number (we actually store a token that the processor uses as a surrogate for the card number) and the expiration date and submit new charges whenever we need to. CVV and address verification are for the benefit of the seller, so the processor doesn't really care. However, if you submit a card-not-present charge without a CVV, then you are 100% responsible for chargebacks. We also get a slightly better rate for charges that use CVV and AVS.

    For us, the fact that the initial charge went through with a valid CVV is enough for us to be confident that they hold the card. The fact that they didn't dispute the first charge is enough or us to be confident that they approve the transaction being charged on this card. Re-submitting CVV wouldn't add any value.

    If someone does refuse a charge, we simply send them a bill for the outstanding balance. Since we only let people use credit cards when we are confident that we know their real address, our normal collections process then kicks in.



  • @nonpartisan said:

    I feel more comfortable allowing utilities to have electronic funds transfer, so I've set them up that way.

    Bad idea. There are countless stories of utility companies f-ing up their customers' accounts. I've had it happen to me where the meter reader got the number wrong and I got billed for $18,000+ worth of electricity one month. I called up the electric company and they told me to just pay what I usually pay and the difference would get sorted out the following month. If I had set them up with EFT, it would have drained my account (sadly, I'm not able to keep $20,000 in my checking account at all times).

     The only thing that should be set up using EFT is fixed amount payments.



  • I had an issue where the electric company's meter stopped working, and they didn't notice for a full month and a half (we're billed once every two months, for some reason I don't understand but I believe sums up to: laziness). Since they had no idea how much power I used, and I had no idea how much power I used, we had to do this stupid long negotiation process over the phone over it. "Well last year during this month you spent X" "Yeah, but last year I was using that old electric boiler for heat, now I'm not." "Well do we have a month in the records with the new boiler?" "Sure, use Y." "But the weather was really warm during Y so its too low!" etc etc. PITA.



  • @FrostCat said:

     Log on to my electricity company to update my payment information, as my credit card expires this month.  The new card, which I've already received, has a different expiration date and CVV, but the same account number.  I log in, and the old card is saved as "Payment Method 1."  I click the button to edit it, and change the expiration date, hit submit, and it comes back and says "you may not use the last four digits of your credit card number in your payment method nickname.  Sure enough, it's now "Payment Method 1 xxxx."

     Good job, TXU Energy!

    Sheesh. Another poorly written description of something.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Since they had no idea how much power I used, and I had no idea how much power I used, we had to do this stupid long negotiation process over the phone over it.

    Wow, that's really nuts. How did it end up? I would have thought that since their meter screwed up, they should have to take the loss.



  • @Xyro said:

    @blakeyrat said:
    Since they had no idea how much power I used, and I had no idea how much power I used, we had to do this stupid long negotiation process over the phone over it.

    Wow, that's really nuts. How did it end up? I would have thought that since their meter screwed up, they should have to take the loss.

    I negotiated him down pretty far, like 50% of the rate I paid last year those same months. I also brought up the whole, "why the hell should I have to pay anything if there's no evidence anywhere I used the power?" and he said they could send me to collections for it, so negotiating a price was kind of the less-PITA of the two options, since collections companies are basically staffed by jackals.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    I also brought up the whole, "why the hell should I have to pay anything if there's no evidence anywhere I used the power?" and he said they could send me to collections for it

    That implies that they can just make up a number to charge you. Which, who knows, maybe they can. ... Maybe... that's what they always do? It's not like we can really know. Sounds like a good business if you can get into it!!



  • It might have been a bluff, but I wasn't going to take the risk that there existed some legislation allowing them to bill even when they don't have any meter data. I'm sure as fuck not going to read all the legislation involving power company billing, and it's not as if I wasn't expecting to pay something for my power anyway. You know how it is.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    @Xyro said:
    @blakeyrat said:
    Since they had no idea how much power I used, and I had no idea how much power I used, we had to do this stupid long negotiation process over the phone over it.

    Wow, that's really nuts. How did it end up? I would have thought that since their meter screwed up, they should have to take the loss.

    I negotiated him down pretty far, like 50% of the rate I paid last year those same months. I also brought up the whole, "why the hell should I have to pay anything if there's no evidence anywhere I used the power?" and he said they could send me to collections for it, so negotiating a price was kind of the less-PITA of the two options, since collections companies are basically staffed by jackals.

    Collection companies are a weak threat. On a consumer dispute they have no legal power at all, they cannot seize things, hurt credit score or do any of the stuff they threaten to do. If they make too many calls you can even file a complaint with the police. They act like the IRS but they are just a scarecrow for people who don't know better.

    As for the power company, if I was you I would wait until I get the bill and then I'd call back saying there is an error and that based on the last information you have you should have been billed $0 and that you want a credit. This is called nibbling. You may end up getting a credit, and worse case scenario you'll end up paying what you would pay if you did not try, this is worth a shot.



  • Ok well get in your time machine, go back 3 years and give me that advice.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Ok well get in your time machine, go back 3 years and give me that advice.

    Get me some cheap hard drives while you're there.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Ok well get in your time machine, go back 3 years and give me that advice.

    It's not too late to call and get the credit. You can say: hey I was going thru my files and noticed this problem, please fix it. But maybe the emotional payoff of being able to bitch about it is more valuable to you than getting some of your money back.

    By the way I do have a time machine but it only goes forward. It's very easy to use, if you want to go 10 minutes in the future you step into it and wait 10 minutes, and automatically you get there. Works also with a 1 hour travel but further than that it has not been tested because of the risk of breaking space-time continuum. Also no A/C.



  • @Speakerphone Dude said:

    the emotional payoff of being able to bitch about i
     

    ... surely you mean the emotional cost of having to bitch about it? As if bitching about shit like this is fun! It's not! I just want to have electricity so I can play computer games and take showers!



  • @dhromed said:

    @Speakerphone Dude said:

    the emotional payoff of being able to bitch about i
     

    ... surely you mean the emotional cost of having to bitch about it?

     

    No.

    Look who the response was aimed at.

     


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @dhromed said:

    As if bitching about shit like this is fun! It's not!
    We talked about this sort of thing in another thread. Some people clearly do like to bitch about things. I'm not sure why, though.



  • It beats working.



  • @PedanticCurmudgeon said:

    @dhromed said:
    As if bitching about shit like this is fun! It's not!
    We talked about this sort of thing in another thread. Some people clearly do like to bitch about things. I'm not sure why, though.
     

    I must specify.

     

    Bitching at an employee of a utility company over something or other pertaining to their service or payment is shitty and draining.

     

    Bitching about everything else is okay. Proceed.



  • @dhromed said:

    Bitching at an employee of a utility company over something or other pertaining to their service or payment is shitty and draining.

    What if they want to bill you for power they never supplied and you never used?
    @CBS said:

    WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA) Some of you will see an extra charge in your next electric bill because Pepco and BGE lost money when they couldn't charge customers to deliver power during the storm outage.



  • Ah, so they CAN just make up a number to charge you. That's pretty convenient.



  • @boomzilla said:

    What if they want to bill you for power they never supplied and you never used?
    @CBS said:
    WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA) Some of you will see an extra charge in your next electric bill because Pepco and BGE lost money when they couldn't charge customers to deliver power during the storm outage.
     

    That is unfathomably ridiculous.

    Ok, it would still be shitty and draining, but it would be for a good cause!



  • @Xyro said:

    Ah, so they CAN just make up a number to charge you. That's pretty convenient.
     

    It's like diverting half-cents from a large number of bank accounts, except it's state-approved, apparently.


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