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Security Harassment
Posted by WESLUTHER on 10/06/2007
I wanted an american express gold card because in my mind it was one of the best cards to have and their customer service was terrific. I have found through my own experience that this is not so. Let me tell you what they have done to me in the last 3 months. I booked a cruise for myself and my parents {different rooms} through AMEX travel on my gold rewards card and added 2 nights in 2 hotels in florida and 2 travel insurance policies as well as 4 roundtrip airline tickets. The hotels and insurance and airfare and one of the cruise staterooms went through and one was declined. I called them and they wanted to know why 2 rooms, and that I had been putting large amounts on the card. I explained what I was doing and while I was on the phone I paid for all of the charges and had them rebook the other stateroom. When I flew to florida and checked in to the hotel I was told that it had not been paid for so I again used my card and paid for the rooms. While I was on the cruise AMEX shut down my card for security reasons and I had to deal with all that mess through the cruise line proving to them who I was etc. So my card was released for use. When I returned from the cruise and got home I find a letter telling me that I have to contact them immediately due to security concerns it was dated 9/6 {i was on the cruise} so I contacted them by phone and went through all the security questions I was told that I should have contacted them earlier. I was told that I had to prove to them that I am me. They needed a copy of my drivers license, my social security card, a bill in my name at my address, {i guess their bill doesn't count} and that I needed to send in a check stub and have my signature notarized and fax it to them. I did all this.

When I confirmed that they had the fax I was told that it would take 3 days to clear this up. That was on 9/28. When I received my bill I disputed the dual charge from the hotel and AMEX verified that it had been previously paid and promptly credited it back to my account 3 times. I contacted them and told them that I only needed it credited back once. Then I paid my bill online and they tried to take it out of the wrong account, and charged me an nsf fee. I again contacted them and they agreed that they had messed up and refunded the nsf fee. The payment then went through on the correct account. Then yesterday 10/5 I went to use the card and was once again embarrasssed by it being declined. I called them and was told that the fax containing the notarized signature, drivers license, truck payment bill, high school diploma, draft card,and check stub was not good enough to prove who I am because pay chex did not have my employers address on the check stub. They said they needed a stub with the address on it, a phone number for the notory and a phone number for my employer {they already had this} so I hunted around and found an old stub with the address on it and faxed them the info they asked for. Then this morning they call me on my cell phone and tell me that the stub is too old they had confirmed that I gave them the correct phone number for my employer, but the bank is closed on Saturdays {no kidding} so they could not verify that the notary was real I guess. So now they want a 3 way conference call with my employer and I'm sure he's going to love that.

Since I have had this card I have spent about 14,000.00 On it and paid it in full and on time every month and now the former gestapo agents that they have running their security department are trying very hard to make me miserable, they have cost me time from work, embarrasssed me and generally treated me like scum. And I can not get contact info for a supervisor who might be able to resolve this due to "security concerns" the commercial that they run on TV is a lie, a joke, and false advertisement. They do not practice customer service they practice customer harassment

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Posted by Anonymous on 2007-10-08:
Why are you jumping through so many hoops to have this credit card? Pay any undisputed balance then close the account. If there is any further disputed amounts, go to arbitration or small claims. I have never had a credit card that I had to go to this extent to prove my identity to. The credit card company does not need a phone number for the notary. The notary seal has the notary's certification number on it that can be verified with the secretary of state in which the certification was issued. If they are disputing whether or not the notarized copy was legitimate they can then ask for a copy of the line item entry that was made in the notary's journal. No notary will give this information over the phone, to anyone!

Something does not sound right about this story.
Posted by WESLUTHER on 2007-10-08:
In reading through the other reviews and complaints, it looks like I'm not the only one being treated like this. I thought it was suspicious too, but it really is AMEX security that I am talking to, but I can barely understand half of what they are saying. I have been in contact with customer service who sends me to account services who then sends me back to security. I have already paid the undisputed balance. I have sent in a complaint to the better business bureau and I have requested a supervisor to talk to at least 6 times.I guess when this first started I thought they were trying to protect both thier and my interests but now I have come to believe that they hire obsessive, compulsive, sadistic nut cases for thier security department. They called me again today to inform me that they are still trying to verify my identity but that the bank where the notary is is not open today. What bank is open on Columbus day? I told them not to call me again and that I will no longer talk to anyone other than a supervisor. I could not understand what triggered all this, since I booked all this through them so when I was double charged it was very obvious, even to them. The only thing I still owe them is a small balance that was on flex pay,{200.00} but they will not allow me to pay it off since "there is no balance due at this time" so until this billing cycle closes I can not pay it off or close the account, thankfully that is the 11th of this month. This is the most idiotic way of doing business I have ever seen. The funny part is that customer sevice keeps sending me emails about this issue and telling me that they are sorry and that they have forwarded this to a supervisor and they value me as a customer and look forward to serving my needs for many years.
Posted by WESLUTHER on 2007-10-13:
I am putting this on as an update to my situation. Security confirmed that the notary did notarize my signature and that I do work for my employer. Now in addition to to my social security card, my pay stubs, my high school diploma, my draft card, my notarized signature, my banking information, my truck billing and having gone through their interrogations several times they want my w2s. I told them that I had sent them every thing I was going to, unless they want to tell me exactly what the problem is. Today when I try to sign into my account it shows that my card has been canceled and that there is a credit on the account. I know that there has to be more to this then they are telling me, but I thought that if there is a problem with an account that the cardholder has a right to know what it is that they are looking for. Amex apparently writes their own rules as they go along.
Posted by DigitalCommando on 2007-10-13:
Whenever you anticipate a large purchase far above your normal spending habits, you should contact them and make them aware of it PRIOR to the purchase, especially if you are planning to use the card outside the city you live in. While their actions were an inconvenience to you, the flip side is a lack of security which may have allowed an unauthorized user to go on that same trip. Your unusual sudden increase in spending is a standard "red flag" and it appears to me American Express security department did an excellent job doing what they are supposed to do.
Posted by WESLUTHER on 2007-10-13:
What they started questioning is the charges from the cruise ship for the cruise that I booked through them. The problem now is that I can not prove that I am me. It is anything but doing an excellent job. Even customer service has apoligized for their actions.
Posted by DigitalCommando on 2007-10-13:
If you can't prove that you are you, are you really you? (That's what AMEX is probably thinking) If Amex is asking for W-2's, their probably more concerned with your ability to pay, more than with who you are, considering the mountain of documents you have already given them. As for the security dept. doing a good job, I was referring to their initial reaction and actions, not the bs run-around your getting now. Wes luther, if we are to continue this conversation, I will need 6 picture ID's showing that you are "Wes luther".....
Posted by WESLUTHER on 2007-10-13:
Have you ever heard of anyone questioning a notary? I have paid these people 8000.00 in the past 3 months, and strangly enough all these payments came through my bank accounts so I guess the banks believe I am me. At least someone does.
Posted by El Jefe on 2007-10-16:
Ditto for me except it happened 20 years ago.The "security" department still treats me with complete disdain.I have an 800+ FICO score,no debts,own my house outright,have hundreds of thousands in bank but the problem between the two of us is my fault.Bull!The last time the world saw anything like this we were at war against them.
Posted by WESLUTHER on 2007-10-21:
UPDATE: Yesterday I recieved 4 letters from AMEX 3 from costomer service telling me that the have investigated my disputes and they have been decided in my favor and what a valued customer I am and they look forward to serving all my future needs. One letter from credit operations/security telling me that my acount has been cancelled for the following reasons "You did not provide the banking information, financial statements, income tax return and/or identification documents requested." They never asked for financial statements or income tax returns and I sent them every identification document they asked for except my w2. They then go on to tell me that "our cancellation of your account under these circumstances may result in negative reporting of this account to the consumer reporting agencies" I have sent a letter to a consumer relations officer that according to customer service has the authority to over ride these idiots in security outlineing all that they have put me through, so we'll see it it does any good. I'll post again if there are any updates.
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-10-21:
Ask for your annual fee to be refunded and cut up the card and move on already!! Geez! If you continue to try and keep this card after all they have supposedly put you through, then you deserve what you get.
Posted by WESLUTHER on 2007-10-22:
I'm not trying to keep the card just the rewards points I had earned and they still owe me 196.24 but I'm not going to allow them to report anything negative to the consumer reporting agencies without a fight.
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Rewards Not Fulfilled
Posted by Yzhuang5 on 03/17/2014
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- I tried Amex starwood before and canceled it later on. But family felt the last hotel we stayed at was not so bad (even though they did place us in a room next to the elevator) so I applied for it again in 2013. Due to lack of experience, we did not click on the offer terms (who would?). I got approved quickly, the company did not tell us upfront that we would not qualify for the 30K points as had been advertised. In the next few months, we called at least 3 times to learn why we hadn't received the points. We were told to be patient each time, that you had not spent 5K yet, that it needs a few weeks to process.. Until the last time there were no more excuse they told us we did not qualify as we had had the product in the past 12 months. We debate a few points: the dates they used to calculate the 12 months (even the way they did it it was only 4 days short of 12 months). 2nd why wouldn't' tell us the truth earlier. Amex just replied it was representative mistake and they had given the feedbacks to the reps. But who cares about that? After many attempts we realized it's a hard to Win battle. It's amazing how little they care about customer complaint. Just a few weeks back we were shopping at a furniture store and at the time we tried to pay they found out the price of the furniture was much lower than marked. You know what the manager did? They just gave us the lower price as it was the company mistake! I was thrilled by their customer service. Compared to them Amex is a much larger and financially stronger company and it's a shame how they deal with customers. Maybe that's exactly how they get there.
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American Express Spy On People By Going To The Cbi
Posted by Fermin13 on 01/17/2014
FT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA -- Doesnt matter how long you have been with American Express doesn't matter how much membership fee you have paid to them at present we paid $180.00 a year, they without permission goes to the credit bureau report and without checking with you they make their own decision in lowering your credit limit, they have the nerve of stating because you "have too much credit" what a nerve, if you're in business you have too much credit..is useless talking to them, they just don't care about anybody, they think they are number #..Capital one is a better card with no membership, high credit limit, some times some memberships..nice customer service, helpful, american express you sucks..You have no right on going to your card memeber [bureau report without permission especially for no reason, my account is not past due, has never being past due..Maybe someone in your office is stealing info..after all the credit bureau contains a lot of info..
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American Express Gift Cards for Online Sales
Posted by Delvecch1 on 01/16/2014
ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND -- My company decided to give Amex gift cards to employees as a year-end thank you. I tried to use my card at a major retailer's website. The card was denied. I called the retailer and told her I was having issues and she said that she also could not verify the card. She asked if this was a gift card or actual credit card and I told her a gift card. She tried to process payment both ways - both failed. I called Amex's 800 on the back of the card and after entering the gift card number a recording told me I had $200 available. The next day I tried the online sale again and it failed again. I called Amex again and after hitting a bunch of numbers on the phone I was finally transferred to a human. The guy said I had to register the card first before using it for online retailers. Neither the Amex website or information that comes with the card says this. He also told me that a sale was pending on the card (the failed sale). I told the representative that the sale never was processed by the retailer. He told me to call the retailer and tell them the card was working and that Amex has approved the amount. I explained that I didn't have an order number to reference because there was no sale. He said in 8-10 business days the amount that has been reserved for the failed sale would be re-credited back to the card. I asked for a supervisor because I felt this was ludicrous since there was no sale and the supervisor said "I apologize for any inconvenience but there's nothing we can do; you'll have to wait for the 8-10 business days even though there was no sale because we have reserved the funds for that sale...so I repeated, you're holding funds for a sale that never took place? And he "Joy" his name was Joy, said yes that's our policy...epic fail on American Express' part. They are a horrid company with laughable customer service.

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Posted by Greg on 2014-01-17:
I use Gift Cards online because there is only a certain amount I have on them (usually $200). If someone steals my number I can only lose whatever balance is left. To use it online I have to register the card and getting a credit back does take several days. This is common among gift cards. I know it is a pain, but be patient. I do not use the AMEX gift cards because I cannot register them online, I have to AMEX and talk to someone. All the other debit cards I buy are registered online.
Posted by Cwazychicken on 2014-01-18:
I had this problem with a debit card..not the same but if a sale fails, the gift cards bank an hold funds on it.....until it clears.
Posted by Paul on 2014-01-18:
I agree that the problem needs to be fixed on the retailer's end, or let to expire. AMEX shouldn't be able to cancel a transaction (they don't know it will never be completed). The root cause of the problem was in not knowing how the card was to be used/authorized, which it would be nice for them to include with the card.
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Wanted to Give Points to Non Profits of My Choice as I Have Done in the Past, Now You Can Only Give to Five Charities.
Posted by Constance.b.smith45 on 12/31/2013
It says on the site you can give to non-profits of your choice. As I see it you have five choices which is far from the multiple nonprofits of the past. When I chatted with Amex she suggested I give gift cars. Of course they are Amex cards which are 2x the amt. What has happened? Are only the big non profits the ones to gain in rewards charity giving? Very disappointing!
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AMEX Charges Interest No Matter What
Posted by Rvd125 on 10/01/2013
FISHERS, INDIANA -- What gives? I was doing great without any interest being charged to the card as I pay the entire balance showing on the billing statement before the due date. I recently received a statement showing an interest charge. When I phoned the customer service representative was immediately on the defensive and suggested I don't take it that way even though I gave her no indication that I would. I simply asked her for a reason why I was being charged an interest when I never received one before.

She stated I am always being charged an interest but it will not apply if I pay the balance in full by the due date. I agreed with her and asked again why I'm now being charged interest. She repeated her statement about it not being her opinion and that interest is charged all of the time. When I read the definition of interest posted on the back of the billing statement and specifically the part where I would not be charged interest if paid in full by the due date she again went of the defensive and said I would be charged interest no mater what.

Knowing I wasn't going to get anywhere with her I simply thanked her for her time and said that due to her customer care I would be cancelling the card after I speak with Costco. Keep moving forward.
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Posted by BigAl on 2013-10-01:
It depends upon how you use your card. When you purchase at a retailer designating that you are using credit it will have an interest waiver if you pay in full. If you designate it as debit you will be charged interest starting at the purchase date. Retailers pay a fee to accept credit cards. The fee is less if debit is used rather than credit. You or a person processing your sale could have used the wrong designation. This may have been what happened to you.
Posted by trmn8r on 2013-10-01:
There is evidence of lack of communication if this is the sum total of the conversation. If you paid the full balance in the previous billing cycle to the one in question by the due date, there must be an expanation as to why you were actually billed interest.

AMEX is a very successful company, and not through charging people for things they don't owe. I am surprised the CSR didn't address the specific question as to why you were billed interest in the cycle in question.

The only thing I can think of is a cash advance or something... If this happened to me I would call back and ask someone else.
Posted by Weedwhacked on 2013-10-02:
They don't want customers that don't make them any money.
Posted by bcd on 2013-10-03:
The interest charge is probably due to a cash advance.


Credit card companies prefer customers don't pay their full balance monthly but still welcome their business because they earn money from the merchants.
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Giving a Gift and Taking It Away
Posted by Ergoodman on 08/17/2013
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA -- I was given a free pass to the American Express Centurion Lounge in Las Vegas. The man at the counter did not run my card and I was told I needed to pay $50. He also said I needed to pay $50 for him to answer a simple question.

I have been given an offer for my brother to attend the lounge for free because of the way I was treated. I am going to cancel my card and never attend that stupid lounge. Some employees at American Express treat their customers differently depending on a variety of factors I guess. I will not continue to give business to a company that discriminates.
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Worst Bank Ever
Posted by Dominictrs on 07/31/2013
Worst service, website. Representatives don't know anything about personal approach.

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Closed My High Yield Savings Acct. Without Telling Me or Sending Me My Money Back.
Posted by Dbarrett13 on 07/30/2013
SALT LAKE, UTAH -- I opened a high yield savings account in March. I got a statement that they received my initial deposit. I didn't get any more statements so I decided to call and check on my balance. I was surprised my account had been closed. They said they thought it had been compromised. I asked why I wasn't notified, they tried to make excuses.

I asked for my balance and for them to send me my money back. They said it would take several days to figure it out. After waiting a week they called me back and left a message. I returned the call and left a message, After waiting all day, I called again. I was put on hold for a long time while they looked for my money. I told them to send the money overnight delivery. Finally think the check is in the mail. Very scary experience.
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American Express Has Hit a New Low in Customer Service Re Redeeming Points
Posted by Shallwedance on 07/26/2013
USA, HAWAII -- I called American Express today to use my points for a flight I just booked for my husband and they told me I could not redeem any points as I have never been signed up.

I had been using my card but only getting points on my husband's card and asked why they would not debit my card points and they said that it was because my husband never asked to have my card in the rewards program and only HE could authorize that!!!

What a stupid thing - someone is actually going to refuse their spouse the benefit of having something given back to them as a bonus rewards program>> Really?

So for the past 10 years that we have had this card and NOTHING has been accumulating points and I use the card every month for my business and nothing was going towards the point system!!!! Someone at some point should have asked me or my husband to sign up for the benefits.

I don't understand what kind of customer service this is but I can tell you that it is an awful sneaky and low way of doing business.
I have American Express at my store and unless this is corrected I will be pulling it out of my store also.
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Posted by trmn8r on 2013-07-26:
I don't agree with transferring responsibility to AMEX for something I believe you should have done.

When I have a rewards program card, I check those rewards every few months. You checked after 10 years. I can see being upset you didn't get credit for something you were not enrolled in, but it isn't AMEX's fault.

I also don't agree that an AMEX csr should be responsible for suggesting that someone enroll in a rewards program. I've never had that happen as the account holder - only through mailings advertising the program do I find out about them.

I'm sorry, but I believe this is the customer's responsibility 100%.
Posted by Weedwhacked on 2013-07-26:
I agree, the customer is at fault.
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