American Express Complaint - American Express Fraud Protection
American Express professes to offer a Fraud Protection guarantee, but this guarantee appears to be meaningless. I recently had three fraudulent charges against my American Express card over a period of 4-5 weeks. As a result I had my card suspended and I did not accept the offer from American Express to issue a new card. In each case I called the phone number provided by American Express for reporting fraudulent charges and I gave their customer service people the information they requested. I was told in each case that they could not put me directly in touch with someone from their fraud prevention department because they were unavailable. I was also told each time that a case would be opened to resolve the issue, and that it would take 6-8 weeks to be completed. After receiving no response for some time, I called again and this time I was able to speak with someone from the fraud prevention group. I was told at this time that there was no pending case related to my charge card (apparently the customer service people didn't take the time to follow through on my previous calls).
However, they assured me that a case would be opened, and again told me that it would take 6-8 weeks to resolve. Afterwards I researched these fraudulent charges on the internet and was surprised to learn that several other American Express card holders had also incurred fraudulent charges from these same companies, that they had reported these fraudulent charges to American Express, that the companies had been identified as bogus (apparently set up by cyber-mules for the express purpose of collecting fraudulent charges), and that in some cases the charges had already been reversed by American Express. If the fraud protection group was already aware of these bogus companies at the time of my phone calls, why wasn't I informed of this? Why would it take an additional 6-8 weeks to investigate a report of fraud against companies that were already under investigation?
Why was American Express still accepting charges from these companies long after they had been identified as bogus companies? The internet research disclosed that there are several of these bogus companies in California, with overlapping ownerships, all listed as owned by people with Russian names. I can only conclude that the American Express fraud protection and detection is not particularly effective, that American Express is not very forthcoming with its customers, and that the American Express customer service group exists primarily to deflect customer complaints, not to resolve problems.