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Thread: Some Non-trivial Things That Annoy Me.

  1. #3541
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    Today we got a missed call from our Credit Card security area. Eventually got through and found that it concerned a suspicious charge in Euros - which was a fraudulent attempt. However on checking my account while I was talking to them I saw were three charges that were "pending" that were also fraudulent - the last two for relatively large amounts. The card has been cancelled and and new cards are on the way for my wife and I. I have lodged a "dispute" over the three payments. There was something a bit odd about my account late last night when I checked but no charges had appeared then that I didn't recognise. I obviously should have rung them up but it seemed ok at the time.

    I haven't lost the card or used it recently anywhere where "skimming" was likely to have occurred. I assume, and actually hope, that access was obtained during one of those mass "loss of client details" that have occurred at companies around the world recently. I do run scans of my home PC on a regular basis and did a couple yesterday with no suspicious activity uncovered, Unfortunately, it is pretty hard with our interests and love of travelling not to use credit cards and this is the first problem we have had since about 2007.

  2. #3542
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    Sorry to hear that, ozduck. Hope it gets resolved.

    My sister works for the US Federal Government, and had to undergo a detailed background security check for a job. That entailed collecting details of not only her, but her family including me. then the security company that did the BG check, was itself hacked by unknown parties in mainland China. The gov't said they probably sold the data as job lots to crooks. Then provided a new security system . But the damage was already done.

    She's had her credit looted 5 times since then, and my Mom had credit card info stolen twice from countries she hasn't been to.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  3. #3543
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Sorry to hear that, ozduck. Hope it gets resolved.

    My sister works for the US Federal Government, and had to undergo a detailed background security check for a job. That entailed collecting details of not only her, but her family including me. then the security company that did the BG check, was itself hacked by unknown parties in mainland China. The gov't said they probably sold the data as job lots to crooks. Then provided a new security system . But the damage was already done.

    She's had her credit looted 5 times since then, and my Mom had credit card info stolen twice from countries she hasn't been to.
    Thanks noclevername. I hope I am not as unlucky as your family!

  4. #3544
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    I once had someone pay for $100 in airline tickets on my card in person in India. My credit union was like, "Yeah, pretty sure that wasn't you" and gave me my money without a fight.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  5. #3545
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozduck View Post
    Thanks noclevername. I hope I am not as unlucky as your family!

    Same.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  6. #3546
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    I once had someone pay for $100 in airline tickets on my card in person in India. My credit union was like, "Yeah, pretty sure that wasn't you" and gave me my money without a fight.
    One of the charges was as simple as that and is no problems. However, the two big charges were for some strange thing like "Reward Redemption" which seem to be something like a weeks stay at a top end spa, luxury treatment vouchers or the like. I have spoken to the bank this morning and they are still showing as "pending" charges and are being monitored. The process of settling the "dispute" about these payments will not start until they are billed - if not billed then all is ok. They have already run me through the standard questions about "Did you authorise anyone else to use your card?" and so on.

    To make it even better we are going overseas in 4 days - luckily we don't use this card o/s because of excess fees but it still is a cause for concern. I am now changing my passwords on other accounts just in case.

    And to make it even "betterrer" I had to go to the dentist this morning for a chipped tooth plus a "general" pain in my upper teeth which I think is the start of root canal failure in one of them. The chip was fixed ok and that pain is subsiding but he was unable to isolate a tooth for the "general'" pain. So he prescribed some antibiotics (a weeks worth) to take if it flares up again o/s - apparently they can hold it in check for up to a month. I have had a number of root canal problems previuosly and finding the "right" tooth to treat can be a real pain.

  7. #3547
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozduck View Post
    ...The process of settling the "dispute" about these payments will not start until they are billed...
    If I recall correctly, one of our members (Tog, perhaps?) worked at a hotel desk at night, and was somehow involved in processing credit card transactions.

    I’m sure I have the details incorrect, but he/she said it wasn’t uncommon to see charges appear and disappear. He/she figured it had to do with someone probing to see if credit card numbers were valid.

    If true, regardless of whether anything is ever actually billed, you need to get a new card.



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    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  8. #3548
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    If I recall correctly, one of our members (Tog, perhaps?) worked at a hotel desk at night, and was somehow involved in processing credit card transactions.

    I’m sure I have the details incorrect, but he/she said it wasn’t uncommon to see charges appear and disappear. He/she figured it had to do with someone probing to see if credit card numbers were valid.

    If true, regardless of whether anything is ever actually billed, you need to get a new card.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Thanks Extravoice - the card in question has been cancelled and a new one is on the way.

  9. #3549
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    We'll be making a trip today to what I've come to think of as the wrong (East) side of Puget Sound. I'm dreading it. My wife wants to see her nephew, who is up from Arizona trying to move his parents down there because they aren't taking proper care of themselves.

    My wife's sisters family is so disfunctional I don't know where to start. The nephew in question (I almost called him a kid, but he's just turned 40) actually spent time in juvenile jail but has straightened himself out, has a good job, a nice fiance, and owns a home. And he's a cat lover, a plus for me. Everyone else in the family is a mess.

    My wife and her sister haven't been speaking for nearly two years, because the sister had a meltdown over being told we were having MY family for Thanksgiving. Some really nasty text messages. We've seen them a couple of times at family events but there was no communication. Her husband was forced into retirement in his late 70's a couple of years ago and now does nothing but sit in his chair and drink. Their house is falling apart -- they haven't even had hot water for a couple of years. We don't have to deal with that, of course, but it worries my wife who keeps in touch with her nephew. I know she's stressed out about even seeing him. I hope we can avoid seeing his parents without things getting worse.
    Update: The day went ok, though long and tiring. That was mostly not due to the family situation. We had a nice lunch with nephew and his fiance. I admire him for what he's doing to save his parents. The situation in their house was worse than I imagined. I knew they hadn't had hot water for several years, but didn't know about the rats that just sit there and look at you when you open a cupboard. He's now got them on the road toward what I hope will be a better life. As for their house, it sounds as if a fire would substantially increase the value of the property.

    Unrelated: We've got a sick kitty. She's had intermittent periods of respiratory congestion the last couple of years, which antibiotics didn't seem to help much. A couple of days ago she appeared to be having some balance issues. Then yesterday afternoon the sheet metal cover over the furnace came loose and made a noise which sent both cats under the bed. The other one came out, this one didn't. I took her to the vet this morning, she was wheezing and couldn't walk a straight line. No real diagnosis yet but her lab work looks ok. Probably some X-rays on Friday. I feel so bad for her.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  10. #3550
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    Hope your kitty is OK. Mine are getting old and I worry.

  11. #3551
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    Yes Treb; hope the vet finds something nice and treatable.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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  12. #3552
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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    Hope your kitty is OK. Mine are getting old and I worry.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    Yes Treb; hope the vet finds something nice and treatable.
    Ditto, ditto.
    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.
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    You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. They don’t alter their views to fit the facts. They alter the facts to fit their views.
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  13. #3553
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    Thanks folks. She was doing considerably better yesterday.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  14. #3554
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    I'm feeling pretty stressed right now. I should be excited about the Pumpkin Pitch but I'm mostly feeling guilty about going away for a couple of days. The kitty is better, I think, but not back to normal. She's actually purring in my lap right now, but nice as that is, it isn't usual for her.

    Then yesterday morning I tried to open the garage door and it wouldn't -- the spring is broken. I got a technician out and as I expected, the whole mess, other than the opener we replaced a couple of years ago, is shot. More than 40 years old. He recommended replacing everything including the door -- on a building that may be torn down after we get into the new house. We're going with just a repair, but it'll still be $500 and they can't come out until Monday so my wife will have to wiggle her car out the awkward.

    Combine that with the stress of having to get ready to move, dealing with some problems in the construction, and such; and I'm just not enjoying my special time of year very much this time around.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  15. #3555
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    Home repairs and similar troubles always get me stressed. I'd like to offer you the magic relief method, but I don't have a clue as to what it is. I do know that one thing that does help me a little is to focus on other tasks. Maybe tinkering with your machine, even in a meaningless way, will help you take your mind off of the rest.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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  16. #3556
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    I did go out and do most of the teardown for transport. Tomorrow I'll get it into the truck. I've also had a nice nap with the kitty so that helps.

    We're planning a major vacation and family reunion next year in Buffalo, WY, where my mom and her sisters grew up. And of course, I can't go to Wyoming without spending some time in Yellowstone. So I'll do some playing around with itineraries this evening, I think.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  17. #3557
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    We are currently in Spain with a misbehaving laptop, hence I haven't been on here much. But that is not what annoyed me in particular.

    In Barcelona the other day I experienced my first attempt at being pick pocketed - a seemingly popular pastime there according to the internet. Luckily she was so clumsy that even my sloth like reflexes were able to knock her hand away when she went for my wallet. This was the second crook I experienced on Barcelona public transport that day. The previous encounter was with a shifty looking guy who kept trying to get close to me as I kept moving away. Eventually a local woman who spoke English said aloud that he and his friend were after my wallet - they were dissuaded and got off the bus.

    To make it worse I survived the pick pocket attempt only to leave my camera behind on a riverside bench in another Spanish city a few days later - returning after about 5 minutes was a waste of time as it had gone. Luckily, while it was a good super compact camera it was nearly 6 years old and had suffered a hard life. I download my holiday snaps every couple of days so I only lost a few photos and my wife had taken similar ones anyway. Tiredness can easily make you careless, and we have been doing a lot of walking so far.

  18. #3558
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    My back's acting up. I lifted Irene out of her car seat yesterday, something I do all the time, and my back decided that it was once too often.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  19. #3559
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    I have two first year professors this semester. Like any first year teacher, they have no idea of "time to complete". I've turned in some very complex and interesting projects that haven't been graded due to time constraints. That is annoying because each project is linked conceptually and feedback on the first would be helpful to complete the next. I get a burst of grades and feedback, like 4 assignments on one day. The feedback tends to be "I don't like how you did this in the first assignment and four assignments later, you are still doing the same thing." Didn't you realize that waiting for weeks to grade assignments 1-4, would mean that I won't have the feedback for 4 weeks?

    The other thing that is annoying is I keep getting assignments with mismatched reward. A 20 minute video production is worth one percent of my final grade, but a three paragraph response is worth 10%. I'm waiting for the teacher to fix this. They will, because I see students cranking out work that wows the professor. Nobody's slacking. Not exactly fair, but I'll roll with it.
    Solfe

  20. #3560
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    I develop elearning courses (online digital training). That used to be all Flash based, but now Flash is no longer supported by Chrome and Firefox. Everything transferred to HTML5. For animations with transparency Flash was excellent, now I use GIF for that. Which also means: learning new programs to create the animations. And then, in their best nanny-the-world fashion, Apple is demoting GIF and pushing their own animation format for the web. That's in a 2 year timespan! I can't just keep re-developing my entire workflow from the ground up again and again and again. And then I'm not even talking about the everlasting "this doesn't work in IE, that doesn't work in Chrome" which is especially nice if your launcher program only works in one and the launched course only works in the other...

    The good news is that GIF apparently is too big to be killed by Apple. "So was Flash" I hear you say, but Flash had complex support and some safety issues that GIF hasn't. GIF is a bit limited and not too efficient, but find somebody who cares about that.
    Last edited by Nicolas; 2018-Oct-06 at 08:08 PM.

  21. #3561
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    For the umpteenth time I was outraged at the runaround I was getting from a clunky voice-activated telephone menu before I finally blundered into a connection with a real person. This was with the mail/online-order pharmacy which I had just started using to get better coverage from my insurance provider. When I finally got through to the real person, she was superlatively courteous and professional in helping me get the bugs out of the system so I would get my first set of refills of my diabetes meds on time. The one thing she could not do was to do something about that misbegotten automated menu. I thanked her for doing a great job in the office and told her politely that I could not say the same about the techies who created the menu, and that the head honcho of the company ought to know about it. She concurred with me.

  22. #3562
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    Telephone service has gotten really bad. If the automated system can’t handle your problem, you will be punished with a very long phone wait.

    I’ve had two examples this week. First, we are planning a big family vacation, so Mrs Extravoice thought it would be a good idea to call the credit card company to warn them that there will be a big, unusual charge. Over an hour later, she spoke to a human.

    The second was to Verizon tech support because our cable tv box keeps rebooting itself at ever-decreasing intervals. Three calls at different times of the day resulted in “wait times are over an hour”.

    Both companies have what I’m sure they consider “extensive” automated systems, and I suspect the wait is artificially introduced to encourage you to use it rather than talk to a human. The system falls apart when the computer can’t help, though.

    I feel sorry for the person who has to deal with customers who have been on hold so long. It tends to make people cranky.


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  23. #3563
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    Whenever I phoned my physician's office, I was invariably asked "Can I put you on hold, please?" They got back to me later on, usually. Don't know what would have happened had I refused the hold: probably the same thing! Ah, well, I thought, they must have others on the line, and they're taking them in order.

    But once, while in the waiting room for the usual long wait, I got to observe the phone gal in action. She'd ask every caller to hold, and then went back to whatever else she was doing (or not doing), and after maybe five minutes, she'd get back to the call. It must have been policy not to serve anybody immediately. Probably not to build up expectations and to assure the caller knew how truly busy they were, so they'd be humble and intimidated when they finally got through.

    The next time I was asked to hold, I remembered that, of course. Fortunately, I don't go there anymore.

  24. #3564
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Telephone service has gotten really bad. If the automated system can’t handle your problem, you will be punished with a very long phone wait.

    I’ve had two examples this week. First, we are planning a big family vacation, so Mrs Extravoice thought it would be a good idea to call the credit card company to warn them that there will be a big, unusual charge. Over an hour later, she spoke to a human.

    The second was to Verizon tech support because our cable tv box keeps rebooting itself at ever-decreasing intervals. Three calls at different times of the day resulted in “wait times are over an hour”.

    Both companies have what I’m sure they consider “extensive” automated systems, and I suspect the wait is artificially introduced to encourage you to use it rather than talk to a human. The system falls apart when the computer can’t help, though.

    I feel sorry for the person who has to deal with customers who have been on hold so long. It tends to make people cranky.
    I have found that - sometimes - using the online chat service is a better option, even if that process is largely scripted (and assuming the problem is not an internet outage; then all bets are off).

  25. #3565
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    I have found that - sometimes - using the online chat service is a better option, even if that process is largely scripted (and assuming the problem is not an internet outage; then all bets are off).
    If your problem is one on their menu of options, sure. I can see that.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  26. #3566
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    If your problem is one on their menu of options, sure. I can see that.
    I tried an online chat recently. I didn't realize it was automated until it told me, "I'll have to transfer you to a live representative."
    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.
    Isaac Asimov

    You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. They don’t alter their views to fit the facts. They alter the facts to fit their views.
    Doctor Who

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  27. #3567
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    I tried an online chat recently. I didn't realize it was automated until it told me, "I'll have to transfer you to a live representative."
    The fact that it kept calling you Master Luke and complaining about Artoo should have been a clue.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  28. #3568
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    I tried an online chat recently. I didn't realize it was automated until it told me, "I'll have to transfer you to a live representative."
    It was a zombie. Reanimated, not automated.
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

  29. #3569
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    I have found that - sometimes - using the online chat service is a better option, even if that process is largely scripted (and assuming the problem is not an internet outage; then all bets are off).
    The first call to Verizon started as an online chat. The agent said to call the phone number because they (it) couldn’t help. The phone call started with an automated menu system that got to the point where it asked if it was okay to reset everything and disconnect my call in the process. When I said “no” I was placed on infinite hold.

    Oddly enough, there is a Verizon page that walks you through my problem and automatically sends a new box if you convince it. I found it via Google, not starting at their main page.

    That said, they should know that my box kept rebooting and automatically replaced it. They monitor my viewing, they should monitor the health of their equipment.


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  30. #3570
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    When I worked in a call center for consumer products, there was always the inclination to script the agents so they could only say a limited number of responses.

    I fought that off by calling a competitor and asking for help changing batteries in a camera. I could poison the conversation so that they were saying "yes, yes, go ahead" while I completely disassembled the camera. If I felt that there needed ice the cake, I would describe the flash capacitor and tell them I was removing it with a screwdriver. The engineering team that proposed the idea didn't think it was so great after on of those demos.

    Happened about once a year towards the end of my time there. Within two years of my leaving, they found another way to eliminate people. Online chat, but without the bots. At least they sort of care.
    Solfe

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