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ThoughtsOnline

Friday, December 23, 2005


In my day job, I use my corporate Amex to pay for the Google Adwords that we've been running. Every few days or so for well over a year, Google charges somewhere in the ballpark of $1,000 to my card.

Untill three days ago, when it seems that Amex decided to stop okaying these charges as part of what they described as a "random and routine security check" to ensure that the card was still in my possession.

But they didn't notify me of this, nor did they stop approving charges I was making elsewhere (such as the thousands of dollars in restaurant gift cards I bought for my staff, nor did they reject the card when I used it yesterday at lunch.

So why would Amex decide to stop approving charges that were so consistent with other charges that had been appearing on my card for over a year, yet let go charges that very well could have been incurred by someone who had stolen my card?

Why not notify me, their client, the person who pays them their membership fees and uses their card - rather than a VISA I could just as easily use - that brings them in thousands and thousands of dollars a year in service fees (and from just my card alone; add the fees from the others in my company who use their corporate Amex card and we're talking significant money).

Ridiculous customer service... and when I called, first to figure out what was going on, then to complain, their customer service rep (who sure sounded like she was either in, or from, a country that sounds like India and the supervisor who I insisted on being transferred to were both totally useless.

As for Google's part in all this, they apparently had tried to put the same charge through on three consecutive days, but never notified me (or anyone else on the account) to let us know of the problem. No emails, no phone calls. It took actually going to the site, intending to monitor activity over the past couple of days, to notice that something was amiss.

Great service all around...