I get a small pension from the Teamsters Union and they use a third party to pay out the monthly checks. I received a letter from them saying that the third party had suffered a security breech and my name, address, phone number and social security number were in the data storage that had been breached. That happened in May; I received the letter at the beginning of August.
At the end of August someone somehow got my cell phone number and used it to get an account with T-Mobile. That’s right, they de-ported my phone number from U.S. Cellular and switched it to T-Mobile. So for several days I had no phone. Nor did I receive any notification of that. I discovered that I had no phone service—no text, no phone, no WiFi or internet, no nada. So I went to U.S. Cellular to find out why. At first the guy looked at his computer and told me they had no record of my number. A little more cyber digging and they discovered the truth. They put somebody in their corp. office on the problem. They had trouble because, technically, the number then belonged to T-Mobile.
But wait! Things get better. On the way back I wanted to get some cash. ATM says my card is invalid. So I went inside the branch office. The bank had locked up my account and frozen my card, and one of the officers had been trying to get in touch with me.
I went to the main branch and the lady there, Barb, was so glad that I came in. She was really concerned that she hadn’t been able to get in touch with me about my checking account. Someone got hold of my debit card account number (the card itself never left my possession) and in a period of less than 48 hours many people rang up over $6000 worth of charges on my account, all in the Los Angeles area.
Between 4:30 pm. on August 29 and 10:30 pm. on August 31, they made 157 transactions, most of them in the amount of $28.95.
So now I have a new account, a new phone number, a new debit card, and a new respect for the skills of the evil bastards that did this too me, may their hacking fingers rot to the bone.
My brother finally arrived, so he’ll be able to help with the garage sale this weekend. Between sales and give-aways, I hope to get rid of a lot of sh stuff.
On the reading front, I decided to give Dean Koontz a rest and to re-read The Mallorean by David Eddings. Eddings has an interesting style and his characters are really unique, as is the magic in that world.
The Mallorean is a five-book fantasy series. It is actually preceded by the five-book series, The Belgariad. I’d have preferred to read The Belgariad first, but the library here doesn’t have it. I could wait and have them order it, but I was ready for a new book and didn’t want to wait.
There is a concept of magic called “the will and the word.” I’ve borrowed that concept with a different designation, and more limits, for the Lying Swords series.
One more thing: if you go back to my previous blog post you’ll see the account of the typos problem I’m having lately. I thought I’d mention that I averaged only slightly less than one typo error per line on this post. I think I got them all.
Enough for now, and please read.