As of Sept. 8, Discover will be ending its “Secure Online Account Numbers” service, according to an e-mail sent out to customers last night. This feature was helpful for customers who feared identity theft and online fraud. The service allowed customers to generate unique credit card numbers that could be used specifically for online retailers or transactions.
Identity theft and online fraud are major issues with online banking, so it is sad to see a service as useful as this go. It seems that as the Internet grows so does fraud. According to the Federal Trade Commission, 21% оf the complaints received іn 2009 were аbоut a form of identity theft. Data from 2009 showed that identity theft statistics found thаt bank and loan fraud accounted for 14% of all identity related theft for that year. Credit card fraud landed on the charts at 17%.
Discover could not be reached for comment, but perhaps they cut the program because it wasn’t proving profitable. The banks are at each other’s necks now to acquire the most capital, after the CARD Act of 2009 put dents in revenue streams. “Secure Online Account Numbers” may be one of the credit cards perks that needed to be downsized.
Consumers across the nation are upset about the service change.
“It’s sad to see a beneficial service like that go to waste. I don’t trust my banking information over the Internet, so I used the service quite frequently when I made online purchases from unknown vendors,” said Discover card user Anita Rodriquez, of Bronx, NY.
According to the e-mail:
“We [Discover] appreciate your continued loyalty to Discover and are committed to protecting your personal information so you can use your card with confidence and peace of mind. In fact, over the years Discover, as well as the credit card industry, have added security measures to protect customers from fraudulent use of their cards both online and offline.
In light of these increased security measures we will be discontinuing the Secure Online Account Numbers program effective September 8, 2011. We realize that you may have Secure Online Account Numbers stored in online shopping carts, so we have taken the necessary actions to keep those numbers valid and active until the expiration date shown on your Discover card for the account you used to create the Secure Online Account Number.”
Discover went on to thank its customers for their loyalty and went on to ensure its customers that other fraud prevention tactics are in place. All Discover cards are equipped with a $0 Fraud Liability so you are never responsible for any unauthorized purchases.