Thursday, January 04, 2007

Should cats be issued credit cards?

In order to protect her privacy, my daughter used to use the dog's name to register on websites fond of data mining personal information (smart kid). Shortly thereafter, our dog (Oliver) started receiving a lot of junk mail. Included were pre-approved offers for credit-cards.

All of this correspondence went directly into a shredder and we had a good laugh about it. I had to "coach" my daughter not to use our "actual address" and the problem stopped.

Now Reuters is reporting that a woman in Australia used her cat's name to apply for a secondary credit-card, and was able to get a new account for the feline. The stated reason she did this was to prove that it's too easy to commit credit-card fraud.

Reuters quoted the woman (Katherine) as saying:
You don't need to hack into the internet when you can just steal someone's credit card number and create a card for yourself."

In fact, had Messiah been a fraudster - and not a feline - Katherine wouldn't even have known the card existed.

I wasn't notified that a second card had been issued. Messiah could have put a different address and the card would have been sent there and I wouldn't have known. If it's that easy for a cat to get credit, imagine what a dog could get.
Reuters story (courtesy of IBN), here.

There was another story, I blogged about, where journalists tested how much security there is when a credit card is issued:

Ever Wonder How Well the Credit Card Companies Protect Your Personal Information?

But my favorite story about credit being issued "too easily" (along with pictures) comes from Rob at, which can be seen - here.

Credit card fraud is a serious problem, which causes a lot of "pain and suffering" to anyone unfortunate enough to be impersonated.

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