First... HAPPY APRIL FOOLS DAY. I probably chose poor timing with this post because I assure you, this post is 100% not a joke :)
Recently I wrote about getting a weird WWE charge on my credit card (which, actually, now that I've written that post, other people have contacted me with that SAME WEIRD CHARGE on their credit card so I'm glad I'm not alone?!) and then a few weeks ago, Mike got a fraudulent charge and had to cancel his card, too!
Since we so recently experienced this and I think the hours/days after your card are stolen or lost are SO confusing and scary (isn't it such a terrible feeling? like, you're so vulnerable and don't know what's happening? ugh I just hate it so much) so I wanted to create a little list of things you should do to make sure this doesn't turn into a big messy situation.
Because forgetting to change your autopay accounts on your now-cancelled card can cause you to get late fees... and we don't want that.
#1. As soon as you realize there's been an unauthorized charge on your card, call your bank. They'll probably ask you to verify the last thing you purchased with the card, ask whether it's still in your posession, etc. Then they'll probably tell you that they'll send a new card in the mail (and will give you a time frame that it'll arrive in).
#2. Cut up your old card.
#3. Take a look at your online statement for the (now cut up) card and see if there are any recurring/autopay charges attached to that card. Gym membership, utilities, phone bill, etc. Write the name of the charge down + the date that the charge usually comes. For example, maybe your gym membership is autopaid on the 15th, your cable bill on the 5th, and your phone bill on the 17th.
So if today is the 1st and your credit card company said it'll take 5-7 business days to receive your new card, you can safely assume that your new card will NOT be here by the 5th (in time to pay the cable bill), so you're going to need to take care of that in a different way. Go update your cable bill autopayment options to use another credit/debit card this month! (or call your cable company and tell them what happened, and they might be willing to push your due date back a bit)
If you're comfortable with it, you can wait on updating the payment info on the other two autopay charges, since you will probably receive the card before those are charged (on the 15th and 17th). Or you can update them to another card just so you don't forget.
#4. When you do receive the new card, do all the activation stuff for it and then go into your remaining autopay bills and update the payment information for those with your new card info.