Published on October 24th, 2011
Estimated Reading Time is 3 mins
Hi all, rather than releasing snippets of info on Twitter I thought I'd give a quick run down.
We were under the impression we had a 2 bedroom suite which turned out not to be the case but not the reason for this complaint.
It was me that had made the booking and so when we checked in on the Tuesday night, they asked for payment which was fine. However, I didn't anticipate them asking for a photocopy of my driver's license or my bank card. I've been to many conferences and hotels and have never had copies of cards taken before.
This was queried and we were told it was "standard procedure". When it transpired that our room wasn't a 2 bedroom suite but in fact another room that needed separate payment, the Union Hotel again took another copy of my driver's license and bank card.
Having worked in with fraud depts in the banking industry before, the alarm bells were ringing. I generally don't do credit cards so the first thing I did when I got to our room was move my money from my account - just to be safe. I had nothing else to go on at this point - only gut instinct.
I only made Dev Day before having to get back to a client project on Thursday but what I awoke to was a text from Tom about the guys being locked out as the room hadn't been paid for by me and that Andy had to pay using his card.
A quick online statement check showed that the funds for 1 room had been taken from my account (even although they took 2 copies from me).
Tom alerted me this morning that Andy had been defrauded on his card and that I should check with the bank. I did that and they told me the hotel had attempted to take another 2 transactions from my account for the same amount as before.
It doesn't look like they tried to use my card for Amazon as they did with Andy but I would assume that's because I had cleared the account of any funds and the transaction would have failed anyway.
I cancelled my card in any case - but if any of you bump into a Steven Grant, in the US, with a UK driver's license, with an accent a little stranger than a mine - then you're looking at a fraud ;-)
I haven't spoken to any of the guys in person so if I'm inaccurate in anything then chime in guys.