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Showing posts with the label Banks

The Festive Call!

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I was disturbed by various ‘business’ calls during work on that day. Since the Indian festive season was in full bloom such calls were not that unnatural. Getting exasperated with a plethora of telemarketing calls from banks, insurance companies and the like I ignored one from an absolutely unknown mobile number. When the same number called again, I answered thinking it could be an important call from someone not at all connected to the lot. I cursed myself as the lady voice spoke up on the other side... ‘Hello Sir, I’m calling from xyz finance company...” “Yes?” I responded. “Sir, our xyz finance company is giving you an overdraft facility...” “Why?” “Sir, half of your monthly salary will be given as overdraft to you...” “Why?” “Sir, the amount will be totally interest free...” “Why?” “So Sir, where do you work and what is your monthly salary?” And then I hung up. The audacious lady tried several times later on. However, I decided to follow the age-old dic

Credit Card Frauds: A Real Close Shave!

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Only the other day we were discussing with a few bankers about the fact that online frauds or crimes are still very low in India compared to advanced countries. We justified this with another fact that millions of Indians are still ignorant or have no online presence. And just the next day I had a close shave from a potentially serious credit card fraud. We have heard a lot about card protection in terms of safeguarding against phishing or seemingly genuine emails asking for personal information, dubious text messages, stolen or lost cards, taking care while shopping or at the ATM machine, skimming and so on. But to find out what exactly defines my experience I had to surf the net for a while finally resting on a term ‘Tele Phishing’.  During a very busy day in office I received a call from a lady who identified herself as a bank executive of the private bank with which I had multiple and most frequently used credit card accounts. As I had been used to getting such calls fr

Humor: The Virtual Travel Package!

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Emboldened by his earlier encouraging experience with the banking hawks Mr. Thames Pond decides to carry on from there. He takes a pledge to encounter any call from any credit card or banking executive with guts and intelligence. He must ensure that he refuse all unnecessary offers or entrapments. He’d no longer be vulnerable. And then, as usual, he gets a call right away…     “Hello…am I speaking to Thames Pond please?” “Who’s this please?” “This is Moneycanny Sir, from UC bank!...Mr. Pond?” “Right, this is Pond. Thames Pond!” “So nice to talk to you again! Good morning Sir!” “Good morning..Ms. err…!” “Mr. Pond…can I take just two minutes of your most precious time?” “Regarding what?” “Sir, you are one of our most privileged customers. We’ve reviewed your payment record over the years and found your credit history absolutely sound. Therefore, we’d like to offer you a rare privilege in terms of travel benefits. We are sending you a package of travel vouch

Humor: The Cost of Credit!

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“Hello! Mr. Pond?” “This is Pond. Thames Pond.” “Good Morning, Mr. Pond. This is Moneycanny. Can I have two minutes of your time please?” “Regarding what?” “Well, Sir, this is regarding a new revolutionary scheme meant only for privileged customers like you.” “I’m not really interested, but you can tell me in brief.” “Thank you for your patience Mr. Pond. You see, today’s times are very uncertain. Nobody knows what happens when. In case of unfortunate demise or fatal accidents our bank will protect you by waiving off all dues on your credit card plus an assured amount. All these for a nominal premium…” “Well, Ms…err… look! This is a very fine morning and I’m out to work with a very fresh mind. Please don’t spoil it with that talk of death and all!” “Sorry about that Mr. Pond. But this is a benefit with only minimal cost.” “What do you mean minimal? You just said I have to die to get the benefit! ” “Don’t take it that way, Sir. You have a responsibility to

Cashless Monday!

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Whenever I use my bank's ATM card on other-bank ATMs I get a message from my bank starting 'It would be a pleasure to serve you at (so many of) our ATMs...' and then confirming the transaction. So today, while heading for the vegetable market in the evening, I decided to try only my-bank ATMs as I needed to withdraw cash first. Inside one I completed the procedure and waited for the cash. But the usual shuffling sound was not there and no cash ejected. I tried again with the same result. I now wanted to check my balance, but the machine failed to do even that. Other 'knowing' customers told me 'no cash'! True to my vow I found another my-bank ATM, and the same frustration there too. The attendant was also missing. Angry now, I asked the nearby shop about the attendant and eventually found him playing carom! I demanded, 'Why don't you at least put up a notice for the customers?' Refusing to look up from his striker he replied indifferently

Aggressive Marketing: Are You Game For A Ride?

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Even if you put your cell phone number in the National Do-Not-Call Registry you can hardly escape from this aggressive tribe of telemarketers. Somebody somewhere somehow will find your number and call you up asking you for a minute to describe the offers that have to be taken immediately. You can cut the line rudely, but because most of the callers are ladies you cannot be too rude either. Banks are becoming masters of this art and they have the ability to shower you with pre-sanctioned personal loans, credit cards and the like anytime. Not that only your mobiles are vulnerable, they stalk you in every corner of your everyday existence. Sometimes you win and sometimes they make a perfect fool of you. That day my mobile rang and on answering the same sweet-talking lady voice resonated through it. ‘Sir, I am calling from ----finance company. Can I talk to you for a minute?’ ‘Well, regarding what?’ ‘We have pre-sanctioned a personal loan of -----rupees for you on the basis of your home l

Never Go For Unsolicited Credit Cards

Beware! You get calls on your mobile all the time offering you credit cards with lots of promise. The freelance agents will tell you it's a lifetime free card and many other features. But these features will be missing in the agreement form of the bank if you decide to take it. When you confront him the agent will confirm again it's free. Problems start sooner than one year. If not backing out on other promises the bank will definitely charge the annual fee after a year. Enraged, you will ask them to cancel the damn thing. But they will go on postponing it and go on harrassing you for payment threatening legal action. I'm still having such a problem with the largest nationalized bank of India, the State Bank of India. So, what to expect from others? It's better not to make such mistakes at all.