Potentially Serious Problem with Citibank. HELP!

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  1. #1

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    Aug 2008
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    Potentially Serious Problem with Citibank. HELP!

    about 7 weeks ago I walked into a citibank retail banking branch in Ma On Shan and applied for an HK citibank credit card. the bank associate took copies of my US paycheck (with all my personal information on it: SS, address, paycheck amount, etc.), US passport (with my birthday), and my HK apartment lease agreement (includes my credit card number on it for deposit).

    last week i found out citibank's credit application department never received my application, nor does citibank have any idea where my information is. it's not in the local branch i visited, it's not in their processing center, and it's nowhere to be found. now any americans here would know this is a potentially dangerous issue to my personal credit and my fear of identity theft is a real possibility as my personal info would probably fetch a good amount of $ as i have a spotless credit history back home.

    it's taken me more than a week plus 10 frustrating phone calls and 4 different people from different places at citibank for me to realize these people have no idea what the hell they're doing. when crap like this happens in the US i would ask for credit monitoring service to be paid for 3 years or so, but so far the peons answering calls and calling me have no authority or any idea what a credit monitoring service is. i keep pressing to meet and talk to the "duty manager" face to face but for some reason they want to hide behind a telephone. i'd like to slap them in the face but that won't solve anything, and now i'm considering getting a lawyer involved if they don't find my personal information or at least cover credit monitoring for 3 years.

    does anyone here work for citibank or retail banking? anyone know what the laws are in HK? can anyone tell me/suggest what i can do at this point? i'm getting very frustrated and if my personal info was indeed lost i would need to know ASAP so i can start monitoring my credit activities back home.

    thanks.


  2. #2

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    Can you walk back into the branch and ask to speak the branch manager and get them to resolve it?


  3. #3

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    I assume you didn't at least get a name card of the lady that took your details? And no paperwork to confirm they've submitted the application?

    Ummm why aren't you monitoring your financial activities back int he states as a matter of course?

    Just go to the branch you submitted the application and speak to the manager, Its a total waste of time doing it by phone as they can hide behind a multitude of excuses.


  4. #4

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    If you gave this information in the bank to a clerk, then i wouldn't worry to much about identity theft. It sounds more like sloppy work then anything else. Like Knowitall says, you should really speak in person to the manager of that specific branch and try to sort it out. You can get nothing of any importance done on the phone in this country.

    If it would be identity theft, wouldn't the bank associate make another copy and use that instead? Making it "lost" would draw attention to them i would assume.

    Last edited by FilipH; 19-11-2008 at 05:24 PM.

  5. #5

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    well i've already spoken with the branch manager, and the female associate that took my info remembers it, and the date i was in there. the branch manager even said they took a look at their video surveillance tapes that day to verify that my info, along with other interbank correspondence, was in the courier pouch and that they forwarded the pouch, so the branch manager escalated this to their corporate, where now i'm stuck. the branch manager is helpful but he can only do so much - he's no longer in possession of the documents and he has no idea what happened to the pouch once it left his branch.

    it's maddening speaking with these people over the phone, that's why i want to meet with them face to face.


  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by FilipH
    If you gave this information in the bank to a clerk, then i wouldn't worry to much about identity theft. It sounds more like sloppy work then anything else. Like Knowitall says, you should really speak in person to the manager of that specific branch and try to sort it out. You can get nothing of any importance done on the phone in this country.

    If it would be identity theft, wouldn't the bank associate make another copy and use that instead? Making it "lost" would draw attention to them i would assume.
    i agree it's sloppy work, and i don't think the bank associate would do that - she seemed pretty scared/stressed already and i didn't want to exacerbate the situation. all i want is for citibank to take some responsibility in paying for the credit monitoring service so i can have a peace of mind. now i'm thinking i should go to HSBC for the credit card instead...

  7. #7

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    casualsurfer: send a complaint to the Privacy Comission. The Bank is under obligation to treat your data carefully.

    Office of the Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data, Hong Kong

    There is NOTHING in HK law which requires them to pay for monitoring in your country. I do find it bizzare that they even bothered taking your US documentation.. as it is pretty much useless to them, other than to verify your work visa.


  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by casualsurfer
    i agree it's sloppy work, and i don't think the bank associate would do that - she seemed pretty scared/stressed already and i didn't want to exacerbate the situation. all i want is for citibank to take some responsibility in paying for the credit monitoring service so i can have a peace of mind. now i'm thinking i should go to HSBC for the credit card instead...
    Maybe it would be a good idea to make them sign a paper where they acknowledge the loss of these documents. Should there ever be a case of identity theft coming from this, you can hold them responsible. Good luck!

  9. #9

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    i took some of your advice and escalated this issue. turns out my company uses citibank in HK as our corporate banking partner so my CFO forwarded the issue to a VP at citibank, hopefully this will get some attention.

    i will fill out the complaint online, thanks for the link!!