A day of theft

So I'm calling up my credit card companies today to try to iron out my bills and being out of the country for 2 months. I notice while I'm online at my credit card company a test charge from 3 days ago for 500 bucks from a merchant listed as PRO HOSTING out of MIDWAY, UT. Hmm, I think, I've never heard of this company. I call my credit card company, then I track down and call Pro Hosting. They look up the charge and it's for some website, chuongbill.com or something. Apparently whoever purchased the hosting contract had enough information to pass the credit card authorization with flying colors. The guy at Pro Hosting told me that for charges of this size though, they require a faxed copy of the front and back of the credit card (which is in my pocket as we speak). So thanks to good business practice at Pro Hosting, this test charge (when a merchant checks to see if you have enough funds to make a charge) never would have turned into a real fraudulent charge on my credit card. I called up my credit card company and canceled the card and started the fraud process (forms and stuff). So my conclusions. It's pretty exciting to have one's credit card, name, expiration, and address stolen (as long as it's caught in time) and proving me wrong about the state of affairs in the world, there are some companies out there like Pro Hosting, that have ethical business practices, like checking large purchases to prevent fraud.

The other theft today wasn't from me, but affected me. The backstory. Whenever I have to give my email address out to some company that I'm buying something from, or for whatever reason, I don't give them my real email address. I give them an email address with their company name in the address. For example, if I bought something from Acme Cement Company, I'd give them my email address of acme_cement_company_gene @ cementhorizon. Then I just set up my email to receive email from that address as well as my real one. The result is that if Evil Lacking in Ethics Cement Company sells my email address to a spammer, I'll begin getting spam sent to evil_lacking_in_ethics_cement_company_gene @ cementhorizon. This makes it very obvious who sold my address. This has happened twice before, with the company that I buy my Carhartts from, Walker's Farm Home and Track. I tried to get them to fix the situation but they were slouches. This morning I got a spam sent to electrexusa_gene @ cementhorizon. Electrex USA is a company that I bought a Honda VFR Motorcycle Regulator/Recitifier from a couple months ago (mine died on my way back from San Diego, leaving me stranded 35 miles outside of SLO). I emailed them this morning, forwarding the spam, and asking them why they suck so much. I got an email back that they're looking into it and then just received a phone call from a guy there apologizing and letting me know that they'd never sell addresses, and that he's contacting the spam company right now, trying to find out how they got electrex's email addresses. He's assuming that they must have been stolen somehow. My conclusions. Electrex is a real standup company. I was expecting the standard, shamed lack of response, from a company looking to make an extra buck on the side by selling out their customers, but I was wrong. Two instances in one day, of companies, on their own accord, having ethical concern for their customers. I'm just going to sit here and glow for the rest of the day.


  • michele says:

    while you’re glowing, put up some more pictures of europe. i’m curious to see this beard. and greece. and egypt. and lots of things. plus, i’m bored.

  • Dianna says:

    Yeah, I’d like to see how the glow works with the new beard. Does the beard glow too? Does the glow emanate from between hairs, or just beam out from the large swatches of bare face?

  • michele says:

    do you think you could turn it into electricity by scuffing your feet really fast on the carpet? could the beard conduct sparks?

  • Dianna says:

    It’s funny you should mention carpet. Did you know that I’ve been on a wild-goose chase for carpet for at least an hour, with no success?
    One might, in fact, find that slightly ironic since I work for architects and all. You know, people who make buildings, with carpet in them, happen?

  • kati says:

    It’s grand that you have encountered so many potential acts of theft in the last month that have turned out well for you. And that you’re pro-active about the spam. I, on the other hand, am a moron who gives my e-mail address out to anyone and everyone, and then gripes about spam. I am a sourpuss.
    So glow on with your bad self. And I’ll pout.
    Just to keep the scales even, you know.
    As for the beard, I’m going to pretend I haven’t heard anything about it. I like my world to stand still, thank you very much.

  • michele says:

    maybe you could make a honking goose carpet happen?

  • Dianna says:

    I’m sure at the very least I could produce a set of detailed plans for a piece of honking goose carpet, which would prompt 57 feather subcontractors to call me and ask whether the vagueness about flight patterns in the specifications will be clarified before the bid date.
    But probably not one of them would actually build me my goose carpet anyway. And wouldn’t I just feel like a silly goose then?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *