My gas card changed ownership banks, so I went into Internet banking to change the address that my payments go to.
It wouldn't let me. The page said basically, "We already know where to send your money. Trust us."
If you are interested in my musings about this, please hop over the pile of shredded dollars:
So, I called, and over two days talked with two Internet banking people at my bank, who could not confirm new bank ownership for the gas card or a new address for my payment. They said pretty much the same thing. "We have a relationship with Conoco and we can assure you your payment will go to the right place, but no, I can't tell you where that is." I just wanted to make sure my next payment went to the new place, and not the old place.
(Please don't yell at me about Conoco. That's for another diary, another day, perhaps.)
I was trying to be responsible, and follow up on the address change (as the new bank also tells you to be sure to do when they send out the new info).
After awhile it really irritated me that I let them hold my money, and they send it out to my vendors, but they won't tell me where.
The point of this really is that I learned some huge corp., not my bank, actually sends out all the payments. Now that I think it through I realize it was naive to think my bank did it. The reason my bank couldn't confirm anything is because they don't actually know. When I log into Internet Banking at my bank, I think I am interacting with my bank, but no, I am sending my info to some unknown megacorp.
I've heard a Kossack or two mention that they don't use Internet banking for privacy reasons. Now I see that there is probably one huge company processing all of these 'bill pays' at banks all over the country. All of our transactions are conveniently all in one place. Gee, to whose advantage is that, I wonder?
What to do?
I know it would be smart to cancel all this Internet banking, but honestly, I am not sure I can handle it. Doing it this way has kept me on time with all of my bills for many years. Several years ago I missed a gas and electricity bill. Just spaced it out. Got the next month's bill with 2 month's due. It freaked me out so much that I signed up at the electric company for automatic withdrawals out of my bank of the payment each month. Something I had previously sworn I would never do.
All of my other bills go from the bank to the vendor. The electric bill is the only one that is taken by the vendor from the bank. I do get email notifications each month when the payment is pending and how much it is, so at least I don't lose the sense of how much my electric bill is each month. (More personal information in my emails for everyone to read.)
Not really an aside. Kind of another point
I used to like these email notifications until I realized, now in addition to every conversational email I send, every confirmation email I get from somewhere I purchased something online, and now all of my banking info is hoovered up for any old body at The NSA, local authorities, who knows really, to see. I get email notifications when any transaction is made out of all my accounts. Pending payments scheduled, deposits made, charges hitting the bank, etc.
I don't think we should be discussing who should keep the information gathered through spying. I think it should be deleted.
As I look back, mostly I worked so I could afford gas to get back to work.
Funny that I can tie this into the entire diary about the gas card. It occurs to me as I type this, that I recall applying for the card as soon as things started looking up and I felt that my credit was sufficiently improved that they might say yes, so that in a future worse case scenario, I could charge gas to get to work.
Maybe that is influencing me as far as not wanting to go back to sitting at the table with my check book and stamps. What bad memories. I don't forget though. I will never forget. I will always understand what others are going through, and what I went through. I know I could be there again any day.)
I would really like to be off the grid. Cash only. No records. Privacy. I'm not doing anything illegal or weird, but I just don't like my every move open to strangers to view.
Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 6:53 AM PT: Thank you very much to our Rescue Rangers (Community Spotlight). Very nice of you. :) I appreciate it. :)