Theft victim wants banks to tighten security for credit cards - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Theft victim wants banks to tighten security for credit cards

Zach Giano Zach Giano
NUUANU PALI, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

In just three days, thieves racked up 48 charges, totaling about $4500 at stores like Walmart, Kmart, and 7-11 all on Zach Giano's credit card.

The Nu'uanu man believes his new First Hawaiian Bank credit card was stolen from his mailbox. 

Ironically, the bank sent out credit cards to customers to protect them after several high-profile security breaches at stores like Target, Michael's, and Neiman Marcus. 

Giano didn't know a new card was on the way, so he wasn't looking for it. 

"Had I known, I would have kept an eye out for it," says Giano.  He also says he would have called the bank when he didn't get it.

Giano didn't realize he was a victim until his card was rejected this past Sunday at Sports Authority. 

He thinks the card was used immediately after it was taken.

"It was either activated already, or it was easy for them to do," says Giano. 

Giano wants banks to make the 'activation' process more difficult.

"I would assume that when you get a new card, you would have to enter your birthday or your social security number or a bunch of security questions but this card seemed to be active pretty easily and they went to town," says Giano.

Ed Pei of the Hawaii Bankers Association says it's unlikely the activation process will change. 

"It is an inconvenience to the customer so the bank has to balance the security issues, which are very important to them, versus customer convenience," says Pei.  He also says it's embarrassing for customers who forget to activate the card and it's rejected at the register.

First Hawaiian Bank will refund the money to Giano but that takes a few days and his account is in the 'red'. 

Honolulu Police don't have any leads but will review surveillance video from the stores to see if it can help.


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