We were contacted after an alarmed member of the public had £30 taken from a shopping account they had previously closed. Was it a scam? Here’s what happened.
A member of the public returned a printer and toner they’d bought on Amazon and, after some wrangling, was refunded.
Annoyed, they deleted their Amazon account and data, but two months later, Amazon took £30 from their Nationwide bank account.
They were apoplectic, not just about the possible fraud, but also because Amazon had kept their payment data.
Amazon didn’t help, so they turned to Nationwide for a refund. It refused, but did offer £50 compensation for ‘service issues’ when reporting the payment.
Following this, they complained to the Financial Ombudsman Service, and it ordered a further £100 in compensation and said Nationwide could have done more to help.
They still hadn’t been refunded the original £30, and went on to report Amazon Europe to the regulator.
What happened here?
The £30 debit wasn’t fraudulent but was an error by Amazon.
It assured us it had ‘initiated account closure and deletion as soon as instructed’, but says it keeps some data for ‘legal and accounting purposes after this time and makes this clear during the account deletion process.
Clearly, though, that was news to the customer. The regulator might consider that if it looks into the report.
Retained payment data was used to debit a customer’s bank incorrectly. Following our involvement, Amazon finally refunded the customer.
Nationwide told us:
“As soon as our customer alerted us to the issue we acted to protect their account. However, we accepted our service on their initial calls could have been better, for which we apologise”
Have you ever had money taken from a closed account? How did your bank deal with the situation?