I made an Internet transaction from one bank to another. Shortly afterwards, my husband answered the phone.

‘It’s for you!’ he yelled. By the time I got there, I was just in time to hear a recorded message asking me to phone a number. No pen and paper to hand, then it hung up. I rang the phone number on the bank’s website. Press 1 for this, press 2 for that, etc etc. After entering various details on my telephone keypad – card number, date of birth etc, I spoke to a girl. She asked me some security questions and then asked me what I wanted.

‘Could you give me the number of the Fraud Prevention office?’ I asked. ‘They rang and left a number and I couldn’t write it down.’

‘No,’ she said, ‘I’m not allowed to do that. But I can put you through to them. I just need to ask you some more security questions..’

Which I duly answered…

‘I’m going to have to put you in the queue for Fraud Prevention’ she said, apologising for the delay. I said it was OK.

‘While we’re waiting,’ she said, ‘would you like me to sign you up for Telephone Banking? You won’t have to answer so many security questions when you phone, you just enter your Telephone Banking numbers.’

‘OK,’ I said.

‘The details will be sent out to your address,’ she said, confirming my address with me, ‘they should arrive in 7 – 10 days.’

I thanked her, and after another few minutes she put me through to Fraud Prevention.

‘Hello this is Mark in Fraud Prevention, how may I help?’ – the line went dead. So I rang back the same phone number as before. Press 1 for this, press 2 for that etc., etc. This time, after inputting card number and so forth, it asked for my Telephone Banking Number. Which was presumably being put in an envelope back at the bank. Great.

So, I sent an email off, explaining to them that I was now unable to phone Fraud Prevention. A reply came back with a different phone number, tried it, Press 1 for this, press 2 for that, still need Telephone Banking number. So I emailed them again:
Please switch off my Telephone Banking, so that I can actually talk to you..