Everyone Can Use My Credit Except Me

If you followed me on Twitter yesterday, you know I was at the Apple store trying to purchase an iPhone. I bounced in about 1PM, and after talking to a couple of store reps decided to take the plunge. What followed next was the longest 2.5 hours of my day.

I’m going to link you to the back story, which I hope you will DIGG because that post has worthwhile information on credit fraud (more prevalent in the United States).

Continuing with this story, let’s just say I forgot that all my accounts are locked due to “credit fraud protection”. Ryan the Apple store rep had just walked me through most of the “interview” process for my purchase when he received some sort of flag on his point-of-sale unit. He had to call AT&T to port over my number from Sprint, and next thing you know my phone rang.

At the time, I ignored the call as Caller ID was “unknown”, and I was in the middle of this store purchase. Ryan proceeds to tell me that it was the AT&T rep, and she needed to speak with me. No problem I thought, until she called back AND MY PHONE DIED. Twitter followers know that I have been holding off on getting an iPhone, but my Sprint phone had been on its last leg for a few weeks. So there I was in the Apple store, trying to make my purchase, and I couldn’t because AT&T had no way to contact me.

It was then that I realized I had been possessed by the Cult of Mac. I was not leaving the store without a working phone, an iPhone specifically. I scrambled to get a USB cable from another store rep so we could get power to the phone. Got it. Asked the AT&T rep to call back, and when I picked up we got disconnected. Ryan asked the rep to call again, and she stated she had exceeded the number of courtesy calls she could make on an account. Holy crabcakes! Say it wasn’t so.

Ryan patiently spent the next 2 hours calling AT&T talking to a different account exec each time in an effort to get my service ported from Sprint. If my phone wasn’t sending the calls directly to voicemail, I was wrestling with the inordinate number of questions to prove my identity. Remember a few paragraphs back when I said I forgot about the credit hold on my accounts? Those holds are supposed to make it difficult for other people to assume my identity. Didn’t seem to matter much last week when someone attempted to buy a car in my name, but there I was making a legitimate purchase, and I couldn’t answer half the questions.

Finally, after the 6th call to yet another AT&T rep, my Sprint phone stayed connected on the call, AND I got five questions I could directly answer. Weathered & weary, I paid my dues to the Apple rep, shook his hand, and headed out the door.

I’ll be sharing my experiences with the iPhone in an upcoming post. Be sure to tune in as this adventure has only just begun.