My Amex number was stolen!

I checked my email Saturday morning and saw a message that came in from American Express at 4:15am with the subject line Fraud Protection Alert. Not an auspicious start to the weekend:

They ask me to call an 800# to verify the charge, which of course I had nothing to do with. At this point, I’m trying to figure out if this is a REAL American Express message, or if I’m being phished. But everything looks as legit as can be, so I call.

I talk to an exceedingly polite and calm man who reviews that fraudulent charge and one other with me. The other involved a $1 online purchase and was also flagged. I’m guessing that was a test purchase made by the thief to see if the number worked.

The nice man tells me they are canceling my old card and sending me a new one, which I should have in hand today.

Credit where credit is due: this could have been a disaster. Instead, it was a really great, completely unexpected but reassuring customer service experience. Kudos, American Express.