Monday, April 11, 2005

Absurd Restrictions

Warning: Rant Alert.

I have a Fleet credit card that has recently become a Bank of America credit card due to their merger. I logged into the new site with my existing username and password. I was immediately redirected to a screen where I was told to change my username and password.

The username must be ten to twenty numbers. No letters are permitted. They suggest using my social security number. Aren't we (as a society) supposed to be moving away from SSNs? I don't want to use my drivers license number since it's based on a deterministic algorithm. I don't want to use my SSN because I keep hearing that I need to protect that number. So what am I to do? Use a random number that I can't remember? Maybe the credit card number itself?

The password must be four to seven number and/or letters. No symbols are allowed. So my favorite eight character password that is mixed-case and includes numbers, letters and symbols is off limits—despite the fact that it's actually a more secure password.

I'm so peeved about these restrictions I'm tempted to cancel the card. I cancelled another card (Capital One) recently because they kept sending me SPAM about how I should transfer my balances, even after I "removed" myself multiple times, and even exchanged emails with real live humans! Stupid jackasses who make arbitrary, insecure decisions that interfere with my life.


Travis said...

[Imported comment* originally authored by Tim.]

Travis said...

[Imported comment* originally authored by Iffy.] SSN isn't even 10 numbers.
Also, cancelling credit cards can raise your debt to possible debt ratio on your credit card which may actually lower your credit score. Sometimes its better to leave a card account open but with no balance. Also helps provide a sense of credit history. Longer credit history can raise your credit score.

Travis said...

[Imported comment* originally authored by Travis.] Iffy:
Apparently (I emailed customer service after ranting here) the restriction is technically 5-20 characters, but all of the 5-8 combinations have been used. So they say.
I don't have credit card debt. I pay the entire balance every month. Besides, it's a free market. I vote against their crappy practices by canceling my card.