Am I the only one that wants to go back to a world without user names and passwords? Just thinking about them gets my blood pressure up. Handling all of Scott’s medical has just quadrupled the number of log ins and passwords I need. The latest twist is the need for a verification code to be sent to your phone in addition to all the other requirements. Winnie the Pooh would say, “oh bother”; my Uncle would say “What the World” but I’m a WTH girl or worse. If you haven’t already gathered, I tend to be a little rough around the edges but generally relatable.
All you need to do is do a search or have a conversation about something and it suddenly appears in your Facebook feed or in advertisements on your browser. We unplugged our Alexa because she was always butting into our conversations. You know she is listening without your prompts. If Amazon purchased iRobot for all the information the Rumba vacuum cleaner can glean while cleaning your home then nothing is sacred any more.
Everyone needs a log in and password now; but banks take it to the next level. They are required by bank law to make getting your money back out of their bank as difficult as possible yet not quite impossible. I currently bank with five different banks for different things /entities and sadly, none of them offers all that I am looking for to entice me to move all my business in any one direction. They all have policies that I feel hinder my ability to do business with ease. And enough with all the surveys. Always asking if I would refer them to a friend. Where’s the box for Hell NO!
In preparation for my daughter’s upcoming wedding, I have been accumulating a nest egg through payroll deduction with an institution with locations near my former home town. Full disclosure, I dealt with this bank in my years with my ex-husband so it comes with some bad juju attached. It’s an old savings account; I have no checks and no debit card. I do have on-line banking so I had hoped to get her banking information, set up a transfer and shazam send her some money for upcoming expenses. I set the transfer and it indicates that my transfer can’t be processed. I get an email that my attempted transaction has caused my account to be locked. I called the on-line banking department for assistance.
As to be expected, the call starts out with the stereotypical how is your day going aka how are you today? Well let me tell you how my day is going. I’m holed up in a hospital room where my husband has been for 34 days. I stayed over at the hospital last night on a sticky vinyl day bed. I would say I slept here last night but that really isn’t entirely accurate either; with people in and out all hours of the night. I didn’t get any coffee this morning because I was waiting for the doctors to round. Fearing my head was going to explode, I finally gave in and went to the cafeteria at 1 p.m. for my coffee. Hoping to get back before the doctors, I skipped the Subway line and grabbed a dry bagged sandwich to head back up to the room. And here I am talking to you.
Of course, I didn’t say any of that but it was rolling through my mind the whole time she was telling me that while I can’t transfer that much money person to person, they can mail my daughter a check. Well, that’s a fine idea, let’s trust the US Mail system with that check rather than doing it electronically. How else might we get this done? She recommends coming into the branch. Let’s pretend I moved to California and not Vicksburg, because I’m not driving there and even if I did that wouldn’t get the money into my daughter’s account without additional legwork. I really did say that part. Let’s think; I can’t authorize anyone else to come get the money because I’m the only one on my account. The only way to add someone to my account is to come and sign a new signature card in person. Then she indicates that they have a great App I can download on my phone to facilitate a wire transfer. For $20. Pause. Hold the phone. What? First you said the A word – “App” and secondly you are charging me to get my own money back. I guess nothing is free these days, but I get dizzy with anger every time someone tries to offer help with the words “down-load our free App on your phone”. Not like I don’t already have enough people tracking my every move now you want to be linked to my phone too. I can also do a virtual appointment on my laptop; this is if I could if the hospital internet to support it; which ended up that I couldn’t get it to work. Surprised? After a few deep breaths and a slug of cold coffee; I begrudgingly download their App and create yet another account with them with another log in and password that I will never use again.
I connect with their virtual banker and within about ten minutes she indicates that as long as I have given her the correct account numbers, the transfer will be completed in a few minutes. Wow, thanks an hour later. I have to admit, that App was slick but my mind always goes to the other half of the world that either doesn’t have access to technology or doesn’t have the patience for it. You basically can’t handle an illness or hospitalization now days without technology. Scary.
No wonder there is a rise in mental health issues. All this technology is stressful. No doubt that when it works it’s great but it requires a LOT of patience for a mature adult with a brain wired back in the ‘60’s or earlier. I for one look forward to the day when, not if, they offer the option of being chipped so I could just scan my wrist and go. Never have to deal with user id’s, passwords and security questions that only block me from accessing my information ever again. You won’t see me in line for the latest and greatest I-Phone but when chip ID is available; I’ll be first in line. Without it, I’ll be the person in the cartoon included. Sure as the world.