It was Veteran’s Day, and Choice Financial in Walhalla was closed. Lacey Mathison, a Loan Assistant, was playing with her three and a half month old daughter, Riley. Kelsey Smith, Commercial Loan Operations Specialist, was in the grocery store with her four and two-year-olds. At about 1 PM, both of them received a frantic text from their friend Anna, a Choice customer.
“Hey girls, I’m trying to do some Christmas shopping and I got a fraud message. Trying to get these presents ordered because of Amazon’s ‘deal of the day.’”
Anna had presumed Lacey and Kelsey were at work. In reality, Kelsey was picking up blueberries from Aisle 4 as she wrangled her two and four-year old through the grocery store. She didn’t even see the text until after she made it out.
Lacey, however, on her second week back after maternity leave, had a serendipitous moment of freedom. Only minutes after receiving the text, Lacey’s sister-in-law happened to stop by. Lacey asked her sister-in-law if she could watch baby Riley so she could run to the bank. With that taken care of, she rushed over to Choice and logged into the computer for “Operation Deal of the Day.”
Obstacle One: Anna’s card, it seemed, was blocked. A large purchase Anna was trying to make had been red-flagged. The card security knew a large purchase like this was out of the ordinary, so to protect her from fraud, her card was locked down. Lacey got Anna on the phone, verified the transactions were hers, and then switched her card to active, giving Anna the ability to get her deals before they expired.
“You should be good to go,” she told Anna. Considering it a job well done, Lacey shut down the computer and headed home. She was in her car when she got another call. It was Anna.
“It’s still not working!”
Obstacle Two: Lacey sifted through the card regulations, searching for the loophole. Ah, there it was! A limit on the purchase amount for the day! Anna’s purchase was a big one, a TV, Lacey presumed. It was a Christmas present for her daughter, Anna said. But the purchase limit, again in place to protect her from fraud, was preventing that from happening.
With the deft expertise of a banker that knows the ropes — Lacey has been with Choice for nearly nine years — she upped the amount temporarily and verified the transaction.
“Try one more time,” she told Anna.
Fingers were crossed. No one breathed. The world stood still.
And then, a single text. Two words.
Lacey cheered. Thank-you’s were exchanged. Once more she hopped in her car and headed back home, to her sister-in-law and her baby daughter.
Operation Deal of the Day was a success.