This monday i got an email from my bank saying that i have an unrecognized charge from my debit card.

That is an old debit card( about a year and a half i no longer use), with no money in the account, i destroyed the card as i had no use for that one.

Should be worried about this? since in zeros, there was no harm done, but i'm still concerned about how they got my debit card info.

What i can do to protect my other debit card? What to do about the old one?

  • 6
    If you have no use for the account and it is empty, you probably should close it. This protects you against the bank one day changing the agreement to have monthly fees, and then charging you overdraft fees for not having enough in the account to pay the monthly fees.
    – Ben Voigt
    Commented Aug 15, 2019 at 22:13
  • @BenVoigt exactly. Merely cutting up the card doesn't do anything except prevent you from *physically using it.
    – RonJohn
    Commented Aug 15, 2019 at 22:18
  • @BenVoigt i will try to contact the bank and cancel but honestly here everybody leaves those debit cards without cancelling them, because is too bureaucratic and slow, even the assistant at the bank say it's better to leave to expire by themselves
    – Progs
    Commented Aug 15, 2019 at 22:37
  • The bank says that because it's in your best interest. It's also important to remember that the debit card itself is simply an instrument through which you can access your account. The debit card expiring doesn't impact the account at all. The bank will just automatically send you a new one with a future expiry date. You really need to close the account, not worry about the card.
    – dwizum
    Commented Aug 16, 2019 at 15:35

1 Answer 1


Are you sure it's not a scam?

An email from the bank - if it's not promotional - sounds fishy most of the time. It could be legit but in most cases if there is an unrecognized charge, the bank is usually interested to let you know as soon as possible - and email is not the best contact for that. In this case I'd expect the bank to call you instead of sending emails. So, don't click on any links and don't reply but call your bank back at the phone number on their website (not the email) and confirm if the charge really took place.

Should you ignore it

Although you don't care about the account, it doesn't mean you should do nothing. Even if the account is empty, if it can go into overdraft, you'll be responsible for paying it back (with penalties and interest). Of course, your bank will stop a charge they consider suspicious - but they will not stop a charge they consider legit! Talk to the bank and ask what you should do. They might be able to simply cancel your current card (if they detected a suspicious payment, they've probably suspended your card already) without issuing you a new one.

Is it OK for someone to have my card number even if they cannot use it?

Although it may sound harmless, it really is not: you'd be surprised how many online retailers permit you to make changes to your account if you provide just the name and payment information. Unfortunately, there's little you can do about that - except using your real card for online payments as little as possible (opting for virtual cards, PayPal and other payment methods instead).

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