Monzo card stolen - cashier/paypoint notification

My boyfriend had his monzo card stolen last night. He froze it as soon as he realised. And within the next 10 minutes we saw that two failed transactions had taken place at a local McDonald’s.

Wouldn’t it be great if cashier’s could be presented with an additional ‘card declined’ message that the card is marked as stolen. This could help identify the thief and provide an opportunity for them to hand the card back.

I understand there would have to many T&Cs here but nice way to make you and your card feel like they’re being taken care of.


Good idea… but murky area as to whether customer service assistants would even act upon such messages.

Would you risk asking for the card? In most cases they don’t even handle your card anymore since the card readers are public-facing. Asking for the card opens up the question of whether they have anything in legislation that would back them up or even the immediate uncertainty of whether the offender could potentially be dangerous?

Best thing to do would be to report it to action fraud - hopefully banks like Monzo will be of great assistance, providing locations of the terminals and exact transaction times therefore increasing the ability of the police to grab some CCTV of the offender(s) and eventually hand them a free pass to some time at Her Majesty’s Pleasure Establishments.

This made me think back to the old trope of a customer’s card being cut up in front of them for a declined payment.

There are some payment systems that have a decline code with instructions for the merchant to hold the card, and ATMs can eat the card; but as above: with chip-n-pin and contactless, the merchants are handling the card less and less.

many years ago I had a retailer cut my card in two at the request of their bank (which was different to mine) and they later explained it was a mistake on their part…that experience did not ingratiate me to NafWest one little bit

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That’s scary, I’m glad there’s the option to freeze the card immediately without calling up. It would be a good idea but difficult to enforce I think!

Another thing to note is that a stolen card is comprised - they have the card number, details and CVC (security code on the back), maybe your address from another card in your wallet… so could make online transactions at any time (think months later), even if/after the card is returned to you.

That’s why the instruction in the case I gave above is usually to cut the card and then post it to the bank, it wouldn’t be returned to you. It should be the holder’s bank making the request as the card is their property (your bank owns the card and permits you to use it).

I like the idea of identifying thieves though :slight_smile:

Would be great if it could be done more often but it’s not usually the crime of the century trying to fraudulently buy a Big Mac so faces unfortunately won’t be on Crimewatch :frowning:
I’d be pretty partial to banks/police submitting stills to a website for members of the public to identify but obviously there are a load of hoops etc they’d need to jump through including paying £10 for each piece of footage.

I’m not even sure if this is possible. Merchants don’t exactly get information about bank-side declines (for very good reasons!).

The problem I see here is that it’s a very good if everybody was honest and went out of their way to do “the right thing” but how exactly does this help a merchant? What incentive do they have to act on this information in a way that doesn’t immediately give the game away to the fraudster or cause problems with legitimate customers? All they care is if they’re getting paid (approved) or not (decline).

How would this work with the growing number of non-card payment methods? My current favourite fraud method involves just tricking an issuer into provisioning you an Apple Pay card.

Great idea Hannah. My only worry would be putting the cashier at risk by asking for the card once they are made aware that it is a stolen card.But, they could right down the time and date etc so that the cctv footage is not over written and could be used. But then again knowing when and where the card was declined could be used to request cctv footage i guess if you wanted to go down that route.

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I don’t think this is realistic. Banks don’t care a lot about minor fraud, it’s just a decimal point on a spreadsheet for them. Police don’t care a lot about minor fraud, it’s a nuisance when they are struggling to deal with murderers and rapists and banks should have systems to prevent rather than telling them to go and look at cctv of someone buying a mcflurry with a card they found on the floor. Merchants don’t care at all about minor fraud if they are not being defrauded, it’s the bank and police’s job in their eyes.

In this environment of none of these major stakeholders caring about it surely the best thing monzo can do is to block any and all suspected fraudulent transactions and make sure minor crime doesn’t pay. Yeah it would be awesome if the old lady behind the till whipped out some handcuffs and said “it’s over sunshine” when someone tried to use your frozen monzo card, but never going to happen is it :triumph::neutral_face:


Nice idea, but, the credit/debit card is really just an authorisation method and, combined with PIN an authentication method. In this sense, I think the best way to treat fraud is as a technical problem and consider the card to be “disposable” in the sense that authorisation can be revoked easily

The moment a card is identified as compromised, the Monzo approach is to allow the user to “Freeze” the card and, as time goes on, Monzo will no doubt produce state of the art Machine Learning based fraud detection which also Freezes the card (Sophisticated fraud detection is already carried out).

Upon Freezing, authorisation can be revoked instantly and, even if authentication (the PIN) is known to the fraudster, the card essentially becomes a worthless piece of plastic.

This way, no cashier / service agent is placed in harms way and new credentials can be sent to the cardholder.

Perhaps Visa/Mastercard and terminal providers could pool information that might be helpful if frozen cards are used as a few have suggested in this thread though.

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