Learning to take care of your finances
Published: Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, September 18, 2013 21:09
Earlier this week, I gave my bank a call. I wanted to check on some information regarding my new checking account and the balance in my savings account. Two weeks before, I had set up my checking account because of my new job, and to make managing my money easier. Or so I thought.
I had been waiting and waiting for information from my new account and had heard nothing. I was starting to get worried — and that’s when I gave my bank that phone call. I was talking to the bank representative over the phone and I asked her for the information regarding my new account. “Umm … all it says here is that you have a savings account. I don’t see any record of a checking account here,” she said.
“I know I do! I set it up with this branch two weeks ago. I called this exact phone number,” I said, starting to get mad.
I told her the name of the person with whom I set up the account.
“Here, give me your phone number and I’ll call you back. We’re going to see what’s happened here,” she said.
After we hung up, fear gripped me. I looked up my phone records to make sure.
Yes, two weeks ago from the same number. I kept hoping that maybe there was a miscommunication. I didn’t want to stress myself out over the situation.
But I couldn’t help but wonder, “What if that lady wasn’t who she said she was? What if I made a mistake? What if she was lying to me the whole time? What if I just gave this stranger all my financial information?”
They wouldn’t have a lot to work with, I was joking to myself. But this person could still steal my identity and destroy my credit before I even had the chance to get any credit in the first place.
It would ruin my life and put me into all sorts of terrible debt. I was so scared.
The representative from the bank called back and she told me that there had been, in fact, a lack of communication on their end. I was so relieved.
This could be a story about not jumping to the most radical conclusion and having some faith in yourself, but most of all, this is a story about financial security.
As college students, we’ve only just begun playing in the field of finance and we have a lifetime to live with it, unless of course you want to live in the woods by yourself with no money.
Even though we all like to think we’ve got things under control and we know a lot about the world around us, the truth is, most of us are still very young and still quite vulnerable.
We can be preyed upon just for our sheer naivety, and for that reason, we need to be careful with whom we share financial information.
I was lucky in this instance, but the cards aren’t always doled out this way. Be safe with your money and financial information.