Thank You Whoever You Are!

January 21, 2009

Today’s local headline was about fraudulent charges posted against a few of our member’s accounts.  This was related to the breach which also made headlines late yesterday and today.  Heartland Payment Systems has issued a statement about the security breach at  You can read what we said about it here on our main website.  You can also rest assured that there was no breach at the credit union or with any of our vendors. But right now I want to say “Thank You” to the anonymous member who, just 15 minutes after the initial story came out on the Register & Bee website, went online to speak up on our behalf.  Here’s what was said:

“PCU is doing an excellent job of handling this. I had my money back within 1 hour of discovering the fraudulent charges. They also said they are going to call people who have suspicious activity on their account who may not do online banking and find the error.
It’s nice to know when something like this happens that they are going to do everything to make it right for you.”

Thank you!


Traveling Overseas?

August 23, 2007

Visiting another country can be a very rewarding and enlightening experience.  Just ask my father-in-law who went to Honduras on a medical missions trip last Spring and plans to go again next year.  With VISA being accepted virtually everywhere it’s very convenient to simply use a debit or credit card and not worry about carrying cash that usually has to be exchanged for local currency anyway.  (You usually pay a fee for that too.)  Recently our credit union had a member who was traveling overseas and was using his debit card for some big purchases.  Every time a Piedmont Card is used overseas we get a phone call from our card processor to find out if the transaction is legitimate or not.  The card is automatically frozen until they hear back from us.  In fact in some countries that have a reputation for being hotbeds of fraud and identity theft, Piedmont cards will not work at all without special attention from us.

So if you are planning an overseas trip and you expect to use your debit card, just give us a call to let us know so we won’t turn your card off when you try and use it.  Of course if your card is lost or stolen you can call a toll free number that can be found on our website, which can be viewed anywhere in the world!

Nationwide ATM Locations

May 25, 2007

Piedmont Credit Union is part of a nationwide network of credit unions who waive each others ATM fees! There are more than 2,200 ATM’s at other credit unions across the country that PCU members may use completely for free up to three times per month. There are hundreds in Virginia alone. The network is called CUhere and there is an Online ATM Locator at (See screen shot at the end of this post)

So next time you plan a trip look to see if there are any ATM’s where you are going that you can use for free! Remember that when using the search tool, check the box that says CU Here Surcharge Free Program.

Good advice for ATM users

May 16, 2007

Midwest Financial Credit Union, in Michigan, has some very good advice on their blog for protecting oneself at the ATM. Click here to read it. Similar advice can be found at CU*

If your Piedmont Credit Union ATM or Debit card gets lost or stolen call our office first. If we’re closed call 1-800-554-8969. If your PCU credit card is lost or stolen call 1-800-991-4964.

Beware the Invisible Button!

March 20, 2007

Last night I went by Danville’s new Office Depot. Quite an impressive store! Everything is very clean and new looking. The young lady who printed my daughter’s birthday invitations was very helpful especially when it came time to pay up. I’m a credit union employee who knows that when I use my debit card I need to always process it as a credit card transaction in order to avoid the significant fees charged by the point of sale machine. I can think of so many new debit card users who have asked why they were charged $1.00 every time they used it even when their total purchase might have only been $0.55! It’s because when you enter your PIN at the cash register the store is going to hit you with that fee just like a foreign ATM would. Well last night, when the cash register asked for my PIN I confidently pressed the “Clear” button thinking “Ha, Ha, Ha you’re not going to get my $1.00! I’m going to do a credit transaction and circumvent your little fee.” When nothing happened, I tried pressing “Clear” again. And again, no change, it only wanted my PIN and nothing else. There were no other buttons anywhere on the device so I asked Alex, my helpful cashier, for help. She told me of the “invisible” button located beneath the “7” which would take me to the familiar credit card transaction screen. How clever is that? WalMart has been automatically asking for the PIN for some time but at least they didn’t hide the “Credit” button! Lessons to learn from my experience:
1) Always treat your cashier with respect. If you’re nice, chances are they like you more than their boss who wants to maximize the stores profits by charging that $1.00 to everyone.
2) Don’t be afraid to ask for help. (unless you didn’t do #1)
3) Just start pressing random places on the screen until it does what you want!

Happy Check Carding!