OKLAHOMA CITY - Dianne Hampton said she thought someone was playing a joke on her.
“Am I seeing the commas correctly?” she said she thought.
No, her eyes weren’t playing tricks on her.
She logged into her Cox Connect App to pay her bill for internet service.
That’s when she was blindsided by what it said she owed on her account, seven figures, over a million dollars.
“You stare at it [and] it's like you're hypnotized by this,” she said. “And, then, you go, ‘No, I don't think so.’”
That's when she pulled up her banking records and the panic really set in.
First, she said someone tried yanking a million dollars out of her account, when she’s not even signed up for Cox's auto-draft bill pay. Records show the payment was sent to Cox.
Of course, it never cleared because Hampton doesn't have a million bucks just hanging around in her account. Didn’t matter, though.
Someone kept trying to pull more money out of her account.
There was one payment for $100,000.
“Then there was a $9,999 [payment] that also tried to hit, and it's clearly from Cox and it was insufficient as well,” she said,
The amounts kept getting smaller and smaller until there was enough cash in Hampton's account for the payments to clear, two payments totaling about $1,200.
“Cox or anyone else you're paying a bill to and you do not have the funds, you get an insufficient charge [and] it bounces back to them,” Hampton said. “End of story. They're not going to come back for a smaller amount.”
There was a sixth payment to Cox that Hampton put a stop on just in the nick of time.
Cox’s spokesperson said, due to customer privacy, they can't speculate as to what may have caused the excessive payments that were initiated on the customer's behalf.
That got Hampton thinking.
Were the bizarre withdrawals caused by a glitch or had one of her accounts been hacked?
- Cox launched their own investigation and concluded "there was not a security breach on their end on the customer's account and the error was a payment error, not a billing error."
- They also claim they were overpaid, but Hampton said the payments didn't come from her.
We checked with her credit union.
Tinker Federal Credit Union’s Senior VP of Marketing Matt Stratton told the In Your Corner team they "processed everything properly and the issue appears to be between Ms. Hampton and Cox."
Friday, Hampton received her refund check from Cox, plus they waived the overcharge fees.
Her account was also zeroed out, and Cox went ahead and waived her $80 outstanding bill for internet service.