Woman drops Apple Watch at Disney World, claims $40,000 in fraudulent credit card charges

A woman lost her Apple Watch Hermès on a ride at Walt Disney World last month and subsequently claimed approximately $40,000 of fraudulent charges were made via credit cards stored in Apple Wallet on her Watch.

Woman drops Apple Watch at Disney World, claims $40,000 in fraudulent credit card charges
Woman drops Apple Watch at Disney World, claims $40,000 in fraudulent credit card charges

Katie Francis for WDW News Today:

The woman was fidgeting with her Apple watch while she rode the slow-moving The Seas with Nemo & Friends attraction on April 13. The ride was in an elevated position, the woman said, at the worst possible time when the watch popped off her wrist…

She had several credit cards linked to the watch, including an American Express card with an unlimited credit line, the report said.

The woman, who was staying at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, filed an incident with Disney Guest Relations to see if anyone had retrieved the fallen watch. She went back later, and no one had turned it in. “The staff advised her that they did not have the watch,” the report said.

Then came the fraud alerts.

The woman “advised that has several fraud alerts throughout the course of the day on her Amex card. According to the victim, there was approximately $40,000 of fraudulent charges on her card,” the report said.

The woman said she shut down the credit cards attached to the missing watch.

MacDailyNews Take: If wrist detection is enabled, as it is by default, an Apple Watch locks automatically soon after it’s removed from the user’s wrist.

If you turn off wrist detection, when you use Apple Pay on your Apple Watch, you’ll be prompted to enter your passcode when you double-click the side button to authorize the payment.

If you disable your Apple Watch’s passcode, you can’t use Apple Pay on your Apple Watch.

So, did this woman use a poor, easily guessable passcode like 1-1-1-1 for her Apple Watch?

Note also:

• When Find My is activated on an iPhone, its paired Apple Watch can use Activation Lock which makes it harder for anyone to use or sell an Apple Watch that’s been lost or stolen. Activation Lock requires the user’s Apple ID and password to unpair, erase, or reactivate an Apple Watch.

• If wrist detection is disabled, Control Center provides an option for locking Apple Watch. When Apple Watch is locked, Apple Pay can be used only by entering the passcode on the Apple Watch.

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8 Comments

  1. Immediately calling your bank, or cc biz didn’t come to mind? Sounds like her brain fell out of her head at the same point. “Unlimited cc balance?” Really? Why then and why now, seems like a relevant question. Hermes watch band…no wonder.

    1. Not sure if it’s true anymore, but wasn’t the original American Express card the one with unlimited credit line, but you had to pay it back at the end of the billing period? No floating a balance on it.

  2. Sorry…..I call total BS on this….
    The AW is not usable for NFC charge usage once off the wrist. A code is required.
    This stinks to high heaven….

    Me thinks somebody went on a bit of a shopping spree……

    Now back to “my dog ate my homework”

  3. About a week ago Apple released an advertisement that emphasized what other competitors and tech do with the breadth and sale of your private data. That made the media circles. This is something competitors and the industry and can’t respond to (it’s true). As seen from Facebook and a number of others, big revenue drop were caused by Apple’s privacy ATT, People given a simple choice to not share so much personal data can have a multi billion dollar effect on the Tech-personal data industry. This industry did not take it sitting down before and they are not going to now. You can expect more headline splashes regarding a hyper simplified examples of ‘see your data isn’t safe with Apple’. Be sure this absurd story here will not be the last. FindMy easily shuts down any lost device, a passcode makes the Watch an expensive paperweight, every charge would instantly be popped up onto your iPhone as an alert (you’d know the first wrong charge instantly), ApplePay doesn’t reveal the actual card number or the personal code on the back, and as a long time card and a two year user of ApplePay I can tell you large purchases will not be OK’d one after the other.

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