Has the Lloyds Avios Rewards credit card suffered a major data breach?

There were many reports on Head for Points yesterday, in the comments, from readers who have seen fake transactions appearing on their Lloyds Avios Rewards credit cards.  It appears that there has been a major attack of card fraud on the Lloyds Avios product.

A Flyertalk poster picked up the comments on here and mentioned it on that site, and there were more reported issues.

There has been no official statement from Lloyds, it seems, which is odd.  If they have been trying to keep it quiet, it is now very much out of the bag.

If you have the Lloyds Avios credit cards, I strongly suggest you check your online statement immediately for potential fraudulent transactions.

Lloyds Avios Rewards card fraud

Here are a few of the comments:

Via HFP readers:

“About a week ago my wife’s Lloyds Avios Amex card was used fraudulently by someone over in New York for a few different things so we called Lloyds to talk about this and get the card cancelled and a replacement sent out. Logged into her account yesterday to find that my supplementary Amex was also used fraudulently earlier this week, also in New York. As my card has been sitting in a drawer at home and my wife’s has been in her purse the whole time, certainly haven’t been nicked and cloned or anything like that.

When speaking to Lloyds last night, they said that they were currently getting thousands of calls a day as they were seeing a lot of fraud on specifically the Amex cards people had, with the vast majority of the activity being contactless transactions in the US (the one on my card was for $100 at a drug store).

Therefore it might be worth checking your accounts in you have those cards (or perhaps others) and haven’t done so recently just to make sure nothing dodgy going on. The guy we spoke to said that clearly there had been some issue somewhere but given the large quantity of it going on, it was clearly an issue somewhere else and not with us – slightly happy but obviously also concerning there’s a significant issue somewhere else in the system! Certainly explains why it took 25 minutes to get through to their fraud team…”

“I also had two cases of fraud on my Lloyds Amex in the US. Taken off no problem but annoying.”

“I got a text from Lloyds over the weekend asking if I was trying to pay for something in Albertson? As I’d never heard of the place I texted back no. Checked my account and there were six transactions all in New York State I didn’t recognise. Two in Office Depot, one in Babiesrus. Called Lloyds and all removed no problem but it did make me wonder how the card had been cloned, I really use it infrequently.”

“I had to ring them last night as I had a fraudulent transaction appear in my pending transactions. They need to wait until it clears to refund it. Apparently there were a few more attempts that were declined. It does look like there has been a serious breach of security somewhere.”

“I have the Lloyds Amex and mine was also used fraudulently in the USA last week! Very annoying as I’m out of the UK in Japan and Australia for a month and was planning to use it a lot!”

“My Lloyds Amex was used fraudulently to pay some car parking charges in the US. I think there is a huge data breach here with Lloyds – just hope they only lost card numbers and not all of our personal information. I spent two hours on the phone with Lloyds this week trying to sort it, they were blaming Amex for it, until I said I’d call Amex directly and ask, then they changed their mind.”

“Same for me – queued for 45 mins on Saturday afternoon to speak to the fraud team after my card was declined – there was an attempted US transaction on there. And spoke to a colleague this week with the Lloyds Avios Amex whose card had also stopped working. There’s clearly been a massive leak somewhere…”

“Lloyds Amex – four transactions in California, last weekend, before I spotted and got the card cancelled. No issue with the MasterCard…”

“In my case it was Lloyds MasterCard which was used for fraud transactions. 6 attempts and also for luxury shopping bags purchase through online. I have cancelled the card. Looks like a major data breach from Lloyds side and they are staying silent which is suprising, no communication to customer to be vigilant.”

“Exactly the same thing happened to both me and my partner this week with the Amex card! Mine was used in a California petrol station last Tuesday and then two days later she had her card (separate accounts) used in Chicago!! I think it must be a data breach.”

“Have to say me too! 2 days ago $105 at Staples in the US (California) as a contactless transaction on the AMEX. I’ve never put this card onto Paypal so can’t be them, suspect leak from lloyds/amex themselves due to the number of issues. They did mention on the phone also to me that they’ve seen loads of these over the past week.”

“Me too! Mine in Bakersfield, California. Foot Locker, Kohl’s…”

“+1 to the Lloyds Amex fraud. I had a transaction from Office Depot in California – a contactless payment of USD 105 (didn’t even know that a contactless payment could even be for so much). Appears to be a huge data breach here! Called the Lloyds Fraud team and they are credited the transaction. Amex has been blocked and will be re-issued. MC not affected apparently.”

“Interesting to hear of this! My Lloyds AmEx got stopped. I called them and the customer rep started nattering something about “big customer data breach with AmEx” and also something about PayPal. I tried to press him for more details but he sounded either clueless or evasive”

“Whoa this seems like a widespread issue. I thought the two fraudulent transactions on my Lloyds Amex was because I’d recently booked holiday stuff (flights/tours) on Bolivian and Vietnamese websites and thought maybe some of the sites weren’t secured. At the end of October my card was used twice on the same day – one for a transaction with Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority and another at a grocery store in Anaheim, CA.”

“My BA Amex was used fraudently 7 times in California earlier this week: FedEx, Target, T-Mobile for £800. Got a refund two days later. Impressed by Amex quick response to this annoying situation.”

“Its certainly not a case of card cloning in the sense that someone is copying a card you have handed over, my card has never been used and never left the house!  Attempted fraud took place in USA. I did think someone had cracked the amex code for generating card numbers and then getting lucky with card numbers that were active, but some of the comments say the fraud was taking place using contactless, so dunno. More like a big data breach – i guess in about 6 months time Lloyds will admit it. The reason my amex card was new and hadn’t been used was that it was a replacement for an old card that had also been stopped!!!!”

“I’ve had 4 transactions also in California on my Lloyds AmEx and none on the MasterCard in the last week. All small amounts (i.e sub $30).”

“..and another one – Jeez! My card was used twice in a USA sports goods store about 3 weeks ago. I’d only had the card for about a month. Again it was the Amex, they replaced the Amex card, said that the MC was not compromised. Interestingly, the transactions showed as “magnetic stripe” on the Lloyds app – all my uses had been chip and pin or contactless, so it seems that someone has copied the mag stripe.”

“And another one here. 45 mins on hold and they’ve removed the transactions.  Lloyds really need to make a statement on this. I really don’t trust them now.”

Via Flyertalk readers:

“Lloyds blocked my Amex card, but didn’t tell me about it until I rang them up.”

“Just adding a “Me Too” – the pattern seems to be US-based transactions within the last week or so, usually totalling no more than a couple of hundred dollars.  Given how many of us seem to have fallen victim at the same time, this seems like a massive data breach at either Lloyds or Amex…”

“Last weekend I tried to use the Avios Mastercard and it didn’t work, but the Amex worked at another store 10 mins later so I thought maybe the merchant had a broken card machine. Then I tried to use it 2 days ago and it didn’t work. I called Lloyds and they said they saw fraud and wanted to cancel the Amex but not the Mastercard! They said it was ‘some paypal partner’ that put a charge on the card and it got rejected. ( again nothing suspicious on my statement). When I said that I heard other card members were also affected, they said ‘we do not know about that.’ By this time I had had enough and told them to cancel and reissue both Avios cards, they are on the way to the address, so should get them soon (can already see them on internet banking).”

“This happened to me too. I’ve never used my Lloyds Amex card – I only use the Mastercard as I have a BA Amex card. Phoning them up cleared things up, but I had to wait on hold for 40 minutes to get through.  Two transactions on my statement: Toys ‘R’ Us and Best Buy, and both were in-store with a magnetic stripe. Impressive seeing as the card has never left my house since it came out of its envelope. This must be a hack or an internal security breach that they’ve not made public.”

As I said above, you should take a couple of minutes today to check your online statement and ensure that there is no evidence of card fraud on your Lloyds Avios Rewards credit card.
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  1. Off to the USA today. I rang Lloyds to warn them and I was told the Amex card won’t work there . They claim an issue with security.

  2. nigel whitehouse says:

    we are an online retailer, and we have suddenly received lots of Amex card chargebacks; i wonder if this is somehow related, and more importantly if it is an Amex data breach, whether there is any way to recoup our losses

  3. Same thing happened to me a few weeks back, 1 transaction that Lloyds automatically blocked and 1 that I had to wait to go through before Lloyds refunded it. I haven’t activated my replacement card yet.

  4. Two more here – both my and my husband’s Amex card had fraudulent transactions from California. I assumed my card had been copied on a trip to CA at the beginning of this year. He hasn’t used his card for ages as his Avios stopped crediting 18 months ago and he’s still trying to get them. What a shower!

  5. Niall Sheridan says:

    Had my card declined on Friday – called Lloyds on Saturday (30 minute wait) and they said they had seen potentially fraudulent transaction attempts on my card (which never showed up on my statement) so they cancelled the card. Still haven’t received the new one.Lloyds are dealing with this really badly – seems like they are trying to keep this quiet.

    • “Lloyds are dealing with this really badly” – aware of the full details behind this issue are you as well as an expert on suitable strategies to mitigate? Might be worth waiting to find out all the facts before attributing fault/criticism..

  6. My AMEX has been refused several times. I then rang them – waited 40 minutes – at cost of 20p per minute – to be told they thought my card had been breached and they had cancelled it. I suggested maybe they should have contacted me and they said there were too many!! A new card is on its way

  7. Five weeks ago, got an urgent message from Lloyds to call them, at around 7.30am. “Had I just tried to order something in McDonald’s?”£8 something….obviously not. Pulling up my statement, there were numerous attempts to withdraw small amounts of around 25p during the night. The guy cancelled both cards, cleared all the transactions, aranged for new cards…….and life goes on.

  8. Lloyds contacted me about a week ago because they’d spotted fraudulent transactions on my card. Transactions in USA.

  9. My card has been blocked after they didn’t like a legitimate attempted purchase. Something I had been paying monthly for years.

    When I called up the rep did day say something along the lines off ‘I think they are just being careful as I think there has been an issue with Amex cards’

  10. This has at least given me an idea of what happened to me on Monday.
    My Amex card was declined during a contactless payment, but the MasterCard that’s linked to it approved straight away.
    It declined again later in the day.
    I spoke to their customer services, who said there was a ‘glitch’ and that I needed to put the card in an ATM to reset the PIN.
    As soon as the card went into the machine, it was withheld and I had to call Lloyds to cancel and order a new one.

  11. Lloyds blocked my Amex card last Thursday – called to unblock it at lunchtime and was told it was fine, but it must have been immediately re-blocked as it wouldn’t work a few hours later. Spent ages waiting to talk to them and they have re-issued the cards. Said it was an Amex problem….

    Interestingly a guy in my team with a Lloyds debit card had the same problem on Friday last week – he tried to get cash out in the morning, called them to unblock his card, tried again at lunchtime and was then told they’d issue a new card. So I am guessing Lloyds rather than Amex data breach.

    Slightly off topic, I took out the card in January of this year. Got the manual adjustment of Avios and £150 in May/June, and points still aren’t transferring automatically. Anyone tried prodding Lloyds about this recently?

    • A few friends had this same issue when they took a Lloyds card out. Most of the time, it’s because of a couple of details don’t match an existing Avios account they have and so they make a new one.

      A quick call to Avios and they can usually merge them in a few mins.

      • Unfortunately it was a known issue that Rob mentioned a couple of months ago – anyone who took out cards in January(ish) wasn’t having the points transfer. They managed a manual adjustment so it isn’t that they don’t know what my account is! Will have to give them a call!

  12. Same issue for me.
    I spotted two strange pending transactions (which I regularly check) on Oct 26th: one was about $1 spent on a website, and the other was about $5 spent somewhere by swiping the card. I remember I had to wait at least 10 mins to speak to someone in fraud dept, and got the transactions cleared and a new replacement card sent to me.
    Though I’m still waiting for the PIN since then.

  13. Mark Witham says:

    I had this too. 4 transactions at autoparts and discount stores over in the US, roughly $40 each.

  14. Worrying. Checked my statement and nothing dodgy, but need to keep an eye out!

    Definitely agree that something bad has happened (either with Amex or Lloyds) for this sort of scale of fraudulent activity to be going on!

  15. My wife saw fraudulent US transactions on her Lloyds Avios Amex 2 weeks ago including from my supplementary Amex. No alerts sent from Lloyds that they might be dodgy even though we were on hols in Israel at the time and Israel travel flags were set up on the account. Then last weekend my Lloyds Avios Amex suffered the same fate. I asked the guy what was the point in travel flags if all these slipped through and they couldn’t give an answer. Also even after my cloned card was cancelled another US transaction appeared which required another phone call. Beware!