Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Are you still having issues with your Lloyds Avios Rewards Amex after the November hack?

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In November, Lloyds suffered a very serious fraud issue on the American Express cards issued as part of the Lloyds Avios Rewards MasterCard and Amex double packWe first highlighted it on HFP and it was picked up by a lot of the national press including the Daily Telegraph and Daily Mail.

A large number of fake cards – apparently with functioning signature strips – suddenly started being used across the US.  Someone had got hold of enough Amex card data to be able to physically create fake cards, presumably with some sort of fake card design in order to fool shop assistants.

The response from Lloyds was to block all of the affected American Express cards from working in the US and to re-issue them with new numbers.

A reader got in touch last week with an update on his situation.  Despite having got a new Amex card with a new number, Lloyds was still blocking it in the US.  This was a major problem for the reader who makes a lot of $ purchases for his small business using the card.

Before Lloyds actually admitted to this, in a later separate telephone call, he was fed a stack of nonsense from the Lloyds call centre:

  • “I was told (repeatedly) that it was the fault of the retailer as they were blocking it and Lloyds couldn’t do anything because it wasn’t them blocking it
  • I escalated to a manager but they just told me the same thing over and over and would not accept it was the fault of Lloyds and suggested I contact the websites about it.
  • When I told them it is happening on multiple US websites (I buy a lot of service for my business), I was told I had to speak to each of them individually as they may be blocking all American Express cards
  • I explained that my Amex-issued Amex cards worked fine, as did my Lloyds Mastercard and it was happening on ALL US websites so it must be related to my Lloyds Amex but they wouldn’t accept this at all
  • I was told this wasn’t affecting any other Lloyds cardholders “or they would have known about it”
  • I was told repeatedly and categorically that it wasn’t related to the recent “issue” in the US
  • I asked to make a complaint but was told this wasn’t possible as it wasn’t the fault of Lloyds and therefore all I could was offer my feedback”

Getting Lloyds to finally admit in a follow-up call that they were still blocking his new card was not the end of the matter, unfortunately.

His new Amex card is not earning any Avios.

Now, a small but significant percentage of Lloyds Avios Rewards credit cards do not earn Avios points.  No-one seems to have got to the bottom of this.  We first wrote about it here.  Lloyds promises to fix it for you in six months but in reality even that is beyond them.  They are at least now paying cash compensation to people impacted.

What is odd here is that the reader was earning Avios, but it was only when his Amex was reissued that he dropped into the minority who do not receive points.  It is all very odd.

Do let me know if you are still having issues with your Lloyds Avios Rewards American Express card following the November hack.


Want to earn more points from credit cards? – December 2020 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit or charge card, here are our December 2020 recommendations based on the current sign-up bonus

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here.

British Airways American Express card

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual and a companion voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

BA Premium Plus American Express card BAPP

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable credit card perk – the 2-4-1 companion voucher Read our full review

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Rewards Plus credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and the most generous non-Amex for day to day spending Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these:

American Express Business Gold card

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

Earn both Avios and BA On Business points with your business spending Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard for a limited company Read our full review

Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history.  By recommending credit cards on this site, I am – technically – acting as a credit broker.  Robert Burgess, trading as Head for Points, is regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a credit broker.

Comments (55)

  • GL says:

    OT: I wasn’t affected by the US fraud, but I recently had a new Lloyds Amex and Mastercard sent to me unexpectedly. My original cards are nowhere near their expiry date.

    Did this happen to anyone else?

    • pommy ray says:

      mine was stopped without telling me. someone in USA tried to charge one dollar a few times to the amex. did not show on statement. it is possible that happened to you and they sent new cards out.

      • the real harry1 says:

        I can’t understand why the USA scammers only went small time, ie a few dollars

        • Rob says:

          Often a test to see if the card works. The other fraud purchases were generally around $100, possibly to get around requirements to show ID for larger transactions.

  • Chris H says:

    I found an unusual USD contactless payment on my Lloyds Amex on 8th Nov. However, I had just spent the previous week in California on a business trip – but I flew back home 4 days before the transaction was dated.

    After reporting it and getting a replacement card, Lloyds have turned the fraud detection dial up to 11. I’ve never had transactions declined ever. But it got declined at home at a Tesco – which I’ve visited before – got an SMS, confirmed it was really me, transaction went through. I then tried to fuel the car, which resulted in the card being totally blocked. When I phoned them up they wanted to go through no less than 20 transactions to confirm that they were all me. Then yesterday it got declined again when I tried to buy something from John Lewis…

    Will be an issue if this continues as I liked flying to random parts of Eastern Europe, and if I can’t even use the card at my local stores, it’s going to be unacceptable.

    Despite what banks telling you about how smart their fraud detection systems are, they’re bloody dumb!

    • Chris H says:

      I forgot to mention, when I phoned up after failing to refuel the car – they claimed that they’ve had issues with people stealing phones in addition to cards *and* pins, so that they could answer ‘yes’ to the ‘was this you’ anti-fraud SMS. Amazing!

  • Steve says:

    My Amex card wasn’t reissued. However, it was refused on a pre authorisation change of $1 for a purchase from an American travel company. I eventually got through to Lloyds after waiting for 30 minutes, on hold, who put me through to the fraud department who said all Lloyd’s Amex cards were blocked for small web transactions and I should use my MasterCard. I went back to Customer Service to complain and was told this was incorrect and no block existed!