AutoAid Declines Amazon Mastercards

Autoaid Logo

Popular breakdown firm AutoAid continues to decline Amazon Mastercard payments on it’s website for both customers taking out new policies and those renewing.

Frustrated customers report being unable to make payments using the UK issued Mastercard provided by NewDay Ltd despite the firm accepting other Mastercards.

This frustration is nothing new for users of new digital banks such as Monzo who list a number of reasons why their cards can sometimes be declined by merchants. Some of these are unique to the types of cards typically issued by new digital banks that default to online processing, thus causing a delay between approval or declining during which a customer may have walked off. However, we don’t believe this is something that would be affecting the NewDay cards as, unlike Monzo, realtime card data isn’t provided to an app on the customer’s phone.

Source code acceptance, as highlighted by Monzo, also shouldn’t be an issue in this case, as it’s not a bank transfer or direct debit that’s being attempted.

This only leaves out of date BIN tables, but as NewDay was set up five years ago in 2014 and the predecessor to this was Santander Credit Cards formed in 2000, the chances that the BIN tables are so out of date would appear to be very remote.

For now it remains a mystery, but stay tuned for further updates!

DPS Computing has reached out to AutoAid for comment.

Have you had a similar experience? Do you have a theory why the cards are being declined? Let us know in the comments below!

Universal Credit Scam Hits Dating Apps

Users being enticed in with ‘get money quick’ scam.

Universal Credit Logo

After media outlets broke the details about the Universal credit scam leaving claimants up to £1,500 out of pocket, DPS Computing can exclusively reveal that the brazen scammers have now relocated to popular dating apps, including Grindr, in an attempt to find more people to scam.

Scammers are approaching people online suggesting that they can make £600 to £800 online in a matter of hours as long as you have a passport, driving license and bank card available.

Different stories have been encountered, but the most recent is that they have a contact that works within Job Centre Plus that would open an unspecified account in your name, process back payments and then close the JCP account after the payments had been deposited in your account.

Responding to common privacy fears, the scammers attempt to reassure would be victims by saying that your documents are uploaded directly to a government approved and authorised application and there is no need to pass your details directly to them.

Verifying through the app will avoid any interviews with an adviser at Job Centre Plus according to the scammers.

For facilitating this ‘free money’, the scammers demand 50% or more of the payment as a fee. However, unknowingly the money is likely to have been obtained via a fraudulent benefits claim which will leave the victim potentially thousands of pounds out of pocket as well as collectively costing the tax payer millions.

Despite the growing crisis, the government appears to be completely unable to put a stop to this scam and have today warned victims that they may still have to pay the money claimed back according to the BBC.

Twitter ‘Embed Tweet’ Preview Bug

Twitter logo

I know what you’re thinking – ‘Shut the door, Twitter has a bug’.

Well yes it does, and we’ve found it – but thankfully it’s not too much of a biggie.

Those who have embedded a tweet, for example, on a website or blog will be familiar with the following screen:

All is fine here.

If you’ve ever embedded a reply to a tweet you’ll see a similar screen, but with extra options regarding the parent tweet:

Still, nothing out of place here.

But if you uncheck the ‘Include parent Tweet’ checkbox you may notice your browser window getting longer and longer, with the scrollbar getting smaller and smaller.  So what’s behind the page growth?:

Taking a look at the preview section below, you’ll notice that the preview isn’t clearing the previous preview and regenerating it but is instead just tacking it onto the end of the last preview.  Hit the checkbox a few more times and you’ll get a few more.

If you’re really bored and are looking for something to do – and in the spirit of full disclosure, yes I did, for a minute or so – you can keep clicking the ‘Include parent Tweet’ checkbox and see how large you can make your browser window without crashing your browser or computer.

It’s not often we see bugs fly through onto a live site by a company as big as this, but it’s not impossible.  It always goes to show that it doesn’t matter who you are, you need to QA your code before it goes live to the world!

Matt Hancock MP Launches App To Bemusement Of General Public

Matt Hancock – some people know him, some people don’t – he’s the current Digital, Culture, Media & Sport secretary of the United Kingdom and forms part of Her Majesty’s Government.

His department is the former Culture, Media & Sport department and in an effort to show that he considers ‘Digital’ an important part of his role, he’s embraced the world of digital and employed a development agency to make an app.  A phone app.  An app you can use on your tablets.  An app all about…

Matt Hancock

Introducing the new ‘Matt Hancock’ app!  To quote an early adopter, Robert Hutton, “it’s like having an actual Matt Hancock in the palm of your hand!”.

Stills are from the intro video that you are greeted with after first launching the Matt Hancock app.  The purported aim of the app is to engage with his local constituents in West Suffolk but, needless to say, in a matter of days, Matt Hancock has gone global.  OK, global *may* be a slight exaggeration but he’s certainly gone national.  Absolutely further than West Suffolk.

Although no, I’ve not personally joined the Matt Hancock revolution yet.

What’s It All About?

Well, leaving connecting with constituents to one side, it’s social media, kind of Facebook-esque (old world, not current!) and people can be social with each other.

But… rather than having Mark Zuckerberg to idolise like a god you have Matt Hancock.  Matt Hancock has put himself all over the app.  You can check in on what Matt Hancock is currently doing.  Look at what he’s having for tea.  Have a look at the latest selfie he’s taken.

But, it’s not a vanity project… honest!

Who Are The People Using It?

Good question – at the moment, journalists have jumped all over.  Also, Matt Hancock seems to have a lot of ‘fans’ that have also joined up.  Also, following his new found fame with the launch of the eponymous app, a whole cross section of society appear to have signed up.  International take up appears low at this time, but it’s early days.

Whilst users of the worlds biggest social networking site Facebook are sometimes unofficially known as ‘Facebookers’ or ‘Zuckers’, following on in a similar fashion, users of Matt Hancock are affectionately (yet unofficially, as far as we know) known as ‘Mancocks’ or just ‘cocks’ for short (hence the 17+ app rating).

What’s Not To Like?

Well, not much I guess.

The department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, which oversees the Information Commissioners Office, stresses the importance of app developers following it’s official guidance for privacy in mobile apps.

Seems developers Disciple Media may not have got the memo though.

Given the recent debacle surrounding allegedly “handsy” MP’s, Matt Hancock sure wants to get his hands on your data:

But, at least he asks.

Will Matt Hancock overtake Facebook?  Only time can tell.

For now, we’ll leave you with Matt Hancock singing ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ in the style of Queen – enjoy!

From April 2017, ALL BT customers will be paying for BT Sport (whether you subscribe or not!).

But I don’t subscribe!?

You do now!  No, seriously, you do!

It doesn’t matter anymore – you’re in.  One way or another, from 2nd April 2017, all BT customers, whether you take phone, broadband or any other BT service will be forced to chip in an extra payment each and every month to fund the ludicrous £1.2bn paid by BT Sport for Champions League football rights for the next few seasons.

But why aren’t they simply increasing the price of BT Sport?

They have.  Lots.

And the fact is, the raw customer data is now showing them that if they increase the cost of BT Sport anymore, they will actually start proportionally losing more customers than is compensated for by the increase in revenue.

So naturally, as any good-for-nothing company then goes and does, they see whether they can pick pocket their other loyal customers to get them to pay over the odds for a service that they neither want nor receive.

Now, I’m a football fan – but no one in this country, football fan or otherwise, can actually justify the ludicrous sums of money that companies like BT are paying for one of the most over priced commodities in the land.

Stop whining!  It’s capitalism / the free market.

I’m a fan of capitalism and the free market as much as the next man, but actually, the assertion that this is capitalism or the free market is completely and utterly factually incorrect.

The price paid for the goods and services in question, i.e. Champions League football for 3 seasons, are actually not worth what is being paid for them.

In business terms – paying this much for this deal would be seen as total and utter business suicide.  Remember, ITV Digital?

The fact is, to fund these kinds of horrific and quite frankly sickening deals, BT Sports subscribers would actually have to be paying 3, 4, 5 maybe even 6 times what they are currently paying.  They could easily, justifiably be paying £100/month or more – and it still probably wouldn’t be enough.

Of course, even the most dedicated football fan isn’t going to do this – after all, everyone has their limits – even if it is their passion.

That’s why everyone has to pay.

It’s hardly a large increase!?

Well, actually 8% is a pretty large increase.  Particularly as the previous years inflation was scraping around 1.0%.

And that’s not all, BT are at the same time withdrawing discounts for existing customers as their deals come to an end leading to up to 50% increase in price for existing customers on special deals.

And, this is in the context of 4 or 5 times inflation increases by BT year after year.  They’re making a complete killing – and it’s at your expense.

They’ve frozen the price of line rental – what more do you want?

That’s nice of them.  After all, they have been hiking it for years – so one years freeze still leaves you massively out of pocket.

And we do have to remember that actually the majority of line rental customers don’t even want the ‘service’.

And the fact that despite, over recent years, the cost to telecoms companies of providing a line has decreased 75%, this hasn’t stopped them hiking the price, well above inflation, year after year.

In fact, between 2010 – 2016 – despite the wholesale cost of providing phone lines to customers decreasing by 21.3%, BT actually chose over the same period to increase the cost of lines to it’s customers by 23.3%.

No ones losing out though?

No, you’re right.  No one’s losing out.  Oh…. except…

EVERYONE!

Why?  Well for a start, the vulnerable, elderly and poor are now paying a fortune (that they cannot afford) for an average service which in many cases – may literally – be a lifeline.

But if the death of an older relative that can’t contact anybody because their landline was cut off when they couldn’t afford the extortionate bills anymore isn’t enough to convince you then…

Whether we like it or not – when deals like this are signed, people die.

Don’t be stupid…. Football causes deaths?

Nope, not football itself, but deals like this do.

Because guess what – the more we pay to football organisations for TV rights, the more they pay their players and….

The more the players are paid, the less tax they pay!

Remember, footballers are not like us – they only have to pay the amount of tax that they feel they should (which is usually none/very little) rather than the actual amount of tax they owe.

Don’t believe me?  Fortunately for you, you don’t have to:

And the list goes on and on and on….

All this ‘avoided’ / evaded tax means that your local hospitals close, your council tax bill rockets, public services get savaged.  You know the austerity script by now I’m sure.

What should I do?

Tell BT to shove their price rises and football rights where the sun doesn’t shine and move to a provider that isn’t going to rinse you and might actually provide you with semi-decent telecoms service!