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Sad to hear that about Non-US card owners. In the US, I've had just the opposite experience. E.g., with AmEx, I had suspicious charges and before I even finished the description the agent interrupted me and said the charge and my card were both already cancelled and new card w/new numbers was already on the way via FedEx.

I'm not quite sure what pattern the agent recognized, but she sure didn't like it and they weren't going to put up with it for a second. I'm not sure why it wouldn't be in their interest to be this vigilant globally...

There are huge culture differences in different parts of the world, and no such thing as "global companies" -- local offices are staffed with locals. US customer support is probably the best in the world, only Japan could be a valid contender here. The rest of us have to suffer.

Interesting, and perhaps not surprising since a college acquaintance once told me (quite some years ago) that AmEx would only cancel your card in one country at a time. Seems he'd had some trouble in Europe (parents shut off funds or something), and while making his way home before eventually getting it sorted out, discovered that little tidbit.

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