ALL Of The Techies At Direct Express Should Be Fired

30 11 2022

  By Timothy D. Naegele[1]

The Direct Express debit card has been issued by Comerica Bank since it was selected by the U.S. Department of the Treasury in January of 2008.  The federal government uses the Express Debit product to issue electronic payments—such as Social Security benefits—to people who do not have bank accounts and to those who choose not to receive their payments otherwise.

The Direct Express card is a prepaid debit card offered to federal benefit recipients who receive their benefits electronically.  Users do not need to have a bank account to sign up for the card; and there is no credit check or minimum balance requirement.  Among the federal agencies that use the card are the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Department of Labor, the Railroad Retirement Board, the Social Security Administration, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

As of October 16, 2018. approximately 4.5 million Americans and their families were served by the Direct Express programs, including thousands of veterans and some of our country’s most vulnerable citizens, including older Americans and Americans with disabilities.[2].  Recently, Comerica’s technical staff—or “Techies”—have created chaos in the lives of Direct Express cardholders, by making it impossible to log in, and to obtain critical and time-sensitive documents.

The Coronavirus pandemic brought about dramatic changes in America’s workforce, whereby many began working remotely with little or no supervision.  Techies, in particular, made changes to Websites that had been functioning well, to justify their existences.  The extreme seems to have befallen Comerica and its Direct Express workforce, which have made changes that invariably strike fear in their customers.

Many Americans have used the Web for decades and are very conversant with such problems, and are generally quite patient in dealing with them.  Others who are often aged and not used to the nuances of the Web are befuddled by such changes, and even panic from them.  They don’t understand what has happened to their money when they must effectively create new accounts; whereas, everything had been working properly.

Fair or not, the onus of such chaos rests with the Techies who created this mess and hurt loyal customers, and must be fired.  New employees must be brought in to fix the problems and restore a sense of order and normality.  Serious thought should be given to removing Comerica’s Treasury Department selection, and choosing some other business entity to handle such sensitive matters.  Bank of America comes to mind, but even its Techies have made recent changes to its Website that were unnecessary.

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© 2022, Timothy D. Naegele

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[1]  Timothy D. Naegele was counsel to the United States Senate’s Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, and chief of staff to Presidential Medal of Freedom and Congressional Gold Medal recipient and former U.S. Senator Edward W. Brooke (R-Mass).  See, e.g., Timothy D. Naegele Resume-21-8-6  and https://naegeleknol.wordpress.com/accomplishments/   He has an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), as well as two law degrees from the School of Law (Boalt Hall), University of California, Berkeley, and from Georgetown University.  He served as a Captain in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War, assigned to the Defense Intelligence Agency at the Pentagon, where he received the Joint Service Commendation Medal (see, e.g., https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commendation_Medal#Joint_Service).  Mr. Naegele is an Independent politically; and he is listed in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in American Law, and Who’s Who in Finance and Business. He has written extensively over the years (see, e.g., https://naegeleblog.wordpress.com/articles/ and https://naegeleknol.wordpress.com/articles/), and studied photography with Ansel Adams.  He can be contacted directly at tdnaegele.associates@gmail.com

[2]  See, e.g., https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comerica (“Comerica”) and https://www.usdirectexpress.com/faq.html (“Frequently Asked Questions”) and https://www.warren.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/2018.10.16%20Letter%20to%20VA%20re%20Comericas%20Direct%20Express.pdf


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6 responses

30 11 2022
H. Craig Bradley

Bank of America Visa credit card customer service is….terrible. Six years ago, an organized crime identity fraud felony arrest by the San Bernadino County Sheriff netted thousands of purloined goods paid for with credit card numbers obtained from B of A. ( In-order to make a successful fraud arrest, the physical goods must first be seized from the offenders before the arrest can be made for the actual credit card fraudulent purchases.)

They arrested a low-level mule ( 20 something Hispanic Woman on Felony Theft charges). She was convicted and a parole hearing was held. I was invited but declined to attend. The masterminds of this credit card fraud ring just disappeared back to Mexico. These cases often never see the light of day because the probable cause rules are strict and budgets of law enforcement too thin. Big City police departments don’t bother, just fill out a report form and send it in. DIY.

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30 11 2022
Timothy D. Naegele

Thank you as always, Craig.

Since Wells Fargo is beset with endless problems, the Treasury Department must conduct a careful and exhaustive search, to find Comerica’s successor.

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30 11 2022
H. Craig Bradley

I remember working in the Forest Service in the early 1980’s. When a district ranger station employee needed a ball point pen, we were given a box of SkilCraft pens to use. Few of them worked properly, year after year. Do you recall them?
https://nib.org/sites/default/files/pen/pen-index.html

In-addition, the U.S.D.A. and Dept. of the Interior only purchased Dodge Pickup Trucks and Dodge SUV’s ( oh, maybe a errant Chevy now and then). Dodge pickups were always having some kind of malfunction, I recall. You needed a big fleet so you had some workable vehicles available when needed.

Do you really think the Biden Administration really cares about the customer service provided to beneficiaries through the Comerica Bank Express Debit Card? The State of Calif. Debit Card I received for my “Middle Class Tax Rebate” this Oct. is contracted through NY Community Bank. Its difficult to activate at first and customer service sucks.

I’ll wager Old Joe would struggle at the checkout stand when asked to insert his debit card in the chip reader. He has no idea it even exists.

Liked by 1 person

30 11 2022
Timothy D. Naegele

Yes, of course, Craig. Brain Dead Joe has no idea what Planet he is on, much less anything else.

However, the members of both banking committees in the Senate and House do have influence on matters such as these at the Treasury Department, especially if their constituents are being hurt.

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1 12 2022
Timothy D. Naegele

YOU Can Fix The Problem

If you are a Direct Express cardholder, you may be furious at what Comerica Bank’s Techies have done to you . . . and feel helpless too. What can you do?

Contact the bank’s CEO, Curtis C. Farmer — by phone, or by email at cfarmer@comerica.com — and demand that the Techies who instituted this abomination be fired immediately, and that the previous system must be reinstated NOW.

It is reported that he is paid more than $7 million a year. The least he can do is to help you.

See https://comerica.mediaroom.com/senior-leadership-team?item=26716 and https://www1.salary.com/COMERICA-INC-NEW-Executive-Salaries.html; see also https://nuwber.com/person/563aa56e98f8a849c1bb64cb and https://clustrmaps.com/person/Farmer-385q9i

Also, contact other members of the bank’s leadership — and your U.S. Senator and Congressperson — and demand action.

See, e.g., https://www.comerica.com/about-us/company-overview/company-information/comerica-incorporated-board-of-directors.html and https://www.congress.gov/contact-us

After all, it’s your money, not theirs!

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5 12 2022
Timothy D. Naegele

Read The Reviews Of The Direct Express Card On Sitejabber

See https://www.sitejabber.com/reviews/usdirectexpress.com (“Direct Express Reviews – 149 Reviews of Usdirectexpress.com | Sitejabber”)

Comerica Bank’s management of the government payments is an unmitigated disaster. But even worse, no one at Comerica seems to care!

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