I went on line to check the balance of a gift card I haven't even used yet. I wanted to see if they were already subtracting the monthly fee for inactivity because I've been saving it for something special, like a vacation.
Someone hacked it and used it earlier this year. Apparently, people can take pictures of the bar code of the gift cards in stores and somehow hack into them that way. And I'm sure there are other ways to hack them.
The credit card company told me all anyone has to do to safeguard their gift card is to go on line as soon as you get one, register it, and change the PIN number. Then nobody else can access it.
I'll definitely be doing that in the future, even on small ones.
I can probably get the money put back on a new card, but it's a long, involved process, which I'll start on this weekend.
I have some of those, too. $4.95, $9.15, etc. The easiest way for me to use those little balances up (if they're generic, like Visa or MasterCard) is to go to Target where they'll put in the exact amount of your gift card as your first form of payment, and you can pay the rest with whatever.