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Money WA businesses put on alert about new type of credit card fraud

04:06  12 june  2018
04:06  12 june  2018 Source:

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Police say up to four men are involved in the fresh wave of credit card crime.© Jessica Shapiro Police say up to four men are involved in the fresh wave of credit card crime.

WA businesses are being warned about a group of scammers who are using a deceitful type of credit card fraud which is costing small business owners thousands of dollars.

Police have been aware of the group - who are mostly targeting businesses in the Perth Hills region - since at least early April.

In some cases the scammers have defrauded small businesses, such as liquor stores, by more than $4000 in one day.

They are suspected of using stolen credit card details to make large purchases of mostly alcohol, and or cigarettes.

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But credit card loss, theft and fraud happen. Take heart: It's probably not the financial disaster If you place a fraud alert on your credit report, you will be entitled to a free peek at your report. [overlay type ]. Trump threatens 0B in new China tariffs. Administration exploring protection for farmers.

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The police Facebook post which went out on April 10.© WA Police Facebook The police Facebook post which went out on April 10. Police issued a broadcast about the group via the WA Police Wheatbelt District Facebook page on April 10.

"Wundowie and Northam Police are in receipt of information that a number of dark-skinned males (of African appearance) are suspected of engaging in the fraudulent use of credit cards in the area. It is believed that up to four men are involved," the Facebook post said.

"Police suspect their method is to approach stores to purchase various items (alcohol, cigarettes) and will advise that they don't have the credit card, only the card numbers.

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Placing a fraud alert means that your credit report file will be flagged so that before issuing new credit , creditors are required to contact you or otherwise verify your identity.

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"They will request a manual transaction to make the purchase - staff members will be requested to enter in the numbers to complete the transaction.

"A warning to all shop owners in the area, please be vigilant.

"If you are approached by this group, please decline the purchase and contact police as a priority.

"Attempt to gain as much information about the group as possible, descriptions and vehicle details to assist with the ongoing investigation."

One victim who owns a liquor store in the Perth Hills told WAtoday being targeted by the group had been devastating for her business.

The woman's shop was hit by the group last month, resulting in losses of $4131 in just one day.

The woman said because the scammers had carried out a manual transaction, the banks were not going to cover their losses.

"It is very upsetting and I am really angry," the woman said.

"They just manually entered these numbers of the stolen credit card and because it is being manually entered, we are not covered by the bank.

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A fraud alert makes it harder for the fraudsters to create new bank or credit card accounts under your identity. Sign Up for Credit Monitoring & Identity Theft Services. There are two distinct types of services available that can help when you’ve been a victim of credit card fraud

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"We are not the only ones. There are so many businesses in the hills that have been targeted."

On Monday police issued a statement, stating the frauds had so far occurred in retail stores throughout the metropolitan area and in regional districts close to Perth.

"It has been reported to police that a person will purchase a number of items from the store and manually enter the credit card details without necessarily having the actual credit card with them," police said.

"Police suggest that businesses check the merchant copy of their receipt, in particular, for letter codes “M” “K” and “H” which show a manual transaction has occurred."

Business have been urged to call police on 131 444 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 if they have any information about the group.

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