Card cloning

  spikeychris 19:45 06 Feb 2005

Last week I got a call from the fraud dept of the Nat West bank. They rang because a number of payments had been taken from our account to ‘3’ the mobile phone company. This was last Monday and the payments had been made at 3 am Sunday morning – the time and number of payments [4 in one hour] triggered some system into being that alerted them, then us to the problem.

How did this happen? Well the fraud department are saying there is a possibility that our card has been cloned. We read about such things and either assume they are urban myths or Hollywood creations that will not effect us. The police are involved so things will get sorted but how easy is it to be ripped off?

Today we went to fill up with petrol; I was under the impression that not all the numbers are revealed on the receipt. There is a section were xxxxx is inserted in lieu of numbers, this is what we received. However the petrol station gets a receipt that contains a full number list and the option of seeing the 3 digit security number on the back of the card.

In total, up to now we have been hit for £400 – not a fortune and no violence took place but it just proves that no matter how aware you think you are – you still have rely on the honesty of other people and until humans are takes out of the equation this will continue.

  Forum Editor 22:54 06 Feb 2005

Payments amounting to several thousand pounds were charged to my card and credited to a Virgin mobile 'Pay as you go' account that had been opened in my name. The Virgin system picked up abnormally high amounts being credited to the account over a period of about two weeks and they contacted me. I had no knowledge of what had been happening, but my card provider immediately froze my card account and set me up with a new one.

It happens more often than you think, although it will be far more difficult with chip and PIN cards. There will be no slip with your PIN on it, so nobody can charge to your account, even if they have all the details from the original card, or the card itself.

  Sir Radfordin 23:19 06 Feb 2005

Perhaps there is a case (again?) for having a low limit credit card for most purchases with a higher limit one to use for things that cost more. Whilst it wouldn't stop this kind of thing from happening it would perhaps limit the damage.

I've been in the habit of checking my online bank accounts almost daily partly because they are always so close to the bottom of the pit but also so that I would pick up on anything that wasn't my doing.

With the ease of online banking perhaps it is something we should all be doing a bit more?

  CurlyWhirly 01:07 07 Feb 2005

Sorry to hear that you had been robbed.
The card in question, was it NOT Chip & Pin?
If not, it must have been of the older type cards which as the Forum Editor points out, are MORE at risk from card cloning.
It could have been worse though, as the Forum Editor lost a few thousand quid. (shock)

  octal 06:59 07 Feb 2005

Problem is, not every outlet is able to accept chip and pin yet.

  Sapins 09:59 07 Feb 2005

CurlyWhirly, I don't think anybody lost anything.

  Kaz J 10:09 07 Feb 2005

I also received a call from Natwest on Wednesday 5th Jan this year as they had noticed that my card had been used a few times in an area which was outside of my normal geographical pattern.

I was very impressed with the bank, having not received a statement over xmas and new year period, as they had brought it to my attention. The matter was dealt with quickly by the bank and by the Saturday of that week I received a letter confirming that the funds spent on the cloned card (approx £970) had been refunded to my account the previous day.

Although I now have a chip and pin card, I have still been extremely cautious since when using my card. Having previously been alerted to a large number of cloned cards being traced back to a local petrol station some years ago, I now pay cash wherever I know that my card will be removed from my sight.

  CurlyWhirly 10:59 07 Feb 2005

CurlyWhirly, I don't think anybody lost anything.

You mean that the banks reimbursed the money?
I don't think banks like doing that, as it costs THEM money!

  kjrider 13:08 07 Feb 2005

Have different cards for different things.

I use a Shell card for petrol, a Sainsburys card for grocery and online/phone transactions and a Goldfish card for other stores.

If any strange transactions come up, you can soon see.

Last year one of my Goldfish card statements went missing in the post before I got it.

My card was 'cloned' and used on the day that my Card statemant would have been done - so they would have had a lengthy period before i got the fraudulent transactions on my next statement. Fortunatly Goldfish realised, and phone me up on the same day.

If you suspect something, get your card cancelled and get a new one with a new number.

You can also do that to stop direct debits on your card!


  spikeychris 13:53 07 Feb 2005

"In the U.K. alone an astonishing $200m was spent with cloned credit cards in 2000. That's over $500,000 every single day!"

click here

  Sapins 14:22 07 Feb 2005

Yes, the banks reimburse the money and they cover the loss, so they lose out.

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