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Two Credit Card Scams to Watch Out For

Two Credit Card Scams to Watch Out For

Credit Card Scam #1:

WARNING... New Credit Card Scam.

This one is pretty slick since the crooks provide YOU with all the information, except the one piece they want.

Note, the callers do not ask for your card number; they already have it. This information is worth reading. By understanding how the VISA & MasterCard Telephone Credit Card Scam works, you'll be better prepared to protect yourself.

Here's a story passed along by a concerned citizen:

One of our employees was called on Wednesday from "VISA", and I was called on Thursday from "MasterCard".

The scam works like this: Person calling says, "This is (name), and I'm calling from the Security and Fraud Department at VISA. My Badge number is 12460. Your card has been flagged for an unusual purchase pattern, and I'm calling to verify. This would be on your VISA card which was issued by (name of bank).

"Did you purchase an Anti-Telemarketing Device for $497.99 from a Marketing company based in Arizona?"

When you say "No", the caller continues with, "Then we will be issuing a credit to your account. This is a company we have been watching and the charges range from $297 to $497, just under the $500 purchase pattern that flags most cards. Before your next statement, the credit will be sent to (gives you your address), is that correct?"

You say "yes". The caller continues - "I will be starting a Fraud investigation. If you have any questions, you should call the 1-800 number listed on the back of your card (1-800-VISA) and ask for Security.

You will need to refer to this Control Number. The caller then gives you a 6 digit number. "Do you need me to read it again?"

Here's the IMPORTANT part on how the scam works. The caller then says, "I need to verify you are in possession of your card". He'll ask you to turn your card over and look for some numbers. There are 7 numbers; the first 4 are part of your card number, the next 3 are the security Numbers that verify you are the possessor of the card. These are the numbers you
sometimes use to make Internet purchases to prove you have the card. The caller will ask you to read the 3 numbers to him.

After you tell the caller the 3 numbers, he'll say, "That is correct, I just needed to verify that the card has not been lost or stolen, and that you still have your card. Do you have any other questions?" After you say No, the caller then thanks you and states, "Don't hesitate to call back if you do," and hangs up.

You actually say very little, and they never ask for or tell you the Card number. But after we were called on Wednesday, we called back within 20 minutes to ask a question. Are we glad we did! The REAL VISA Security Department told us it was a scam and in the last 15 minutes a new purchase of $497.99 was charged to our card.

Long story made short - we made a real fraud report and closed the VISA account. VISA is reissuing us a new number. What the scammers want is the 3-digit PIN number on the back of the card. Don't give it to them. Instead, tell them you'll call VISA or MasterCard directly for verification of their conversation.

The real VISA told us that they will never ask for anything on the card as they already know the information since they issued the card! If you give the scammers your 3 Digit PIN Number, you think you're receiving a credit. However, by the time you get your statement you'll see charges for purchases you didn't make, and by then it's almost too late and/or more
difficult to actually file a fraud report.

What makes this more remarkable is that on Thursday, I got a call from a "Jason Richardson of MasterCard" with a word-for-word repeat of the VISA scam. This time I didn't let him finish. I hung up!

We filed a police report, as instructed by VISA. The police said they are taking several of these reports daily! They also urged us to tell everybody we know that this scam is happening.

Credit Card Scam #2:

Here is a common scam targeting people with imperfect credit histories we thought you should know about...

This scam also begins with a phone call. The caller tells you that you've been pre-approved for a credit card. The credit limit varies from call to call, but the caller usually quotes a credit limit of around $5,000.

The caller says that this is a perfect way to begin rebuilding your credit and since you have less-than-ideal credit, this is the perfect opportunity. To sweeten the deal, sometimes the caller says that in addition to receiving your pre-approved credit card, you'll also receive a free computer.

Here's the reality: The scammer simply wants to get some information from you -- the routing number for your bank and your checking or savings account number.

Why do they want this information? They say it's to process the one-time fee (which ranges anywhere from $250 to $400).

Unfortunately, many people are falling victim to this scam. They give the caller their bank account information. The money gets withdrawn from their bank account and that's where the nightmare begins.

Some callers aren't receiving anything at all for the money that's been taken out of their bank accounts. Others are receiving a package via UPS.

What's in the package? An application for a pre-paid credit card and a service agreement for a computer that will cost them about $800!

So where's the credit card with the $5,000 credit limit and the free computer?

It doesn't exist.

To make matters worse, the victims suddenly start seeing unauthorized transactions being posted to their account and some have even had problems with identity theft.

Actions: First and foremost, don't ever give your personal information (such as bank account numbers and birth dates) over the phone to someone who calls you asking for it.

Second, never, ever apply for a credit card that you have to pay for up front. While it's not uncommon to have to pay an annual fee for a credit card (especially if you have tarnished credit), the annual fee should be charged to the credit account AFTER you receive the credit card. It shouldn't be paid for up front with your bank account.
posted by sailorgal on Monday 01st, October 2012 @ 11:20 am   
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