Monday, February 7, 2011

Visa Card Scam

From Margie Tann iSekurity... You can receive these alerts by speaking with Margie...




This is an important notification for everyone regarding the latest in Visa Card fraud. Royal Bank received this communication about the newest scam. This is happening in southern Alberta right now and moving. It's also very sophisticated, since the scam-callers provide YOU with all the information - EXCEPT FOR the one piece they've called to get from you to complete their fraud.

FURTHER NOTE: the callers do not ask for your card number. They already have it. By understanding how the VISA & MasterCard telephone Credit Card Scam works, you'll be better prepared to protect yourself.

The scam works like this:

The 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 of how the scam works:

The caller then says, "I need to verify you are in possession of your card." They'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 last 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 last 3 numbers to him. After you tell the caller the 3 numbers, they'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" then, hangs up.

You actually say very little and they never ask for or tell you the card number. In this particular case, a call for the purposes of investigating the matter further was placed within 20 minutes of the initial call to ask a question; this call turned out to be quite revealing. The true & actual VISA Security Department informed our caller it was a scam and in the last 15 minutes a new purchase of $497.99 was charged to their card. Immediately, a fraud report was made and the affected VISA account was closed. VISA is now reissuing a new number.

What the scammers want is the 3-digit PIN number on the back of the card.
Do NOT give it to them!

Instead, tell them you'll call VISA or Master Card directly for verification of their conversation.

The real VISA CARD company will never ask for anything on the card, as they already know the information - since, of course, they themselves 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. By then, it's almost too late and/or more difficult to actually file a fraud report.

What makes this scam even more remarkable is that on a subsequent day, the targeted scam-victim got a call from someone calling themselves 'Jason Richardson of MasterCard' who proceeded to begin reciting a word-for-word repeat of this VISA Scam. This time, however, the scammer wasn't allowed to finish; instead, what they heard was the intended victim hanging up on them! A police report was then filed, as had been instructed by VISA. The police said they are taking several of these reports daily! They also are urging those being contacted in this manner to tell everyone they know that this scam is happening.

In a similar recent situation over the phone, the bogus caller informed the would-be victim that $3,097 had been charged to their account for plane tickets to Spain - and so on, following the above-mentioned routine.

It appears that this IS a very active scam - and evidently, quite successful.


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