Each business discusses how the frauds happened.
CARLYLE – Quietly, and without fanfare, at least four Carlyle businesses were victims of a credit card scam this past January.
King’s Department Store, Kal Tire, the Ramada Hotel and the Carlyle Rental Centre were confirmed to be the businesses defrauded.
King’s Department Store owner Ken King provided some details of his own experience. “In early January, a non-local customer entered our business and decided to purchase some clothing. He provided us with his credit card number and expiry date but did not have the actual card in his possession.
“Nearly $1,800 in clothing was purchased and the credit card machine approved the purchase. Over a month later, the purchase was deemed to be a fraud and our bank account was charged back for the entire amount. Because the purchase was made with a fraudulent credit card and no PIN number, our store was on the hook, and we experienced a total loss.”
Kal Tire owner Gavin Thomas was defrauded on two separate occasions by two related parties.
“In early January, a non-local customer phoned ahead to purchase some tires. The credit card information was entered into our Visa terminal by telephone and was system approved. The same thing happened a few days later for the purchase of tires and rims for another vehicle but for a larger amount,” he said.
“Both transactions were deemed to be fraudulent days later and our bank account received a chargeback for the entire amounts. We had some business insurance coverage, but we still took a substantial loss. In my 30 years of doing business, I have never had this happen to me.”
Marc Poirier is the front desk supervisor of the Ramada Hotel.
“In January, we had a person check into a room at the Carlyle Ramada. He provided his credit card information over the phone and a pre-authorization was set up and approved. Due to various reasons, he had to extend his stay and because we had his card information, were not at all worried.
“He left without properly checking out and the entire Visa transaction was declined. The room was also left in a mess.”
Carlyle Rental Centre owners Kelly and Susan Rekken had a similar story.
“In early January, a credit card was used to rent a van. The transaction was completed over the phone with authorization obtained. Weeks later, the transaction was reversed. We appealed the credit card’s company decision but were again denied and provided with no recourse. In our case, the van was not returned and was eventually found in Weyburn.”
To these business owners’ knowledge, the culprits have not yet been apprehended. However, that is not the reason why they have brought this rather embarrassing matter out in the open. Online, email and credit card fraud has risen exponentially over the past few months.
Every day there is another financial institution in the news defending itself for not providing full and proper restitution to its defrauded customers. Recently, financial institutions have been posting job openings for positions not even heard of even two years ago.
Two recent posts include new job titles of fraud agent and transaction review specialist – fraud operations.
All of the businesses identified in this article are aware of their mistakes and have already made internal and external procedural changes. Scams and swindles are becoming more and more prevalent and the know your client rule is more important than ever.
Everyone should be extremely careful when providing information, be it passwords, pin, or account numbers. E-transfer fraud seems to be a major issue of late.