“Swiper no Swiping, Swiper no Swiping, Swiper no Swiping…”
Anyone who’s raised a child in the last 10 years is most likely familiar with Dora the Explorer and Swiper.
Perhaps the New York City police are familiar (I doubt it) but this week the New York police have indited 111 people and arrested 85 in a two year operation called “Operation Swiper.”
The Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said this is “by far the largest and certainly amongst the most sophisticated identity-theft credit card fraud cases that any of us have ever seen.”
It certainly was a big one…
Apparently “skimmers” were hired “to steal credit card data from customers at restaurants and other businesses” where the info was than transferred onto other credit cards that were supplied overseas from Russia, Libya, Lebanon, and China.
The main items of interest were Apple products due to their easy resale overseas.
In total, $13 million in goods were purchased using this stolen credit card data.
Unfortunately there seems no simple precaution consumers can take to prevent their credit card from being skimmed at a restaurant. I for one, turn over my credit, on a plate (might as well be a silver platter), to my waiter or waitress. It’s anyone’s guess as to whether this person is an accomplice in some identity theft ring.
I suppose one option is to pay with cash at restaurants. However, this is probably not practical for most of us.
The only other thing to do is to keep a close eye on your bank and credit card accounts.
Reviewing your monthly bank and credit card statements in a timely manner is always a good idea.
If you find that your credit card has been compromised. Immediately let your bank or credit card company know. They will cancel your card and send out a new one.
In my experience, I’ve found that they are also really good at getting the money back into your account if there is any dispute.
In the end, keep vigilant and keep an eye out for Swipers!
Until next time… Keep Totally Secure,
Head Shredding Guy