What is this?
Thousands of situations like this are happening around the world today, sadly. It is a very common kind of fraud and people who do it are getting trained with better techniques and technology everyday.
One such technique is called “skimming” – where a card is cloned when the information contained in a credit card is copied by thieves into a blank one thereby taking everything from it’s magnetic strip.
This system requires high technology equipment and at least three or four people involved, starting by the person who takes the card directly from it’s owner and has connections with those in charge of copying it (if he doesn’t do it himself) and those saving the information and finally using the money contained in the credit account.
The process can seem simple but it’s actually a well prepared scenario as the card must be taken by a person with full knowledge of what will be done, and convince the owner to trust and give it voluntarily (in stores or any other services), if it’s not simply stolen by way of altered ATMs for example.
Banks and their customers have lost millions a year since this problem became popular, and as a result have produced a great solution for it: smart chips for credit cards which are effective by encrypting customer’s information on the magnetic strip.
In the mean time, if you can’t get your smart chip card we highly recommend to protect your credit card as much as possible when you visit restaurants, stores, bars, and services by not losing sight of it and always checking ATM card receivers to see if they are legitimate by gripping the receiver and moving it firmly to see if it detaches.