Crime Stoppers: Card Skimmer Scam
We live our lives with our cards. Whether credit or debit, cash and face-to-face transactions have become nearly obsolete. That has opened the door to a new kind of crime, which leads us to this week's Crime Stoppers case. "It's a unique case because it wasn't actually his card that was stolen," explained Chattanooga Police Officer Mark Frazer. "It was just the number that was stolen."
The victim was an officer from Piedmont, Alabama. "He reported the crime," Off. Frazer said, "claims he's never been to Chattanooga and doesn't know anyone in Chattanooga."
The bad guys apparently used a skimmer, somewhere, to gather his credit card information. Then, they programmed dummy cards and went shopping. "Yes," Frazer said. "$650 in one day at multiple Walmarts, with multiple suspects. So, we have at least two suspects that we have some images of, who are using the same card almost simultaneously different locations."
These skimmers are not easy to spot. They look like they belong on and are working parts of the machine. "It's a great idea that, whenever you use an ATM or gas card reader, to just grab a hold of the reader itself and give it a little jostle to see if it comes off in your hand," said Frazer.
If this happens, do not use it. Report your find to the clerk or manager on duty. Back to our bad guys, have a good look. The pictures provided are from December. "We've got at least one really good picture and then a couple of others that, if you knew this person, you'd probably recognize them," Frazer added.
If you know one or both of them and you help us out, a cash reward could be yours. If you have to right information, all that stands between you and up to a $1,000 cash is one anonymous phone call to: 698-3333
An officer may answer the phone or return your call, but he will never ask who you are.