CRIME Credit card scam alert

From: George Heuston (GeorgeH@private)
Date: Wed Jun 02 2004 - 11:14:20 PDT

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    One of our list members had the following experience:
    I received this info from my wife at State Farm Insurance and Bank.
    Please be aware of this credit card scam. 
    Subject: VISA & MASTERCARD Telephone Credit Card Scam
    This information is worth reading. By understanding how the VISA &
    MasterCard Telephone Credit Card Scam works, you'll be better prepared
    to protect yourself. 
    The scam works like this:
    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> 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 #" The caller then
    gives you a 6 digit number. "Do you need me to read it again?"
    Here's the IMPORTANT part on how the scam works. The caller then says,
    "he needs to verify you are in possession of your card". He'll ask you
    to "turn your card over and look for some numbers. There are 7 numbers;
    the first 4 are your card number, the next 3 are the 'Security Numbers'
    that verify you are in possession of the card. These are the numbers you
    use to make Internet purchases to prove you have the card. Read me the 3
    numbers". After you tell the caller the 3 numbers, he'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", and hangs up.
    You actually say very little, and they never ask for or tell you the
    card number. But after we were called on Wednesday, we called back
    within 20 minutes to ask a question. Are we glad we did! The REAL VISA
    Security Department told us it was a scam and in the last 15 minutes a
    new purchase of $497.99 was charged on our card.
    Long story made short, we made a real fraud report and closed the VISA
    card, and they are reissuing us a new number. What the scammers wants is
    the 3-digit PIN number on the back of the card. Don't give it to them.
    Instead, tell them you'll call VISA or Master card direct. The real VISA
    told us that they will never ask for anything on the card as they
    already know the information since they 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, and by then it's almost too late and/or
    harder to actually file a fraud report.
    What makes this more remarkable is that on Thursday, I got a call from a
    "Jason Richardson of MasterCard" with a word-for-word repeat of the VISA
    scam. This time I didn't let him finish; I hung up! We filed a police
    report, as instructed by VISA. The police said they are taking several
    of these reports daily! They also urged us to tell everybody we know
    that this scam is happening...

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