Gangs Take PINs From Card Readers

Gangs in the UK are engaged in a new kind of fraud in which they steal customer information directly from the checkout card readers used by the store.

(Checkout card reader)

First, the devices are stolen or "borrowed" often by employees in on the scheme. The devices are then "upgraded" to record customer information and even unscramble PIN numbers from specially encoded chips on the cards. In some cases, detectives believe that the devices can even transmit their information via mobile phone technology.

The problem has gotten so serious that Shell disabled card payment at over 400 gas stations. In one instance, a gas station cashier was arrested for helping to defraud an entire village.

Abdul Samad Mohamed Raik cloned more than 500 debit or credit cards to steal 175,000 in a global fraud allegedly driven by links to a guerilla group in Sri Lanka.

Barely a single household in Houghton on the Hill, Leicestershire, escaped the scam which used a fake machine to copy card details.

Hopefully, these thieves didn't get the idea from watching science fiction movies. In the 1991 movie Terminator 2: Judgment Day, young wastrel John Connor steals money from an ATM with a device that unscrambles PIN numbers from stolen cards.

(John Connor - "easy money" in Terminator)

Via the Daily Mail; thanks to Moira for the tip.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/8/2008)

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