Cowart's Common Room
Scam Advice

Just in case Ė itís a warning about a scam. This was forwarded to me. Apologies if you have seen it already. Sounds true enough.

Don't know how true this is but seeing as it's nearly Christmas be careful!!

This one is pretty slick since they provide Y O U with all the information, except the one piece they want.

Note, the callers do not ask for your card number; they already have it. This information is worth reading. By understanding how the VISA & MasterCard Telephone Credit Card Scam works, you'll be better prepared to protect yourself.

One of our employees was called on Wednesday from 'VISA', and I was called on Thursday from 'MasterCard'.

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 of bank) did you purchase an Anti-Telemarketing Device for £497.99 from a Marketing company based in London?' 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 £500purchase 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 0800 number listed on the back of your card (0800-VISA) and ask for Security.

You will need to refer to this Control Number. 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, 'I need 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 part of your card number, the next 3 are the security numbers that verify you are the possessor of the card. These are the numbers you sometimes use to make Internet purchases to prove you have the card. The caller will ask you to read the 3 numbers to him. 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 to our card.

Long story - short - we made a real fraud report and closed the VISA account. VISA is reissuing us a new number. What the scammers want 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 MasterCard directly for verification of their conversation. 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 more difficult 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 .

Please pass this on to all your family and friends. By informing each other, we protect each other.

Posted at 4th Dec 2007 - 06:01PM   Posted by Fennie   Scam Advice Comments: 7

Unpeuloufoque's Avatar fennie, there is a scam site which lists all the running scams or at least the most active, including scam emails, Jacko has its address but I might get him to post it when he gets back from baking biscuits for Japan.

Hope tooth has improved!

Posted by: Unpeuloufoque on 4th Dec 2007 at 06:45PM

Milla's Avatar I have the feeling that one of our lot got done by this last week. Obviously doing the rounds. How dare these swine con people.

Posted by: Milla on 4th Dec 2007 at 08:42PM

I think Blossom had something very similiar happen when she got back from holiday, seem to recall her posting about it.

Posted by: ZoŽ on 4th Dec 2007 at 08:56PM

Westerwitch's Avatar Yes Blossom put this same one up as she'd had a phone call exactly as the above describes.

Posted by: Westerwitch on 4th Dec 2007 at 09:28PM

Camilla's Avatar Thank you for letting us know about this Fennie, so worrying to think that these con men are doing this.

Posted by: Camilla on 4th Dec 2007 at 10:55PM

Jackofall's Avatar Just a gentle query, but does anyone know anyone who this has happened to? The origin of this is American (the 0800-VISA number shows that), and the 'Plese pass this on..." line is very indicative of a hoax. Not wanting to be a pooh-bah or anything, but, you know...

Posted by: Jackofall on 5th Dec 2007 at 12:12AM

Westerwitch's Avatar Yes it actually happened to Blossomcottage - she recognised the scam from having received the above email and hung up.

Alot of scams we get originate from Nigeria.

Posted by: Westerwitch on 5th Dec 2007 at 11:58AM

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