Credit card fraud up by 108%

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VisaMastercard REUTERS File photo: Reuters

Credit card fraud has cost the Western Cape banking industry R30.2 million in the past year. That’s an increase of 108% since the 2009/2010 financial year, when R14.54m in losses were reported.

The national loss to credit car fraud was R403m, compared to R263.8m during the previous year, the SA Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) revealed.

Sabric chief executive Kalyani Pillay said the organisation was particularly concerned about the “card not present” category.

Commercial crimes unit head Lieutenant Colonel Jerome Hardenberg said crimes in this category involved buying goods, including airline tickets, online or over the telephone.

All the criminals needed was the card number, name of the person and the last three digits on the back of the card. Hardenberg said these crimes were most prevalent in hotels, bed and breakfasts and other establishments where pre-authorisation was needed.

The province had lost R19.9m as a result of this type of fraud in the past year.

The second highest risk in the Western Cape was counterfeit credit card fraud, which cost the banking industry R6.6m – an increase of 51 percent from the previous year.

Provincial Police Commissioner Arno Lamoer warned people to be careful when doing transactions at ATMs.

Both Sabric and the police advised card holders to be extremely vigilant, as card fraud spiked at this time of year. - The Argus

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