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Recent fraud scam – Don't be a victim

Recently a number of retail businesses have been targeted by a sophisticated credit card machine fraud scam. To date all known businesses targeted by this scam have been jewellers in Birmingham and Leicester, but this may change in the future.

The majority of businesses affected have not been Elavon customers but we urge you to read this carefully. The scam operates as follows:

  • Fraudsters enter the premises and purchase high value items via Chip & Pin payment. When the transaction is processed the retailer gets a referral message to contact their acquirer.
  • The fraudsters do appear to be the legitimate cardholders and have identification to support this.
  • Before the retailer makes the call they receive an inbound call from an individual stating to be from the card issuer.  To date the individual gave their name as “Nigel”.
  • This individual was aware of the amount of the transaction and proceeded to follow a security process similar to that the retailer would undertake when contacting their authorisation centre.
  • The individual provides the retailer with an authorisation code which the retailer then manually enters into the terminal.
  • As this authorisation code is not provided by the card issuer it is invalid and the transactions, if processed, will result in chargebacks being raised..

One retailer, (not an Elavon customer) attempted to make an outbound call to the authorisations number on his terminal but got through to the individual called “Nigel”. This retailer’s acquirer has no record of this call but have records of other calls made by the same retailer that day.

This suggests that the fraudsters may be redirecting phone calls for the business that they are targeting at that specific time.

The Police are currently investigating the case and working with another acquirer who offers acquiring facilities to the majority of the businesses targeted and also issued the cards used in the scam.  Arrests have been made but there may be others who will attempt the same scam.

Important note: Card issuers will not proactively contact merchants.  If you have any suspicions that you may be a victim of this scam use your mobile phone and call the appropriate authorisation line below:

UK: 0845 8500197   IRL: 1850 30 31 30