The Northeast District is investigating a number of recent incidents of credit card fraud against businesses in the Acadian Peninsula.
The majority of fraudulent transactions are reported to have taken place between August 23rd, and September 26th in Grande-Anse, Caraquet and Tracadie.
The RCMP say in most incidents, someone called a local business ordering big ticket items like generators, or snow blowers while providing a credit card number for payment.
Only after the transaction was completed were businesses advised by credit card companies the card was reported stolen and the transaction is declined.
As a result businesses have had to cover the financial loss.
Here are some tips and business practices in order to avoid this type of fraudulent activity and potential losses:
- Be cautious when making transactions with credit cards over the phone. Confirm the name, address and contact number of the person calling. Always ask for the three-digit security authorization number on the back of the credit card.
- When items ordered over the phone are being picked up or delivered to a customer, ask to see the credit card to confirm the information is correct.
- Use fraud detection tools such as the three-digit security authorization number on the reverse of the credit card within the signature panel. This will provide protection to the merchant in the event a compromised card number is used.
- Be aware of purchases where multiple cards are used from a single IP (Internet Protocol) address, or those where orders are charged to multiple cards but are shipped to the same address as these could signal fraudulent activity.
- Be alert for transactions with several of the following characteristics: first-time shopper, larger than normal orders, orders consisting of several of the same item, orders made up of ‘big-ticket’ items, orders shipped ‘rush’ or ‘overnight’, and orders shipped to an international address.
To report a suspected fraud: contact your local police service and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Call Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or report online at www.antifraudcentre.ca.
Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to contact the Tracadie RCMP at 506-393-3000. Should you wish to remain anonymous, please contact Crime Stoppers toll free at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), by texting TIP212 + your message to ‘CRIMES’ (274637), or by Secure Web Tips at www.crimenb.ca.