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Old 26th November 2009, 23:16   #1
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Default Another credit card scam. With a difference

Guys, I'm posting this as a separate thread for two reasons.
1). We need urgent help. A separate thread title helps.

2). It's different from the usual credit card scams as this time, we, the merchants got scammed. Supposedly.

The story is like this.

On Oct 7th a guy comes in, buys some tyres and tubes.(I mention what he bought because it may be important. I'll explain soon enough).

He pays by credit card. We have a system in our shop that ALL credit card customers have to give their name, phone number and address. I know it isnt fool proof, but it's the best we can do. The name given is Mr.X. He gives a phone number. Let's call the phone number No.1.

Now, he doesnt actually bring a vehicle to get the tyres fitted. He takes all the tyres and tubes in an auto.

The total amount is 19,500.

As is usual, we get the payment from the bank after a couple of days.

Today, we get a letter from the credit card company(here it is Citibank) saying that the customer has filed a complaint saying he never bought all that and he never came to our shop and he never even lent his card to anyone.

The credit card holder's name is Mr.A.

The kahani mein twist is this. Mr A's brother is ALSO named Mr.X. Let's give him the benefit of doubt and call him Mr. X2. Mr.X2 claims he's never come to our shop.

Now, we have already got the money, but the bank wants to debit our account.

My feeling is Mr. X2 is lying. I have a feeling he's trying to scam us.

My colleague called up Mr. X on his mobile number No.1 and he claimed that he's never given a complaint against us or anything. He said he will check and let us know tomorrow. If you consider this, it seems Mr.X and Mr. X2 are two different people. I'm not convinced.

What do we do? What's next?
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:24   #2
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Keep the bank informed and bring the police into the loop. Give them the mobile phone number and your copies of the charge slips printed from the EDC. Show them the sales invoice etc. Seems a pretty deep rooted scam.

One possibility is cloned cards being used.

Wish you all the best.

Just one thought - Did you not verify the name and signature on the card and the name of the customer and his signature on the charge slip.

Cheers,

Last edited by Ravveendrra : 26th November 2009 at 23:26.
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:24   #3
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Forgive my ignorance but why do merchants have have to take this risk for the transaction when the bank manages the cards, approval, security and also gets the profits. Given you were presented a card and you swiped it successfully, its the banks business if its a fake card or a dispute, given their systems have passed the transaction. Is this how it works worldwide?

This is why eventually end consumers have to put up with places that don't accept cards or have a surcharge.

If the card is not reported stolen then its the bank to investigate the issue and resolve the dispute with the card holder. If it is or duplicated then still the bank has take the loss simply because their system approved it.
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:27   #4
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Do you have a duplicate of the invoice/bill that was generated? Will that have the customer's name etc? What about your copy of the bank charge slip? Did the signature match what was there in the card? I know it's usually not checked but it could be important in a case like this.

The original complaint to the bank came from A. So X would not know whether a complaint has been filed or not. That's why he told your guy that he will check and get back. X sounds like a scam artist to me. Either he cloned A's card or stole it. Wouldn't the bank take care of the merchant as well if a fraud was proved?

EDIT: Be super cautious next time someone picks up tires without a car. It just does not sound normal. Even if a car is there, note down the car regn. number.

Last edited by Gilead : 26th November 2009 at 23:35.
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:38   #5
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Thanks for the replies guys.

Of course we have the duplicate bill..... All our systems are computerised. And we do note down the car's regn number in ALL transactions. This time, unfortunately, no car.

I dont know whether they actually matched the signature to the one on the card. But let's be honest, no one does that nowadays. Even if I swipe my credit card, no one bothers to check and match the signatures.

Frankly, this is too much. I dont want to give in. We'll have to see what to do next.
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:38   #6
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@Nikhil, the credit card slip has a statement : " I acknowledge satisfactory receipt of relative goods/services". THe buyer has signed that, along with the amount .. he has to honor that.

I have been on the other side when a merchant did his usual sales and had me buy a higher price item. His explanation seemed to convey that I will be paying a lower price, and I agreed to buy. After the card was swiped & the auth came from the bank, the slip was brought to me for my signature. I refused, called my bank. They said once swiped they can not reverse the transaction / billing. I had to go through with the transaction.

Having said this, I wonder if this guy is going to go to the cops claiming he never received the goods. You'll have to figure out what to do if he does.


Going forward, :
1. I suggest that in such cases, you have the buyer sign your copy of the invoice. You can verify the two signatures, to make sure they are the same. If he just initials it, ask him to sign the same way he did for the payment. This way you will have two documentary evidences. And will be harder for him to deny 2 signatures.

2. For hand deliveries, insist that the invoice will be done in the name of the payer only. - hence the name on the invoice matches the name on the payment instrument.

3. Better still, make is standard that the invoice also be acknowledged.

4. Also, if delivery is by hand, you can write on both copies of the invoice that "delivered by hand". Or this can be mentioned in lieu of the vehicle registration number.

Last edited by condor : 26th November 2009 at 23:52.
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:43   #7
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I think we'll have to get Mr. A's brother whose name is on the invoice to come to our shop and see if we recognise him or not. If we dont, then it will be a clear case of a cloned card.

If it's a cloned card, why should WE suffer?

Who spends millions of dollars on making fool proof credit cards? Who spends millions of dollars on security? The credit card company. They should take the loss.
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:43   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikhilb2008 View Post
Frankly, this is too much. I dont want to give in. We'll have to see what to do next.
When you have documented evidence of the purchase, there is no reason for you to give in. The bank or the card issuing company has to swallow this as a fraud. I know for a fact that they even have a budget for this.

Last edited by Gilead : 26th November 2009 at 23:44.
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Old 26th November 2009, 23:46   #9
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The safest practise for merchants is to check the photo id proof of the credit/debit card holder and match it with the details on the card.

I'd suggest you to file a complaint against the person who bought the tires if bank takes back the money.
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Old 27th November 2009, 01:42   #10
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Nikhil, if your colleague had called Mr. X and he confirmed that he hadn't filed any complaint against you guys then why don't let him talk to his bank to settle the matter. I have a hunch that it's the bank who has by mistake charged another account instead of Mr. X's account. I would really suggest you to try getting Mr. X to talk to bank.
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Old 27th November 2009, 07:03   #11
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Just last week, I saw a notice in some shopping mall saying "As per RBI directives all credit card transactions above 7500 need to be supported with photo id cards".
Cant you also bring this into practice.

I remember 3-4 yrs ago, when I bought something worth 5k from big bazaar (electronics), they asked me to (a) Sign the slip exactly the same way as at the back of the credit card and (b) show a photo id card.

Regards,
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Old 27th November 2009, 07:31   #12
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Bring police into the loop. The person should be caught and taught a lesson. Install CCTV camera in your shop, This will be foolproof then.
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Old 27th November 2009, 10:07   #13
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Just one Point: Don't ever accept initials as signature. A signature should atleast contain the full name or surname.

My dad an ex banker always maintained that no bank will accept initials as signature.
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Old 27th November 2009, 10:51   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spitfire View Post
My dad an ex banker always maintained that no bank will accept initials as signature.
He is correct. And the signature most difficult to forge is also the one that contains our full name.

@Nikhil

A person using a cloned card will not leave his authentic phone number with you, neither will he acknowledge his visit to your shop. Check if he has got a debit for this transaction or not. If not, it is more than likely that Mr.A has been wrongly debited instead by the bank.

Also invite M/S X, X2 and A to visit you together to sort this out. And in future, ensure to compare the signature and photo with the card. It is very important, any slip up there will lay the blame squarely at your doors.
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Old 27th November 2009, 11:02   #15
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1: What are the terms and conditions with Citibank - no doubt you got electronic approval from them - they have no right to repudiate transaction
2: What is Citibank who asked you to refund or someone posing as citibank?
3: What tyres did they buy - might be worth snoopin around to see whether X2 has vehicles which require these tyres
4: Suggest you fit CC tv's and keepa months worth of tapes on record
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