//Credit card cloning swipes India

Credit card cloning swipes India

Dhruv Bonnerjee & Faye D, CNN-IBN May 19, 2006

Mumbai: One swipe is all it takes. When you hand over your credit card to make a payment in a shop or insert it into an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM), you could run the risk of being the next victim of an international crime called "skimming".

And this could drain your account of all your money. Skimming is the latest fraud that has hit India hard.

The cyber crime cell of the Chennai Police recently arrested four people for withdrawing money from ATMs through forged credit cards. The police recovered 160 fake international credit cards through which they had planned to withdraw Rs 15 crore.

“There have cheated people of over Rs 20 lakh in the past three days. But, we were able to recover about Rs 6 lakh,” ACP-Cyber Crime Cell, Chennai Police, S Balu said.

The accused have confessed to being part of a UK-based gang that clone credit cards using a small machine called a skimmer that reads the data on the magnetic strip of the card and clones it. The forged cards are then sent to India.

“Fake card entry slots are used by criminals who perpetuate this crime. The information on the card is recorded on a device hidden in the card entry slot,” says Mark Bowerman, Corporate Communications, APAC.

Two days before these arrests, the Mumbai Police arrested a Malaysian national for using cloned credit cards to shop at five-star hotels, malls and jewellery stores in the city.

The accused had skimmed credit cards of tourists in Malaysia and had travelled to India to encash them.

(With inputs from Vivin Mathew)