credit card fraud & chip and pin

angrylad

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73
On a recent visit to Brussels I was in a late bar and there were 19 attempted transactions on my BOI credit card, in total €8,000 was taken from my credit card.

Once I discovered this I contacted the bank immediately and they cancelled my credit card - confident that my pin number was not disclosed to anyone I thought that it would be easy to go to the bank and advise that these were not legitmate transactions.

On arriving back I contacted BOI and they advised that all the transcation (5 successful out of 19) were verified by pin and advised that they believe that I had a copy of my pin in my wallet and are refusing to refund me, citing negligence on my behalf and basically accusing me of being a liar, while admiting that there was fraudulent activity on my account.

I put it to them that there promotional material advises that the bank may contact the merchant if they suspect fraud and that this did not happen and they have replied - negligence.

I contacted their CEO and got a letter of acknowledgement and that was it.

The banks seem to be shirking all responsibility as the pin was verified and they are going to be insisting that all consumers use chip and pin on all transactions from 17/03/07.

If I had to sign these slips as per previous credit cards I would not have been liable for these costs.

Is the new chip and pin technology the new 'get out' clause for the banks so that they no longer have to look after their customers???

My next step is the ombudsman (BOI advised that he always rules in there favour!!) Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

Deppressed and angry BOI customer.
 

woods

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778
It sounds as if someone had seen you using your number and had a good idea of what it was but had to play around a little to get it right. Were all the incorrect tries first followed by the correct ones.
If this was the case then thay can plead that you were neglegent but you can also claim that they were neglegent as this pattern of behaviour should have rang alarm bells.
 

angrylad

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73
Thanks for replying - below are the transactions and attempted ones

4.20 am €250.00 Successful
4.40 am €2500.00 Successful
5.11 am €2500.00 Successful
5.30 am €5000.00 Unsuccessful
5.31 am €3000.00 Unsuccessful
5.32 am €2500.00 Successful
5.53 am €5000.00 Unsuccessful
5.53 am €4500.00 Unsuccessful
5.54 am €3000.00 Unsuccessful
5.54 am €2000.00 Unsuccessful
5.55 am €1500.00 Unsuccessful
5.55 am €1000.00 Unsuccessful
5.56 am €850.00 Unsuccessful
5.56 am €500.00 Unsuccessful
5.57 am €350.00 Unsuccessful
5.57 am €250.00 Successful

and bank of ireland's systems didn't notice anything unusual
 

woods

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778
Well that is my explanation out the window. How can they explain how someone who had the pin correct at first could screw it up later.
I do not understand it but it does seem as if the pin was not known and you may be off the hook.
 

woods

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778
I take that back.
On looking at it again it looks as if it was not the pin that caused the failure of the transactions but the amounts.
It does look as if the pin number was known.
 

Murt10

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635
What sort of spending/withdrawal pattern had you got prior to these transactions. Do you often withdraw E2,500 in the middle of the night. The only times that I have spent over E1,000 on my card in one transaction was to buy some household goods or pay for a holiday.

Maybe it's just me but I would expect that any attempt to withdraw E2.500 out of my account, at twenty to five in the morning, should immediately send alarm bells clanging and be flagged as a very suspicious transaction, prompting a phone call to both me, on my mobile, and the trader to verify the transaction.

For the same amount to be taken out again 31 minutes later defies belief, as for the last E2,500, a further 20 minutes later, what can you say, and the bank are trying to say that you were negligent.

Not being used to spending that type of money on a night out, I can only assume that it was a casino or some sort of lapdancing club or that the person involved was engaged in something illegal, for such a bill, in such a short period of time, to be run up. Or else you had taken leave of your senses. I would assume that the place that the money was withdrawn from has CCTV which should show who used the card at those times. Otherwise either they or the bank should shoulder the loss.


Murt
 

Perplexed

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988
This looks a bit typical of the pattern for cleaning out someones a/c. Though these patterns are normally on ATM's over the weekend, taking out the max daily amount.

Someone had to have your pin though & your card or it wouldn't have worked. It was not from an ATM obviously as they don't give out those amounts.

Did you use your card in this nightclub yourself ? What was your own first transaction amount ?

Were all the transactions following in the same location? Were any friends with you who might possibly have done this ?

How soon after did you notice & inform your Cr Card company ?

Sorry for all the questions but I'm trying to get my head around this. I find it incredible that this happened & it's an awful situation for you. I work in banking & I like to be aware of scams so's I can warn customers what to look out for.

With any fraud in Ireland first thing we have to do is tell people to notify the guards. Perhaps they have some way of contacting the authorities in Brussels. There is a company called ECC www.eccdublin.ie which deals with consumer issues in other EU countries. It might be worth your while to contact them.

There have been situations where people have claimed fraud on their cards & then when we get footage of the CCTV's it turns out to be either flatmates, family members & in one case it was the mistress of the man in question paying a very early morning visit to the ATM with his Cr Card.

I think this might well have rung alarm bells if it happened in the daytime. Not making excuses but I'm sure that in the middle of the night there would only be a skeleton staff on to deal with emergencies.
 

angrylad

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73
To answer some of the questions;

Like Murt10 I would never use my credit card for purchases over E1000 for the house or holiday but it would be very much so during the day and never at night time.

My main problem is that I do not remember entering in my pin number at all and the bank have been citing negligence on my behalf (this is why I asked in one of my previous posts about overriding the pin)- while I have to admit that if I dont remember using the card the only scenario that mkes sense is that someine in the bar saw me entering my details and then held on to my card and attemepted all these transactions.

Dont get me wrong MUrt10 I would never spend that type of money on a night out (wish I could afford it) problem is that this happened in Brussels.

I tried to contact thre Garda Fruad Squad and the European Consumer Agency and both advised that they would call me back - I'm still waiting!

The bank have admitted the fraud but they do not even follow up on the bar they say its not up to them. I think it is there mighter than thou attitude that has been expressed is really annoying to me and I advised that I will pursue this to the end. I suppose i'm throwing it out there to get some feedback from other people.

Perplexed to answer your questions;

As above I do not remember using the card in this bar (I had had a few drinks over the night but was not falling all over the place, have often been in a lot worse states - that reads very badly but want to put you in the picture)

All the transactions were from the bar - they must have taken my wallet because I only noticed this when I got up the next morning and discovered that my cards were not in there usual places - didn't think much of it and then mentioned to a mate later and he advised to ring the bank and check just in case so I did and that's when I was advised that the card was used so I cancelled it and really did not think anymore of this as I knew that I didnt have my pin on me etc

None of my mates were with me I was looking for them - this is how I ended up in this place. So no none of my mates could of or I would expect would of done this. No chance of it being a mistress or anything like that either as I am single.

Agreed about the banks systems - do you think that this is the avenue that I should pursue??

I am going to try and contact the gardai and the Consumer agency tomorrow again.

Thanks
 

MugsGame

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2,506
angrylad, I'm slightly confused about one detail. You say you were probably in the bar where the fraud occurred, but your friends weren't in that bar. What did you do in that bar? How did you pay for it? Were you in that bar long enough for someone to take and replace your wallet?

There is no known way (currently) for someone to by-pass the PIN on the card. Assuming BoI are right, and the transactions were verified by PIN, someone else must know your PIN.

Did you use your card with PIN anywhere else that night? They might have had a camera watching the keypad. Alternatively, they could have had a doctored terminal that recorded your keystrokes or altered transaction amounts. Shell petrol stations in the UK had an inside job like this back in May where they had to suspend all chip and pin transactions due to wide-spread fraud. This other story from the UK is also interesting.

The other problem is how they had time to remove your wallet/card and bring it to an accomplice in the bar where the fraudulent transactions were processed. Did anyone have time to do that? It's also possible that a terminal in an establishment where you did use your card pretended to be a terminal in the other bar. This would require less access to your card. A final (but unlikely) possibility is that they cloned your card, chip and all. They would still need your PIN to use it, but it would give them plenty of time to perform the fraudulent transactions.


In terms of moving forward with a complaint against the bank, you need to escalate with customer care, and exhaust the bank's internal complaints procedures. Though from what you say about contacting the CEO, you may already have done this. Then you can go to the FS Ombudsman as Rainyday suggests. Legal action is also a possibility -- Ross Anderson has acted as an expert witness in banking card fraud cases in the UK. You should also pursue a criminal complaint against the bar whose merchant account the fraudulent transactions were processed through. As it's abroad, I don't know how much help the Guards can be.
 

Perplexed

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Messages
988
Angrylad,

Thanks for being so honest. As far as I'm aware the only country that will actually over-ride a pin & accept a signature is Ireland.

Also to the best of my knowledge if the pin was used, it's your responsibility. I think it's in the T & C's somewhere. One of the staff in that bar must be aiding & abetting though. Who would spend those amounts in a bar normally ? A staff member had to produce the terminal & pay out the money.. The owners should be made aware of the situation otherwise I'm sure it'll happen to someone else, if it hasn't already.

Now that we're all part of Europe, surely there is some way in which our guards can contact & liase with the police in other countries.

Good luck, whatever happens. It's a nasty situation to be in & a major warning to the rest of us to be careful with our cards & pins.
 

MugsGame

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2,506
the only country that will actually over-ride a pin & accept a signature is Ireland.
Any merchant with chip and pin (in Ireland or abroad) can accept a signature instead of a PIN -- but this is risky for them as the they will be responsible for any fraud.

if the pin was used, it's your responsibility. I think it's in the T & C's somewhere.
Yes, that's the bank's line. But if you can prove the bank's systems are faulty, a court might decide such T&Cs are unfair and unreasonable. I think this has already happened in the UK with ATM fraud cases.
 

Amygdala

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84
Angrylad, I too am a little confused. What was actually purchased or was it cash withdrawls? If the transaction was to cover a purchase of an item or service then the merchant should be able/unable to furnish the receipt to prove the exchange (unless the management are involved). Also their sales should also balance with their cash and cc receipts for that night.
 

Cashstrapped

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Messages
275
We had something similar happen with one of our work colleagues who had used the Chip & Pin at the Airport while travelling, however after a number of continuous transactions similar to what you outline it did raise alarm bells because our Creditcard Company(AIB) flagged it with us and asked us to make contact with this person to verify the transactions and they put a temporary stop on his card until it was verified, it did turn out to be fraud. They believe the only way it could have happened was that while purchasing at the airport he was seen entering his pin by the person assisting him in the transaction. They then used his number which had appeared on the transaction list (thing that comes from the machine) and manually entered it and used the Pin number they had seen him enter to put through transactions (inside job) this sounds very much like what has happened to you. It would seem to me that if one bank has such a system in place a bank as big as BOI should have something similar you should def. check that one out, (could be someone wasn't doing their job that night and your paying the price).

Just another few things that came to mind:

What is the limit on your Credit Card? Were these transactions still being processed even though it had gone over your Credit Limit, it would seem to me that BOI should be picking up the tab for anything over your limit then if it was their system that let you down and didn't protect you by allowing these amounts to be withdrawn without their approval, god knows there's many a time someone gets refused standing in a supermarket queue trying to pay for something ten euro over their approved limit.

Also it may be worth a call to the Police in Brussels to see if any others have logged a complaint about the same bar and then you might have some chance of making a claim against this establishment as I'm sure they have plenty of Insurance to cover against Employee fraud.

Then the real far out ones, I suppose there's no chance you have any insurance cover that covers fraudlent transactions on your card which includes cash withdrawals etc. The banks usually offer this when you first get your creditcard I know mine is about 16euro a year and covers for all fraudlent use and as you said above the bank are not disputing the fraud their just playing the blame game by putting it back on you, saves them 8k i suppose.

I personally wouldn't let this lie, hope the establishment was lets say one we'd all go to on a weekend night out and not one you only hit when your on a lads weekend or I think you may have a fight on your hands!

Good luck!
 

Perplexed

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Messages
988
Any country may be able to overide the pin but to the best of my knowledge very few merchants in other countries do. The reason being as you say that they are then responsible if there is a fraud. Irish merchants will generally only do it if they know the customer.

From the list of transactions it looks like the Cr Card limit wasn't exceeded as the last amount allowed was €250 & no more.

SPC has a point as most places do recycle their CCTV tapes, so a request to hold one should be put in asap.

I hope something can be done as this is awful. Some member of the staff of that bar has to be involved.
 

triplex

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Messages
134
I noticed that businesses keep one copy of the receipt - on this receipt is your full credit card number and the expiry date. You get the receipt with some of digits on your card blocked out. Once a salesperson knows this, all they have to do is watch you enter your pin number - there could even be a camera over your shoulder recording your entry..

and the rest is easy..


Go to the financial ombudsman - and get the name of everyperson in BOI you've been dealing with...
 

paddyodoors

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Messages
293
Hi Angrylad

Nightmare situation and one which will lead me to lower my CC limit!!

The motive behind Chip and Pin was to protect merchants from CC fraud - the onus, prior to this, was on them - if they could not prove that the card was used (i.e. signed receipt) then the cash was debited from their account. So in this repect the banks have not changed their stance - it is just the consumer who gets hit now.

Still that said I cannot believe that this pattern of withdrawals and at this time should not have frozen the account earlier - a €250 tester then 2x 2500 within 60 minutes?

Do you know for sure it was cash withdrawals?
IF CASH, I think the amount of cash available in a till would have been an issue. I used to work in a club and even on xmas eve etc - you would be struggling to have more than 8k in one till (there were 6 bars with 2 tills each), so cleaning it out would surely raise eyebrows when cashing up....and generally staff are assigned to the same till.

If something was actually purchased - then it may be possible to go through the chargeback route. - Get on to your credit card provider and state that even though goods were paid for - you never received them.... I believe that the merchant still has responsibility to provide a service.

I think the Merchant definately has to have some responsibility here unless it was a casino?

Good luck with this - Only sorry I havent any solution, keep us updated

Paddy
 
P

polo9n

Guest
yes this is scandalous with all this going on.even so called SAFE Chip and Pin proven to be nothing but a saftey net for the bankers!!!

i would recommend folks out there to cover their hand when keying in any pin number that include Chip and Pin or ATM withdrawal.
personally i would never go near the online banking as people probably seen and heard about Bank leaking customer card details leading to fraud use of the card!
 

DirtyH2O

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Messages
238
I had money taken of my credit card at a foreign ATM or other type of cash terminal allegedly using my PIN and when I contacted BOI they said I must have disclosed my PIN somehow. I hadn't used the card in the same country before so I asked they investigate where the transactions happened, CCTV records etc. They refused and sent me a letter asserting that I must have disclosed the PIN as it is impossible to get money without it. Afterwards my brother used his ATM card without needing his PIN over the counter of a small agency\bank.
It has led me to conclude that credit cards are about as secure as cash. There were some articles about Chip & Pin being very much in favour of banks, especially in disputes as it moves the burden of responsibility heavily towards the customer.

http://www.phantomwithdrawals.com/
 
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