Police say credit card fraud is the most common form of identity theft. As technology advances, police say it's getting easier for criminals to obtain your credit and debit card information.
"There's no telling where they got my information and that's what's scary," says Lauren, a victim if identity theft. Credit card fraud: for Lauren Moore a nightmare that began when she noticed strange purchases on her online bank statement. "I just happened to look at it and I looked at my account 15 minutes after one of the transactions," she explains.
Those purchases were made while she was at work. Lauren says somehow someone illegally obtained her bank card number and produced a counterfeit card with her information. "The number had just been taken and somebody made a card out of it that wouldn't swipe and they went to the store and ran it as credit and used it out of my debit account," she says. Racking up a bill of more than $300.
They didn't stop there. Lauren says at the exact time she was reporting the crime to her bank, another transaction was being attempted. "No telling how many more times if I hadn't caught him," says Lauren.
|Fighting Back Against Identity Theft|
"It's becoming more common," explains Sergeant Keith Woodard from the Lubbock Police Department. He says more than 50% of the time victim's don't even bother filing a police report. "If you find something that's illegal make sure that you contact the police," he warns.
"When I was asking the bank what I needed to do I wish they would've said you need to file a police report, " says Lauren. To keep from being a victim Sergeant. Woodard says always take precaution when handling your credit or debit card information. "They just need to make sure they keep good records, shred everything that has their information on it and they need to be careful about who gets their information and why," explains Sergeant. Woodard.
"It could have ruined my credit, it's a scary thing," says Lauren. Thankfully her bank will reimburse her. Again, the perpetrator is still out there. That's why police say it's crucial to file a report if this happens to you. To prevent this type of fraud, Sergeant Woodard adds to never give your credit card information to just anyone over the phone or Internet.
If you're caught committing credit card fraud police say it's punishable with up to two years in state jail and a $10,0000 fine for each time you use the card.