Mobile Eftpos scams

Mobile Eftpos scams - Be aware!

We have just been made aware of an incoming trend of mobile EFTPOS machines being scammed at checkout.

The scam operates in the following manner.

  1. The retailer punches in the relevant product details and item(s) costs and hands the EFTPOS machine to the ‘customer/offender’.
  2. The offender/scammer then enters their card fully into the machine registering that the card has been entered.
  3. It would appear that the offender (or an accomplice working with them) will cause a distraction, enabling the offender/scammer to cancel the correct total and then enter a single digit 1 (ie 1 cent or similar).
  4. They add their PIN as requested by the machine and then press ‘enter’.
  5. This will cause the EFTPOS machine to ‘beep’ and will show ‘transaction approved’.
  6. This message is often all that the retailer looks for and often the actual value of the transaction is not checked.

The result will be that the actual total charged against the card will be $0.01 or similar instead of the correct value of the items.

Although it would appear that the card owner's details will be known, and can be identified, it is likely that a number of these types of transactions will not be noticed by the retailer.

It also opens up the opportunity for fraudulent cards to be used in a similar manner enabling the scammer to use the card to steal a large amount of property without activating security protocols on the cards or exceeding the limits of the cards.

Please be vigilant when using these hand-held, mobile units.

There is some good advice on preventing this, and similar types of scams recently seen in Australia, on the following website.