Card criminals in Russia empty Plymouth man's bank account
A RETIRED man found he was hundreds of pounds out of pocket after falling victim to a 'card cloning' scam.
Anthony Vandyk tried to withdraw money from a cash machine at Tesco in Transit Way, Honicknowle, last week.
The 64-year-old was told he had "insufficient funds" and immediately contacted his local branch of NatWest bank.
He said: "I left my granddaughter at Tesco and got on the bus down to the bank to get a statement so I could find out what was happening.
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"I realised that whereas I was £89 in the black I was now £269 in the red.
"I had done nothing, my last transaction was £30 the previous day.
"So I came home and got on to the bank helpline and they checked the records."
Mr Vandyk, who lives in Honicknowle, was told his card details had been "cloned" and sent to Russia – where a series of transactions were made using his money.
He said: "The lady told me it was Russia, she said 'Have you been there?' and I said 'No I haven't been there. I haven't left the country for 35 years.
"I was literally gobsmacked. I have never had anything like this happen to me before.
"They have blocked my card and issued me with a new one; they are doing everything imaginable. They say I will still get the money back, which is a relief.
"The machine looked fine. I do sometimes look at a cash machine and I do feel around so if anything feels off or anything like that, but lately everything seems fine with them. I want to alert people to this. They need to be more vigilant. Use the inside of banks and building societies where you can be more secure."
A spokeswoman for NatWest said: "We would strongly recommend that people keep their card and PIN details safe, that they are sensible when using the internet and also read their statements regularly."
A spokesman for the UK Cards Association added: "Card cloning is where information from the card, such as the 16-digit number on the front, is electronically captured and then used to make a copy of the card's magnetic stripe for fraudulent use.
"In the UK and other countries, where 'chip and PIN' has been implemented, the cards contain other secret cryptographic information embedded in the chip that criminals are unable to copy to create a full working clone of the card.
"There are some countries, though, that will process transactions based on the magnetic stripe on the rear of the card which doesn't have the same high levels of data protection afforded by the chip.
"However, in the majority of instances where a transaction takes place with real time authorisation, the security information on a cloned magnetic stripe would not match that on card issuer's system, and the transaction is declined.
"A small minority of transactions in some locations around the globe do not have this real time authorisation and so, in these rare occasions, the information isn't checked and the transaction may proceed.
"It should be pointed out, though, that if anyone is the innocent victim of fraud then their bank will repay the money that has been defrauded from their account."