What do I do if I know what business stole my credit card?
December 3, 2016 4:55 PM   Subscribe

In the last month or so I've had my credit card info stolen three times. First one card, then another I rarely use from a different credit company, then the same (reissued with a new number) card as the first time again about a month later. I think I know where it's happening. What do I do?

Looking back through transactions the only place I've used all three card numbers is a local grocery store. I'm 99% sure this is where the info is being stolen from, though I have no idea by who or how. Each time the credit card company in question has caught the attempted fraud immediately (if I understand the credit card reps it has been in-person attempts with a cloned card).

I'm glad the credit card companies have been catching the fraud, but when I asked what I should do since I'm pretty sure I know where this is happening they didn't really give me any useful advice. They say they do their own investigation and don't take any input from me. Other than (obviously) no longer using my card at the store in question, should I do anything? Do I call the cops? The manager of the store? A company higher-up? (It's a chain grocery store.)

Side note: I assume it's possible this is from a hack either of my info or of the store. I think it's unlikely I was hacked on my end, since I don't use the second card for anything online.
posted by Wretch729 to Work & Money (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You could certainly try the corporate customer service for the store. You could also try the local news.

Chances are good they already know and internal wheels are turning, though, either at your bank or the store or the FBI.
posted by Lyn Never at 5:02 PM on December 3, 2016

You can report it to your local police - especially if you think it's a specific store near you, there could be multiple people in a small area are experiencing this and they will be able to put the reports together.
posted by the agents of KAOS at 5:04 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]

Contact everyone, though I'd be wary of the manager.
posted by FallowKing at 5:06 PM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]

The theft could be happening any number of ways, as described here. As you can see, in most cases, you're unlikely to find out how it happened.

It's probably not the store itself stealing your card, so while I wouldn't use a card there anymore, I also wouldn't give them the stinkeye about it. I had a store like that, where my card would get stolen regularly, but I was 99% sure the owners weren't doing it, so I just started using cash there.
posted by ernielundquist at 5:23 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]

I've had cards stolen that I never even used. Cancel it and move on.
posted by Joe Chip at 6:45 PM on December 3, 2016

Yes, definitely talk to the police. I'm sure you're not the only one this has happened to. Also the local news.
posted by AFABulous at 7:00 PM on December 3, 2016

I would leave this to Visa and Mastercard to deal with. They have the god's eye view of fraud and will see if this store is a hotspot.
posted by zippy at 8:07 PM on December 3, 2016 [6 favorites]

I had this happen with a Chevron gas card. It was 10 years ago so the card company was not on top of the charges in real time as they are now. They were buying beer in the food mart to the tune of $600 over a weekend. I met with the owner and we went over the signed credit receipts. It was clearly being done with the help of an employee. The owner took the matter to the police and I stopped going to that gas station.

I would stop going to that store, but if that is a major inconvenience for you, I would contact the owner to discuss their employee problem. If you don't get the response you want from the owner I would plaster their fraud problem on Yelp, NextDoor, and any other social media site that you use.
posted by cairnoflore at 9:40 PM on December 3, 2016

If you decide to contact the store, don't contact anyone working in that particular branch: go one step up the corporate ladder. My guess is that it's someone inside the store doing this, and it could be one or more people up to and including the store manager, so don't call the store manager and alert him, go right over his head.
posted by easily confused at 5:10 AM on December 4, 2016 [2 favorites]

Odds are you're not the only person this has happened to. One possibility is that someone has put skimmers in the store (skimmers are stating to pop up on retail debit card terminals.) You need to notify the store's corporate office that you've had cards compromised, and that you suspect it was at their store. Don't state it as gospel, don't be accusing or stating it as fact, but let them know you're concerned that it's happened there. As I said, odds are you aren't the only person who is the victim of this card fraud, and if corporate is hearing reports they will want to know if something is going on in their stores.
posted by azpenguin at 7:50 AM on December 4, 2016

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