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Motorists stung in card scam

23 April 2007

  • Accounts drained by card skimming scam
  • £30m illegally removed last year
  • May be link to insurgency in Sri Lanka

Motorists have had their credit cards 'skimmed' at many UK petrol stations

Motorists have lost millions of pounds in a card 'skimming' scam at UK petrol stations.

The theft involves cloning motorists' cards and stealing the pin numbers while customers are paying for fuel. Around 200 petrol stations across the UK are thought to be involved.

The BBC says Police are investigating complains made in Bristol, Bury St Edmunds, Edinburgh, Hull, Leeds, Norwich, Nottingham and Peterborough.

Small amounts of cash are regularly taken out of affected accounts over a period of weeks, so motorists may not have noticed that they have been targeted.

According to Reuters, the UK payments association (APACS) estimates that £30m has been illegally drained from accounts last year.

The Sri Lankan government claims that rebel group the Tamil Tigers is to blame for the fraud. While much of the theft is carried out in the Far East and India, police say there is not yet any definite link to Sri Lanka.

Make sure you insert your chip-and-pin card yourself, and try to make sure no-one can see you inputting your pin number.

Has your card been skimmed at a petrol station?
Have you been affected by this kind of theft? Email us by clicking here to tell us your story.

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