Updated: Tuesday, 21 Aug 2012, 9:44 AM EDT
Published : Monday, 20 Aug 2012, 10:44 PM EDT
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) - Cyber criminals have hacked their way to Fort Wayne and are stealing customer debit card information from local businesses.
“They will steal your card number,” said Jeremy Vance, the Security Director of Star Financial Bank. “They will sell it to a financial gang in a different state. They'll take your card, reproduce your card, that's what we called a clone card. They'll start doing fraudulent transactions on your account, and they'll do a lot of them."
Vance said the charges can run between $200 and $500 which can quickly add up to thousands for the victim.
Criminals infiltrated the system at the Penn Station on Illinois Road. Penn Station president, Craig Dunaway, said the system has been upgraded and is safe for customers to use.
“We shut down the method of credit card processing at Penn Station with our point of sale system and said we're not going to process credit cards the way we're doing it until we get to the bottom of the situation,” Dunaway said.
Other local businesses may still be at risk, but Vance encourages people to still use their debit card and monitor their account closely.
“The payment system is still a very safe way to conduct payments, and you get the extra added benefit of being protected against fraudulent activity,” Vance said. “Even if it does occur, the financial institution will reimburse you."
Unlike using cash, which may never be replaced, banks typically reimburse fraud victims within 24-48 hours.
Ways to protect your debit card:
How to get your money back:
It's important to report any suspicious activity as soon as possible because that will limit any financial loss on your part.
Here's why: federal law doesn't protect debit cards the same way it does credit cards. If you notify the bank within two days of discovering your debit card was lost or stolen, your loss is limited to $50. After two days, that amount jumps to $500. And after 60 days of receiving the statement with the fraudulent charges, your loss may be unlimited. If you report a loss to your bank, most will be able to refund your money within 48 hours.
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