Simple security protocol followed by a bank helped avert two more cases in a global credit/debit card cloning scam that has hit several Mumbaiites in the past few months.
In the first case, Amar Gala, 31, from Kalachowkie almost lost Rs. 27,725, but his bank contacted him in the nick of time. “At around 11.56pm on November 26, I received a text from my bank stating my debit card was used in Texas for Rs. 27,725. Before I could do anything my bank called me to check if I had made any transaction at El Paso in Texas. I told them I was in the city,” said Gala.
The bank told him they would discontinue his card and issue a new one, as they suspected a fraud.
“They just asked me for proof that I wasn’t in the US. I gave them a photocopy of my passport and other details to prove I was not in the city when ‘my card’ was used in Texas. After they verified my claims, they temporarily credited the money to my account as investigations are still underway,” said Gala. He then approached the Kalachowkie police station.
In the second incident where the bank ensured its customer was not victimised, a woman whose card was fraudulently used to pay at a hotel was alerted by her bank, which then blocked the transaction.
In the first week of January, Mala Punjabi, 60, got a call from her bank checking if she was using her debit card to pay at a restaurant in the city. When she refused, the bank told her they suspected a fraud and had not allowed the transaction.
“Thankfully, I did not lose any money. They told me there was a lock system on my card, because of which the transaction didn’t go through. They blocked my card and asked me to me to get a new one to be safe, and advised me to be careful in the future,” said the resident of Veera Desai Road in Andheri (West).