How To Buy Gift Cards With Stolen Credit Card
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If your credit card is stolen in the United States, the Fair Credit Billing Act limits the liability of cardholders to $50, regardless of the amount charged by an unauthorized user. In today's world of electronic fraud, if just the credit card account number itself is stolen and the theft is reported before any charges are made, federal law guarantees that the cardholder has a zero liability to the issuer.
Generally speaking, gift card fraud is any scam or act of fraud revolving around the reception or provision of prepaid gift cards. There are two main forms of gift card fraud: gift card payment fraud and outright gift card theft.
The fraudster claims you owe money, and that your bank account will be frozen for an investigation. They instruct you to buy an Amazon or Apple gift card and pay off the amount owed using the card balance to avoid getting arrested or suffering other consequences.
If anyone ever instructs you to pay with a gift card specifically, they are a scammer. Period. These scams should be reported immediately to the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov. This may seem obvious to some, but it works surprisingly often.
Older people are more susceptible to these scams, according to FTC data. Of Americans aged 50-59, 19% of fraud reports involved gift cards or reloadable cards. For Americans aged 80 and up, that number jumps to 30% of all fraud reports.
As we mentioned, there are many different methods of leveraging gift cards for fraudulent purposes. Some are simply variations on other types of card-not-present fraud, while others are specific to gift cards. A few of the more common schemes involve using:
Fraudsters buy gift cards online using stolen credit card information, then turn around and resell the cards for cash. They do this because, if the owner of the stolen data discovers the illegitimate purchase, the gift card could be canceled. Knowing this, the fraudster wants to convert the card for cash or merchandise quickly.
Fraudsters can gain access to multiple connected accounts by hacking in and commandeering one account held by a legitimate cardholder. The fraudster is able to access a bank or online shopping account, for instance. Then they convert as much money as they can siphon off into untraceable gift cards to sell or make purchases as quickly as possible.
The goal of a gift card scammer is to trick you into signing over a gift card balance. The specific tactics they use can vary based on the situation, though. Here are a few of the most common gift card schemes at work right now:
Someone from the IRS or the Social Security Administration is telling you that you owe money. A warrant is about to be issued for your arrest, but you can stop it by making a one-time payment via a gift card.
Another thing you could do to help fight back against any future instances of gift card fraud is to contact your state attorney general to report the case. While the FTC is the main governing body with regard to fraud, individual cases may become parcel to larger class-action lawsuits or other legal proceedings that can prevent the victimization of others.
It takes more effort to convert 25 cards to cash, each valued at $20, than one gift card valued at $500. There are lower margins per card. Limiting value amounts may make your cards less enticing to fraudsters.
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For credit cards, once an authorization is received, you may notice a decrease in your available credit line. Your bank may hold this dollar amount from your credit line or available balance for a short period of time determined by the policy of your bank before your Transaction is fulfilled. For debit cards, your bank may pre-authorize a charge to your deposit or checking account and place a temporary hold on the funds before your Transaction is fulfilled. Regardless of whether you use a credit or debit card, your card will be charged only upon fulfillment of your Transaction. If your Transaction is cancelled, Starbucks will request an authorization reversal on your behalf. Reversal times may vary. We recommend contacting your bank or credit card company to learn about their authorization and authorization reversal policies.
You can reload your Starbucks Card in-store or, to make reloading your Starbucks Card easier, you can link a payment method to your Starbucks account (which you can access at ) and reload either manually online when you choose or set up auto-reload. With automatic reload, you simply set the reload date or the balance at which you want to reload your Starbucks Card and provide us with payment information. We will send you an email confirming the automatic reload Transaction terms and bill your credit card or debit card according to the schedule and amount you have selected. We will also send you an email after each reload to let you know your Starbucks Card has been reloaded. You can change your reload preferences at any time, but changes may take up to twenty-four (24) hours to go into effect.
The Starbucks eGift Card (also known as an \"eGift\") program allows you to purchase and send a virtual Starbucks Card via email, or via certain social media and messaging platforms. You may choose the design and dollar value (within certain limits) and complete your purchase using a credit card, debit card, or certain other electronic payment methods. You may choose when to have your eGift delivered the same day, provided that your form of payment is approved. You authorize us to charge your credit card, debit card or other chosen electronic payment method at the time you purchase your eGift regardless of the date you choose for delivery.
We will not accept any Starbucks Card, or will limit use of any Starbucks Card or Starbucks Card balance, if we reasonably believe that the use is unauthorized, fraudulent or otherwise unlawful, and we consider such action appropriate to limit our risk. Starbucks does not control who may sell preloaded Starbucks Cards, nor can we control the price or preloaded denominations offered by independent sellers. Consequently, Starbucks has no liability to you for any third-party fraud or unlawful activity associated with any Starbucks Card balance. If Starbucks discovers any Starbucks Card or Starbucks Card balance was sourced or derived from fraud or other unlawful means, we may in our sole discretion, cancel all impacted Starbucks Cards and retain all related Starbucks Card balances without notice to you. We may use retained Starbucks Card balances to help offset our liability to card companies, networks and issuers of lost or stolen credit and debit cards used to purchase or load Starbucks Cards.
You should treat your Starbucks Card like cash and not disclose your Starbucks Card information to anyone. If your Starbucks Card or Starbucks Card information is lost or stolen, anyone who obtains possession of either may use your Card. You are responsible for all transactions on your Starbucks Card, including unauthorized transactions. However, if your Starbucks Card is lost, stolen or destroyed, your Starbucks Card can be replaced with the balance remaining on it at the time you contact us, but only if you have previously registered it with us.
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Police were notified March 23 that two Washington County residents had their credit cards stolen out of their cars. Shortly after noon, calls came in from Target stores in Oakdale, Stillwater and North St. Paul reporting that those stolen credit cards were used to buy $21,839 in Target gift cards.
Austin Police responded to a call on the evening of May 6 at the Chick-fil-A restaurant located at 503 W Martin Luther King Blvd. Employees told officers that a man, identified as 26-year-old David Ricketts, was using stolen credit cards to buy a large amount of gift cards.
According to court documents, Ricketts' wallet contained a driver's license and credit cards that did not match his name but had photos that matched his face. When Ricketts returned from the restroom, the officer again asked him what his name was. He responded David Ricketts, and when asked why he had ID for a different name in his wallet, he said he didn't know and it wasn't his. A total of five cards with the different name were found in Ricketts' wallet, police say.
After detaining Ricketts, the officer when into the restroom to see if he had tried to hide any evidence. In the report the officer states that he found 20 Chick-fil-A gift cards stuffed inside the toilet seat cover dispenser.
Employees at the restaurant told police that Ricketts entered the restaurant and asked for ten $100 gift cards. Following company policy, the restaurant manager had to approve by verifying the credit card matched the customer's photo identification. According to the report, Ricketts provided an Connecticu