Financial fraud: Plastic is vulnerable -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Financial fraud: Plastic is vulnerable

Scott Tomlinson Scott Tomlinson
Capt. Craig Dodd Capt. Craig Dodd

The rash of bank card frauds in Albany continues to grow, with more people and businesses discovering everyday they have been victimized.

Someone hacked into the computer systems of several Albany businesses, and stole debit and credit card numbers of their customers.

Investigators now have confirmed that someone planted a Trojan into the credit card system at several Albany businesses, including Austin's Fire Grill and Newman's Bar and Grill, stealing card information from customers.

"Basically planted something there, that is activated at times, when certain things are done within the computer system, it activates the Trojan and then the Trojan begins to siphon the information," said Dougherty Co. Sheriff's Captain Craig Dodd.  

The United States Secret Service has taken over the Investigation, because it appears the Trojan could have been planted in several businesses from a foreign nation. 

Flint Community Bank says new card protection technology has crooks active. "The criminals are trying their best to take advantage of the strip, the magnetic strip, while they can.  Because they realize the chip technology will be harder to crack," said Flint Community Bank President Scott Tomlinson.   

The number of card fraud victims in the Albany area is estimated to be several dozens, including businesses, banks, and consumers, but they can't all be pinpointed where the theft occurred.

"There are so many different ways that people can obtain your information. So many devices, so many different ways there is really no way we can run those all down," Tomlinson said.  

Newman's and Austin's has put in several firewalls to protect their computers.  Bank officials and law enforcement say there is little you can do to prevent becoming a victim of card fraud, but check your bank statements daily and contact your bank if you are attacked.   

The card fraud situation has grown so serious, Flint Community Bank has started a task force to enhance security to protect customers. 

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