Why the new scam hitting restaurants is worrying

Why the new scam hitting restaurants is worrying

The payment terminal scam emerged in Cannes, southern France, but could spread across borders. If it’s not already…

For some time now, French restaurateurs and their customers have been victims of a formidable scam. Yesterday, we reported that in Cannes, several establishments had notified anomalies in their turnover. Clearly, merchants have seen revenues that are far too low compared to their estimates. The reason ? Scammers have discreetly stolen their payment terminals, replacing them with hacked devices.

A duo robbery

the skimming is a fraudulent practice based on the hacking and cloning of bank cards. For the scammers, the objective of this scam is to recover the bank details and the 4-digit personal code of the victim. Generally, the place of attack is limited to ATMs, but more recently, criminals have updated and now use payment terminals (POS). The heart of the scam therefore rests on a skimmer, camouflaged in the scammer’s payment terminal. As it is integrated into the TPE, the skimmer allows the magnetic stripe of the payer’s bank card to be read.

Generally, criminals work in pairs and act at the checkout when paying by card. The first simulates a payment by card, the second takes care of exchanging the merchant’s payment terminal (TPE) with an identical copy. Then, the two friends just have to wait for a maximum of payments to be made to receive the money or come back to get the coveted data via Bluetooth, from their phone.

For the moment, the French police do not yet know the number of victims, nor the amount of all the sums stolen. As a reminder, this scam technique was detected in 2013. Since then, it has been modernized and its new version allows payment money to be sent directly to a fraudulent account. The old one was limited to recording payer data. The scammers then had to create fake cards associated with the stolen bank accounts and empty them. And, despite its age, this fraud is still relevant.

Stolen data and cloned cards

Accomplices, based abroad, then receive these bank details and produce “Yes Cards”. These fraudulent smart cards always answer “yes” when asked for money, regardless of the secret code entered. Once in possession of this illegal card, it is therefore possible to impersonate the holder of any bank account. Clearly, it is an illicit bank card that simulates the data of a real bank card. Physically, they look almost perfectly like regular cards.

Hijack and identify the scam

The technique was developed in the 2000s and to avoid being unmasked, scammers only use these cloned cards on vending machines. Yes Cards can be used worldwide.

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