Walmart Lets Alleged Credit Card Thief Try 9 Different Cards

You don’t have to steal someone’s actual credit card to defraud them: all you need is their card number and a magnetic-encoding machine. Then you can take your new cloned card shopping, and hope that the victim hasn’t shut down their account yet. Last month in Virginia, a Walmart store let a customer try nine different credit cards before his transaction was approved. Nine?

This card-shuffling incident happened in mid-April, and local news station WTVR made it public earlier this week, but Credit.com brought it to our attention today. It’s hard to picture eight bogus transactions going through without raising some kind of flags in the system: plenty of Americans might be struggling with credit and have a stack of maxed-out cards, but eight seems like an excessively high stack. The shopper’s companion had better luck with his own stack of cloned cards: he only had to try five cards before finding one that worked.

According to police, the shoppers then took the cards that had worked at Walmart over to a nearby GameStop store and made purchases there. The pair was caught on surveillance cameras, and police have released their photos.

With the right equipment, it’s about as easy to make a duplicate credit card as it is to burn a few tunes on a CD. That’s part of why Walmart will start requiring 3-digit CVV codes during credit card transactions for now: that information generally isn’t part of the information that fraudsters download when they buy a stolen card number online.

Police: Walmart rejects man’s eight credit cards, accepts ninth – it was stolen [WTVR] (via Credit.com)

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  1. CommonC3nts says:

    As long as the cards had names that matched the ID of the person using them, then walmart was correct in letting them try as many as they wanted.
    If after like 3 declined cards, if walmart did not ask to see ID then they did mess up big time.

    • Depends on how sophisticated the device he used to print them was.

    • Saber says:

      If they were skimmed “giftcards” though (VISA/MC/Amex cards with no name, just “a gift” that you can buy/load in most stores) linked to peoples’ accounts, they wouldn’t have to show ID whatsoever. Sadly, they’re also the hardest to trace, which is why so many skimmers use them. :(

  2. Psylent1 says:

    I’ve had legitimate customers use more than that. Some of them have a stack of credit cards thicker than a poker deck.