Bank CEO Rips Walmart For Allowing ID Thieves To Spend $12K Without Anyone Noticing

How do ID thieves spend $12,000 in just a couple of hours at Walmart without anyone noticing? Quite easily, apparently. Which is why one CEO of a Texas-based bank is criticizing the nation’s largest retailer.

NBC Dallas/Fort Worth reports that scammers in the Fort Worth area went on a Walmart spending spree over the weekend with fake debit cards created using information stolen from data breaches at other retailers.

The CEO of Citizens National Bank of Texas says that he learned over the weekend that his fraud department had flagged $12,000 worth of Walmart purchases made in the area over the course of only a couple of hours.

“I just wish they would check ID just a little bit,” says the CEO. “If they would just be a little more responsible and check who they were doing business with. Ask for a driver’s license. What’s it take? Two seconds.”

These debit card transactions were presumably processed as credit cards since that doesn’t require the user to enter a PIN.

In response to the fraud, Citizens National is now requiring that any Walmart purchases over $49 be processed as a debit transaction with a PIN.

Of course, this still leaves open the opportunity for scammers to make multiple, smaller purchases. And as we recently learned, a resourceful ID thief might be able to glean enough information to change a victim’s PIN, giving them unfettered access to funds in the linked account.

For its part, Walmart is reminding everyone that customer privacy and security is “something we take very seriously… We want to make sure we’re doing everything from our end to prevent these fraudulent transactions from happening.”

The company says it is increasing the training for cashiers, though it might be hard for some of them to care very much about being trained by a company that is taking away their health insurance.