Wow! I just cannot believe the scam that was almost pulled on my husband! This morning when he woke up, Super G. checked his online bank account to make sure that our electric and phone bill payments went through. When I heard him cursing out the computer at five o’clock in the stinkin’ morning, I figured it was time to get up and see what was going on. There was a mysterious $400 pending transaction in his account. All it said Was “VISA – Walmart”, which in itself is strange because whenever we use our card at Walmart it usually has the location and string of numbers in the statement details. What’s even weirder is the fact that all day yesterday hubby and I were building a chicken coop pen and running around to various feed mills and lumber stores looking for 4 foot tall chicken wire – you can’t imagine how hard it was to find 4 foot – not three foot – the point is, we were nowhere near a Walmart yesterday.
Odd? This is the point in time when I start racking my brain trying to make sure I hadn’t “forgotten” about a too-good-to-pass-up-deal I had found online, or a bill I paid but forget to tell hubby about. Nope, after running through all possible scenarios in about 5 seconds flat, I KNEW I hadn’t withdrawn or paid $400 to anyone, let alone Walmart. So strange!
Super G. said he would stop at the bank during lunch (he’s pouring and spreading a few ton of concrete on a job today) to see if they knew what was going on. Well it’s almost 2pm and he just called me to tell me the scoop. I am shocked! Apparently the bank was already on top of things (way to go PNC!) and had filed a dispute for him and started fraud proceedings. What alerted them was the fact that we were using his debit card to buy that four feet tall/150 foot long roll of chicken wire fence we finally found, at the same time as the $400 transaction was taking place in Tyler, PA. Where the heck is that at?
Apparently there have been a ton of complaints and similar stories over the past few days from the surrounding small towns in our area. The explanation? Scammers have been, and continue to get away with, using handheld electronic devices that can automatically scan the magnetic strips on your bank, credit and debit cards, I believe it’s called “Skimming”. O.M.G. that is so scary! They think that this particular instance is either a scam that carnival persons may be doing, or someone at the carnivals in our area. Since our annual fair was less than a month ago, this makes perfect sense. It also saddens me to think that one of the carnival workers could be doing this.
The moral of the story is to be ever more vigilant about your cards! I’ve even read of clerks, waitresses and other retail workers scamming people out of their information using these portable “skimming” devices! Be careful people!