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Always check your account activity...

Always check your account activity…

(11 July 2011 – Australia) Thousands of Australian bank card details have been auctioned off by global organised gangs on underground websites for just 66c. The criminals are using card-skimming devices and hacking into databases to access personal information.

Many victims do not notice the activity on their bank statements for days or even weeks because their cards are not lost or stolen, allowing the gangs to get away with thousands at a time.

The cloned card can only be frozen once the victim reports it to the bank.

Criminals who bid the highest are then able to embed the private information - using a $150 machine freely available in Victoria - on to blank bank cards or gift cards with a black 'tracking strip' and use them to steal money from your bank account.

This year, three Malaysian 'mules' were imprisoned after obtaining almost 800 replica bank cards within one day of arriving in Melbourne.

In less than three weeks they had fraudulently obtained almost $100,000 from Australian account holders.

Victoria Police obtained CCTV footage of the gang standing at ATM machines around the CBD and outer suburbs for up to an hour at a time, using card after card to withdraw cash.

Police believe the small-time gangs are given the illegal cards for free and pass on the money to Australian-based organised gangs, with individuals earning a percentage of the rip-offs.

The illegal activity is popular with foreigners, brimming with confidence that they will not be recognised by Australian authorities before fleeing back overseas.
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