Gardai arrest one and raid six homes over credit card scam

The move is a bid to combat the growing problem of ‘Card Not Present’ (CNP) fraud

Gardai have made one arrest and raided homes in Dublin in a blitz into debit and credit card fraud.

Officers from the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau have teamed up with those in the retail industry in a bid to combat the growing problem of ‘Card Not Present’ (CNP) fraud.

The scam happens when goods are purchased online or over the 'phone - and no payment card is physically handed over to the seller.

Retailers are being targeted by CNP fraud but consumers are also vulnerable because the con usually involves the use of payment card details that have been compromised through skimming, hacking, email phishing, telephone solicitations or other unlawful methods.

The compromised payment card details are then used to make purchases online or by 'phone.

In 2015, known card fraud totalled €29.6 million in Ireland - with 70% of this(almost €21million) happening when the con artists nicked card details.

In the first half of 2016, €20.8million card fraud was detected in Ireland, 78% of which was due to CNP scams.

The Garda/Retail Excellence Ireland collaboration takes place as part of a broader Europol campaign this month aimed at combating online fraud that arises from compromised card data.

Europol E-Commerce Action Week took place from June 6 to 16 and saw officers in 23 countries deployed to ‘hotspots’ and take action based on intelligence and investigations.

As part of the Europol effort here officers targeted a number of homes in the Dublin area suspected to be involved in CNP fraud. As a result of the operation:

· 10 search warrants were applied for on foot of information provided by the Gardaí’s private sector partners;

· Six searches of residential properties were carried out in Tallaght, Drimnagh, Tyrellstown and Balbriggan;

· 1 person was arrested and detained at Balbriggan Garda Station under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1994;

· Details of over 100 compromised US issued payment cards were recovered.

Detective Garda Jim O’Meara of the GNECB, said: "We are definitely witnessing a sharp rise in the level of CNP fraud activity in the past 18 months and we would attribute it to the uplift in the economy and a related rise in online shopping.

"This results in greater numbers of consumers being vulnerable to having their payment card details compromised, which are then sold on the darkweb where they can be accessed by criminals who go on to fraud retailers either online, over the phone, or even through mail order transactions."

Read other news on the city site of Dublin.

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