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New Low Tech Credit Card Theft on the Rise in Florida

Credit card theft/fraud is a crime that is increasing throughout Jacksonville, Florida and the entire country. As people become more proficient with computers and the Internet, those with criminal intentions are finding ways to misappropriate credit card numbers and other financial accounts. As high tech credit card thefts is increasing, so are more low tech attempts to commit credit card theft.

For instance, one type of credit card theft called shaving is becoming increasingly popular. This type of credit card theft involves a thief trying different combinations of 16 digit numbers until he/she finds one that matches a valid credit card account. The match can be verified by initiating a credit card purchase on the Internet or over the phone. Once the thief finds a valid credit card number, he/she will obtain an old, expired credit card and shave off the numbers. The new, valid numbers are then glued on to the card. The thief then damages the magnetic strip on the credit card so the store clerk has to manually enter the new credit card numbers into the credit card machine, and the purchase goes through.

This is not the smoothest way to commit credit card theft, but it is apparently working, particularly in stores that have a high volume of customers with young store clerks who do not take the time to inspect a credit card when it is presented. Surely, most of us could identify one of these altered cards if we took the time to look at it, but consider that many store clerks do not pay attention to a credit card other than to briefly determine whether it has a signature.

The danger to victims of this type of credit card theft crime is that a victim may not know his/her credit card account has been accessed until weeks or months after the crime because his/her credit cards are safely in a wallet or purse. This is why it is very important for people to carefully review the monthly credit card statement to see if there are any unauthorized charges. It is also important for store clerks to inspect credit cards before completing the transaction, particularly when the magnetic strip is not working and the card cannot be scanned.