February 23, 2007
Reported by Vince Atkinson
We have all heard the warning "buyer beware," but with new tech savvy criminals on the loose, business owners have to be just as careful. The Better Business Bureau of Southwest Louisiana is sending out a stern warning.
Business at Trahan's Hardware Store in Lake Charles is going as usual, much as it has for the past 40 years. Nothing was out of the ordinary until recently. Trahan's Hardware employee Cary Thomas said, "I made the order, ran the credit card and everything was fine." In truth, Trahan's was a victim of the latest credit card scam.
Carmen Million with the Better Business Bureau of Southwest Louisiana knows how these new criminals think. Million said, "Their goal is to convince the business that this is a legitimate transaction, that they are actually going to purchase a large amount of merchandise." While the credit card numbers are often good, they may be stolen. After the order is placed over the phone, the merchants ship the products, but never receive the payment. Million said, "The merchandise usually ends up somewhere like Nigeria or Africa." Trahan's Hardware just happened to have fraud insurance, so the store will only loose a thousands dollars on a seven thousand dollar purchase.