Update on Gallatin, TN card fraud

Law enforcement continues to shield the name of a breached business in Gallatin, Tennessee, even though they acknowledge that past customers might still become victims.

Sarah Kingsbury reports, in part:

To date, Gallatin police have received 203 fraud reports related to the outbreak, with the majority of charges showing up on bank and credit card statements as purchases between $80-$100 at locations in various Florida cities.

Investigators discovered the source of the outbreak, which police initially pinpointed to a location around the 1400 block of Nashville Pike, but the business has not been identified because it is also considered a victim of the scam.

The information was not stolen through a skimming device on a card-swipe machine as Gallatin police originally believed, Mays said.

In terms of size, Mays described the Gallatin outbreak as a “small-scale, localized event that resulted from a computer that was not adequately protected.”

The business “is aware of it, has taken mitigating measures and it’s safe to use your card,” he said. “I don’t think there’s any reason to be unduly alarmed or afraid.”

However, although there isn’t a threat that card information is currently being stolen, consumers who made purchases at the unidentified business in the past may still see fraudulent charges show up on their statements.

“If I go into a computer somewhere as a hacker and I steal 1,000 credit card numbers, that doesn’t mean all 1,000 of those numbers will be used tomorrow,” Mays said.

“A hacker will sell them off bit by bit or in large groups to people who will use them, and that might take place tomorrow or it might take place several months from now.”

Investigators said it is likely some consumers made a purchase at the business many months ago and only recently saw illicit charges on their accounts. For this reason, police have encouraged credit and debit card users to monitor their monthly statements carefully and report any suspicious activity to their card companies.

Why the hell not alert people, “Hey, if you did business at _______ during ____ to ____, be sure to check your statements or contact your bank and cancel your card?” The way they’re handling this, consumers are not being given information I think they should be given.

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