COVID Fraud Alert
We hope everyone is staying healthy. We wanted to send out some information for awareness, in light of the upcoming holiday season and the increasing popularity of online sales / instore pickup in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
There has been several cases of stolen credit card numbers being used to place online orders and obtain product from store fraudulently, often times days before the credit card holder even realizes they have been victimized. The store is subsequently on the hook for the amount. Suspects have been known to do one of two things:
1. Use curbside pickup (where available) and call the store to have staff load pre-paid merchandise into their vehicles. This is often done without the suspect entering the store, or the vehicle coming close enough to obtain a license plate.
2. Enter into store (often with COVID mask), attend customer service and give their order number/pickup id in exchange for product. Staff don't always ask for ID, and if they do, a fraudulent one/cell phone photo is shown. 9 times out of 10 the cardholder name is different from the name of the person picking up.
Just a reminder to have staff remain vigilant, and when possible do the following:
The information stated below are only suggestions; please adhere to your own business practices during this time of COVID
1. Have customers come inside the store for pickup; that way they can be captured on the store CCTV.
2. Obtain photo ID from all customers, and ensure the ID matches the credit card used. You may consider asking the customer to stand back 6 to 8 feet and remove their mask momentarily to confirm the ID matches the person picking the item up.
3. Consider taking photocopies of all ID from people picking up products over a certain dollar amount.
4. If curbside pickup is important for customer health & safety/peace of mind, at minimum have staff take down license plate/ID numbers from customers picking up.
If you have any doubts about the order, do not release the product and contact the merchant.
Report all fraud to us as soon as possible with as much detail as possible. Remember call 911 in the event of an emergency / crime in progress, and contact the non-emergency line (604-532-3200) for a delayed report if the suspect has already left.