One month ago today, three men walked into a Wal-Mart in Post Falls and attempted to buy in-store gift cards using a series of credit cards. Store managers grew suspicious and called police. That set off an investigation by local and federal authorities of a sophisticated scheme to steal credit card numbers from gas station customers, siphon funds from those accounts and launder the money through the purchase of retail gift cards. The Florida-based suspects fled, and the Post Falls Police Department and the U.S. Secret Service are still identifying victims across the Inland Northwest. Potentially hundreds of account numbers were stolen from residents in the Spokane, Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene areas. “A lot of people were compromised. We still don’t know the full scope of this,” Post Falls police Detective Neil Uhrig said. The thieves broke into a pair of gas pumps at an Exxon station near Interstate 90 and installed skimming devices that collect customers’ credit card and debit card numbers. This method has been used for years around the U.S. using inexpensive equipment easily purchased online, investigators say. Skimming crews also have been discovered this fall in Michigan, Iowa, Nebraska, Texas and other states. Many of the suspects are from Florida. Post Falls […]
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