Protecting your credit union and members against fraud is the League’s highest priority. This week, the League was contacted by the U.S. Secret Service and made aware of new fraudulent activity that is impacting local financial institutions. A brief summary of the activity is outlined below.
Scenario #1: There have been numerous reports made about fraudulent cashiers checks being cashed and deposited throughout the state. The investigation has led law enforcement to an out-of-state group that is traveling to different locations to find homeless individuals in need of cash. These individuals are often provided a hotel room, new clothes, and money in exchange for their help in negotiating fraudulent checks. Fraudulent activity has been reported throughout Central and Southern Maine with losses over $100,000 to date.
What You Can Do:
Credit unions are advised to pay close attention to suspicious behavior and ensure consumers are presenting valid forms of identification.
Scenario #2: In late December, a skimming device was retrieved from an automated fuel dispenser in Portland, Maine. The device was very sophisticated. It utilized a SIM card to transmit payment data in real-time, including PIN information via a text message to the perpetrators. That feature provided the fraudsters the ability to generate counterfeit cards within one day from when the information was compromised.
Upon further review, it was determined the device was linked to suspects who had been arrested earlier in the month from an ongoing investigation stretching across New Hampshire and Massachusetts. These suspects were apprehended by Secret Service agents in Boston and are currently being held, pending prosecution.
At this time, compromised card data is being evaluated and lists will be provided to credit unions once available.
What You Can Do:
If your members were impacted, you will be notified soon. Please be on the lookout for additional information.
The League will continue to keep you apprised as we receive information.