Fraud fears force Shell to cut chip & pin

10 May 2006
UK petrol giant Shell was forced to suspend all chip-and-pin payments at its forecourts across the country yesterday, following fraud scam fears.

An investigation into the fraud allegations, which are estimated to have cost customers of the fuel station chain in the region of £1 million, is ongoing. Eight people were reportedly arrested last week.

According to consumer group Card Watch, it is a case of an "old type" of card skimming "but the means they used to carry out the fraud are new".

"The fraudsters managed to compromise a pin pad," said spokesperson Mark Bowerman. "They then skimmed the magnetic strip details and made a pin."

Mr Bowerman suggested that the thieves then went abroad to use the card information to purchase items and withdraw cash from cardholders' accounts.

Consumers are reportedly concerned that, despite chip-and-pin technology, fraud continues to be a problem, even with some of the major retailers.

However, analysts have said that the case is proof that security measures are now better equipped than ever to stop this kind of theft at a relatively early stage.

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