Card Holder Not Present “Tyre Scam”

Update: Friday 10th May

We have recently received a report from a member regarding an ongoing scam. The scam bears striking resemblance to previous incidents detailed below. In this particular case, several card payments were made for tyre purchases, with each transaction followed by the collection of tyres by a van. Subsequently, it was discovered that the payments had been made using stolen card details a few days later.

If you encounter any suspicious activity or are uncertain about the legitimacy of a transaction, refrain from proceeding.

The IGA has received multiple reports from members across the country who have been targeted by Card Holder Not Present “tyre scams”, where goods (often tyres) or vehicles are purchased over the phone using stolen credit card details.

This is a very common scam which happens nationwide on both credit and debit cards, and the RMI Legal team advised that they are continuing to receive queries regarding businesses losses due to tyres purchased with stolen credit card details.

In previous attempts at defrauding garages, goods such as vehicles have been collected within 24 hours of the fraudulent purchase. Further purchases are also attempted before the credit card company charges back the outstanding balance, leaving the trader with no goods/vehicles and no payment.

A new development in a recent instance is that the card details used to conduct the purchase have been stolen from another garage business, who shared them via an online transaction to purchase parts.

This has been an issue that we have been aware of for a number of years. Please be vigilant in regard to safety when conducting card transaction in all ventures; in person, online and via telephone. If you are at any point unsure of the legitimacy of a transaction, do not proceed and contact your banking provider to verify your queries.

Although there has been an increase in distance sales to help maintain business’ revenues throughout the coronavirus pandemic, as a garage, a credit card payment over the phone should be very unusual, and should immediately put you on your guard.

We advise you to read through the rules for conducting these transactions below, provided by Barclays, but you may need to check with your own card processing provider to ensure you comply with any specific rules they have. If you have not done everything within your power to ensure the transaction is genuine, you are responsible for the losses.

Accepting Card Holder Not Present (CNP) transactions by phone

Sometimes it’s just not possible for the cardholder to be in front of you, like if you’re taking payments over the phone. Whilst you can take Card Holder Not Present transactions, it’s important to understand that there are higher risks involved.

When you accept these payments, you’ll need to get an authorisation and make a note of the following:

  • The 16-digit card number
  • The card expiry date
  • The cardholder’s full name and address
  • Their postcode and phone number
  • The delivery address and name of the person receiving the goods
  • The gross transaction amount (that means the total amount including postage, packaging, VAT etc)
  • The card security code (CSC)

When dealing with CNP transactions, make sure you don’t let the cardholder pick up goods in person. If they pay by phone and come to collect the goods, you need to cancel the transaction and carry out a Card Present transaction instead.

This means that you must never give the goods to anyone who claims to be collecting them on the cardholder’s behalf (like a taxi driver).

If you believe this scam has happened to you, please call the IGA on 01788 225 908 so that we can make other members aware of what is happening.

You can also read Barclays’ rules for card processing in full here. Other providers will have similar rules.