MADISON COUNTY, AL (WAFF) - The Better Business Bureau warned consumers of a new scam that could leave them in debt.
BBB representatives said thieves are getting a hold of people's debit/credit card information and using it to purchase credit reports which shows the consumers personal information.
Representatives said they received several phone calls from North Alabama residents who said they saw charges from credit agencies on their debit/credit card statements. Customers said they've been charged $19.95 or more for a credit report by Experian, Consumerinfo.com or Creditreport.com but have not recently purchased their credit report. The consumers indicated that when they contacted the company for the credit report companies, they learned their debit or credit card number had been used to purchase a credit report for another individual.
A Morgan county woman said she started to receive phone calls on loans and other purchases she did not make after she realized her card had been charged.
BBB officials said consumers should call the number that is listed next to the merchant's name on their statement and be prepared for the employee to ask you for your name and the debit or credit card number that was used so they can locate the transaction. If the names do match, then you will be asked to provide your social security number for further verification. If your name doesn't match the name on the credit report, then the credit agency should be able to grant you a refund within 7-14 days.
Also, immediately contact your debit or credit card company to report misuse of your card and request a new account number.
Contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) through their id theft clearinghouse at www.ftc.gov/idtheft. This will allow them to identify patterns so they can investigate the source of the data breach.