Careful Before Swapping Your Debit / Credit Cards, 3 arrested in Goa for installing Card-Reading devices in POS Machines

The demonetization drive of Narendra Modi government has its own side effects. The vendors across the Goa are now installing the card swapping machines to get the business as the cash is not available in the market. But be careful before swapping your Debit or Credit cards as swapping the cards at unknown places may put you in trouble. Cyber Crime Cell of Goa Police has arrested three persons from Calangute area for installing the Card-Reading devices in the POS (Point of Sale) machines.

The POS machines are available with vendors for a long time now and it is not only due to the demonetization that people have seen that machine. But the demonetization have made some crooks smarter and they have started installing POS machines with Card-Reader to con the customers. These kind of cases are more visible in the coastal areas where lots of tourists visit on regular basis. In one such incident, the cyber crime cell of Goa police managed to get hold of three such crooks who were in process of fleecing the tourists by installing the Card-Reading device in the POS machines which used to swipe Debit or Credit cards by the customers after the purchase is made with vendors.

According to the sources, this incident took place on Saturday in the most happening tourist hub of Goa, Calangute. Cyber Crime Cell of Goa police arrested three persons hailing from Uttar Pradesh. According to the DIG of Goa, “Cyber crime cell of Goa police arrested Ramesh Chauhan (46), Alihusain Asad Galli (21) and Abhishek Singh (29). They were apprehended from Calangute with debit/credit card skimmers when they were looking for prospective outlets to deploy these,” Deputy Inspector General Vimal Gupta told reporters today.       

He said the cyber crime acted on a tip-off received by Deputy Superintendent of Police Nelson Albuquerque. “The Cyber Crime police station was assisted by Calangute police station during the raid,” Mr. Gupta said. Police have attached two skimmers, one laptop, four mobile phones, two pen drives and seven debit cards and other articles from the accused.

According to the sources, the Card-Reading devices comes into work when a customer swipes their Credit or Debit cards on such machines. It records all the data from that card along with personal identification numbers. The sources from police have revealed that it is very difficult for the layman to distinguish between original swapping machines and the machines with skimmer installed. “The Cyber Crime police recovered a skimmer from the possession of arrested accused and others from the place where it was installed. The recovered skimmer look very similar to a genuine POS terminal that is credit/debit card swiping machine and cannot be identified as a skimmer by a layman,” Mr. Gupta said.


Meanwhile, The Goa police have booked the crooks  under section 420 (cheating) of Indian Penal Code and section 66 of IT Act in this regard and the further investigations are underway, said the police sources. Although the Goa Police have arrested few crooks but they do not look like the major masterminds behind this high tech crimes and there is a possibility of such more machines getting installed by some more persons on the other locations in Goa. One needs to be very careful while swapping the cards on the machines in such places. It is very difficult to distinguish between sober and crooks but most of the reputable places are safe to deal with your cards. In case you come across any such suspicious activities at any place in Goa please do become the responsible citizen and inform the police about the same.         


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