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As the EMV shift continues, fraudsters are paying more attention to gift cards. Many scammers are using counterfeit credit or debit cards to buy gift cards at non-EMV merchants, causing some of those merchants to restrict the way they sell gift cards, according to gift card giant Blackhawk Network.
Supermarkets and other retailers are being victimized by crooks who use counterfeit magstripe cards to buy high-denomination gift cards, which don’t have EMV chips but can still be used at EMV-compliant merchants.
Some gift card sellers that have not yet embraced EMV are changing the way they sell high-denomination cards, at least in the short term. In certain cases, they are requiring customers to pay for gift cards with cash or use a PIN with a payment card, and asking for additional identity verification, industry experts say.
For HCS customers we suggest the following:
When someone wants to buy a gift card with a credit card, that the merchant ask to see some ID to help ensure that the credit card belongs to the purchaser.
This is especially true for over-the-phone purchases when the buyer shows up to retrieve them, but also for in-person transactions for high dollar gift card purchases.