Card skimmers steal thousands

A CARD skimming gang has again targeted Felixstowe, stealing thousands of pounds more from people's bank accounts.

Richard Cornwell

A CARD skimming gang has again targeted Felixstowe, stealing thousands of pounds more from people's bank accounts.

People are being warned to keep a close eye on their statements to see if money goes missing, though those who have been stung have found their accounts wiped out in days.

Earlier in the year when several bank machines were fitted with skimming devices to clone cards, tens of thousands of pounds was withdrawn as far away as Australia, Argentina and America after the international gang emailed details of dozens of accounts to their accomplices abroad.

Karen Farrow said she had gone to her bank in Felixstowe and found her account completely cleared.

“It was an account that I saved for my daughter's birthday fund, and now one week to go, no money, no presents and no party,” she said.

Most Read

“How do you explain that to a four-year-old? These people who do this obviously don't care and take from anyone.

“I have done nothing but cry for hours at the thought of disappointing my daughter - these people are scum and are affecting us all.”

Ashley Robinson, of London was visiting his brother in Felixstowe with his son Dean when his card was skimmed after they used the Nationwide machine in Hamilton Road.

“I didn't have my card with me so we used my son's card. He doesn't use the card very often and when he checked a few days later the account had been wiped clean and £4,000 was gone,” he said.

“It is very disturbing - an awful thing to happen.

“The police told us that these thieves usually only leave their device on the machine for an hour and then they are gone.”

Banks say they are doing all they can to stay one step ahead of the card skimmers and are modernising cashpoints with thief-proof machines as quickly as they can.

Police say because of new chips in cards the chances of a card being skimmed are “absolutely minimal”.

Officers do not investigate cashpoint crime unless the victim's bank reports it. Banks do reimburse the missing money, though it can take up to ten days.

Police say if cashpoint users spot a skimming device or anything suspicious on the machine they should phone 999 immediately.

Should police be investigating these thefts - or is it a waste of police time? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail