Police urge businesses to be vigilant as $ 10,000 stolen in EFTPOS scam
Businesses across the country are being warned of criminal activity targeting EFTPOS machines, which resulted in the theft of at least $ 10,000.
Two men have been charged and two others have been arrested in Perth, but WA police believe more people are part of the organized crime syndicate.
Detective Sergeant Jamie Hutcheson of the Financial Crimes Squad said offenders targeted businesses in several Perth suburbs, including Dianella, Duncraig, Perth and Leederville.
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“Violators – usually two or more people – go into a business and they’ll distract a staff member, then they’ll steal an EFTPOS machine and replace it with a compromised machine,” he said.
Violators then refund the transactions, transferring the money to their own account, before moving on to another company and exchanging the stolen machine for the machine from the next company.
“[The] the company is unable to determine if the machine has been taken because there is one [thatâs] have been replaced, and they usually don’t find out until the end of the day when they make their end-of-day returns.
âUsually these machines won’t work or they will have to be reset, but when they do the end-of-day returns, the machines show up with a different business name. “
Scam likely to be national
Detective Sergeant Hutcheson said the crimes were not isolated in WA, as one of the recovered devices was identified as originating in South Australia.
âWe think it’s definitely Australia-wide,â he said.
“We have been in contact with our counterparts in the eastern states and we believe there are violations in all states in Australia.”
Authorities are urging companies to be vigilant and not to leave EFTPOS machines unattended.
Detective Sgt Hutcheson said staff should also verify their company name appears on EFTPOS receipts as an added precaution.
Two men charged with theft and money laundering
On June 1, Australian Federal Police arrested two men at Perth Airport who were attempting to travel to Queensland, accusing them of purchasing plane tickets using false identification.
Two EFTPOS devices were found during a baggage search.
An 18-year-old man from South Australia has been charged with four counts of theft, 15 counts of money laundering and two counts of possession of stolen or illegally obtained property.
A man from Queensland, 24, has been charged with four counts of theft and 15 counts of money laundering.
The men, who appeared in Perth Magistrates’ Court earlier this week, have been denied bail and are due to reappear on June 17.
Two other men were arrested on Friday after police visited a shop in Joondalup.
One of the men was arrested at the scene, while the second was arrested after a short foot chase.
Both were taken to Joondalup police station.