40+ bank card fraud victims may have used same ATM in Union Co.


UNION, SC (WSPA) – More than 40 victims of bank card fraud have come forward and they’re all in one concentrated area of the Upstate: Union County.

If there were ever a day that didn’t have enough minutes to spare, it was today for Union County Sheriff David Taylor.

“We’ve had 4 reports this morning. And our guys are taking two calls as we speak,” he said when we spoke to him first at 11am.

40 people who bank with Arthur State Bank, and a handful of others became victims of debit card fraud in a matter of seconds this past week.

April Lawson says $1000 dollars was drained from her account, eight transactions just minutes apart.

“It’s hard to sleep at night knowing that you’ve got bills that’s going unpaid. Another thing is being able to provide for the kids needs and their wants and not being able to do it,” said Lawson.

It’s a story echoed by other victims like Antonio Smith with two kids of his own, and only small change left in his account.

“When I looked at it, it was a dollar and 42 cents. And I was like, no, it really can’t be happening,” he said.

The banks are urging anyone affected to file police reports within your jurisdiction. They can then file a claim with their insurance companies, which means they’re more likely to put that money back in victims accounts.

And as the hours passed, more reports came into agencies in the Union area.

“So far today we’re up to 10 reports. The city is up to 7 reports and the town of Jonesville has one report so far,” said Kim Bailey at the Sheriff’s office.

The only up side to so many victims, is more evidence on the source of the breach.

“What we will start to do now is put the pieces together. Find the common denominator,” said Sheriff Taylor.

“Most of the people that I talked to had used the ATM at Arthur State at West Town Plaza,” said Lawson.

Smith admitted, he used that ATM off the Duncan Bypass, too.

Arthur State Bank told 7News a skimming machine that records card numbers may have been put on or in that ATM last week. As more victim reports came in, the bank checked and could not find any evidence of the skimmer.

“I hope that they catch whoever done this, to not only me but everyone else.”

The Sheriff’s office says the card numbers were used in Charlotte, NC and the Augusta, Georgia area.

Banks and law enforcement say they are undetectable, so the best way to protect yourself is use your bank’s mobile app, so you get a text whenever a withdrawal is made. That way you can catch the first transaction before more come.

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