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Schnucks: No Source Determined In ID Theft Problem

The Maryland Heights-based grocer has been feeling the wrath of customers who have had their bank accounts and credit cards compromised by identity thieves this month.

A spokeswoman for Schnucks told Patch Friday night that the grocery store chain has not been able to pinpoint the source of a breach that has left customers across the St. Louis region vulnerable to identity theft and bank accounts at risk.

The Secret Service, which as of earlier this week was not officially involved in an investigation but had been in touch with local law enforcement agencies, speculated that it could be a third party which processes credit and debit card transactions.

Once those card numbers are obtained, they are sold online in a black market, purchased by someone who creates new cards with the old numbers and racks up charges.

In many cases, those charges are flagged by the card issuer and the consumer is cleared of responsibility, but not always.

"I shopped at Schnucks near Webster Groves on the 16th, I found out on the 26th that my bank account has been completely cleaned out," Patch user Bonita Gilmore wrote in commenting on an earlier story regarding the problem. "Somebody had a real good time in Long Island New York with my hard earned bill money, bad thing about it the bank didn't catch it," she wrote.

The St. Louis Business Journal reports that Montgomery Bank has taken a $60,000 hit because of the fraud.

Schnucks spokeswoman Lori Willis said the chain hopes to have updated information soon but could not provide a timetable of when that would be available.

Secret Service Tips For Responding To Identity Theft Cases

Reverend Scott E. Lee March 30, 2013 at 03:28 AM
Cash for everything. I have a debit/ATM/Visa card that is used at my financial institution's ATMs only. If I don't have the cash for it in my hand, I don't buy it. I don't even use checks because they are nothing more than glorified debit transactions now. Sorry for those that are affected. I feel for them and what they are about to go through.
mjf March 30, 2013 at 01:05 PM
Viki - using the phrase "if you don't have the cash, you don't need it" in relation to this article gives the impression that you don't understand the difference between a debit card (which can only be used by a person who has cash in their checking account) and a credit card (which can be used by someone who can't immediately afford to pay cash for something, and hence puts it on 'credit).
Michael E. Carter March 30, 2013 at 01:57 PM
Wonder how will play out with Scnucks denying it now?
flyoverland March 30, 2013 at 02:12 PM
Excellent advice. Happy Easter.
Stacy Grindell April 01, 2013 at 01:26 PM
What I'm wondering is why didn't Schnucks just take down their credit card machines, that way less money the banks are out too. I've heard some people say, oh the banks and credit unions will give my money back but did you ever stop to think that they shouldn't be all responsible either. Take responsibility for your actions as well and if you know it will be most likely compromised, why use it at the place? Think of others and not just yourself people. If Schnucks would have stopped accepting credit cards, then less money the ignorant hackers would have gotten and the less the consumers would have used their cards at a place where the system is compromised, again, less money the hackers would have received. All of you just freely handed them the money knowingly!!

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