Dazzle Carrington and Laquesha Bailey (NYLO Interns)
POLICE yesterday reported an increase in the incidence of bank card skimming by an alarming 181 per cent in the last four years. The revelation was made during the weekly press briefing at the Police Administration Building in Port of Spain.
Head of the Fraud Squad Ag Snr Supt Totaram Dookhie, said his unit, the Bankers’ Association and the Trans-National Crime Unit have been working together to decrease the number of incidents. This year police arrested 16 foreigners Bolivia, Spain, the Dominican Republic, the United Kingdom, Bulgaria and Canada, convicting nine of them. Several locals were also arrested.
Dookhie displayed several devices used for skimming such as “deep insert devices” seized from local businesses, including “a prominent food outlet” and ATMs.
He said the devices were used to steal information from one’s bank card by acquiring the information, then connecting and transferring it to a computer which puts it on a spreadsheet, then onto a card. He encouraged members of the public to be vigilant and responsible when banking.
Dookhie said the police have also been dealing with an increase in vile and unacceptable posts on social media which malign the character of individuals. He said while the country’s Constitution distinctly allows for the right to freedom of speech, people are taking things too far. He warned that people could be charged, prosecuted and convicted.
“We at the TTPS are appealing to persons that prior to activating that send button, you should consider the consequences.”
He said citizens should also be wary of posting pictures on social media while abroad since it alerts thieves that they are not at home.