Tesco self-scan tills open to card fraudWhich? contacted by victims of loophole

05 October 2006

 

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A security loophole at Tesco self-service tills is making it easy for thieves to buy goods with stolen cards, a Which? investigation has revealed.

At about 200 of the supermarket’s stores, shoppers can scan in their shopping themselves, then pay for groceries by swiping a debit or credit card at a checkout. The flaw in the system is that, below a certain amount, Tesco doesn’t require customers to sign or enter a Pin.

Which? has been contacted by several angry people who found that hundreds of pounds had been taken out of their accounts after crooks copied their cards and used them at Tesco stores and garages. The money was eventually refunded.

Chip and Pin

Tesco has told Which? that it's 'rolling out' chip and Pin at self-service tills, though it failed to say when this would be completed by. It added that levels of fraud at self-service tills were extremely low and there was a limit to the amount that a shopper could spend in one transaction; above that limit a signature was needed. However, this limit was 'comfortably above' the average basket going through self-service checkouts.

Neil Fowler, Editor of Which?, said: ‘It’s hard to believe that the UK’s biggest supermarket is making it so easy for criminals to use stolen cards in their stores. We think it’s highly irresponsible.’