Police in Phuket say foreigners are reportedly using stolen credit cards to purchase high-end products on the island, including gold jewellery and iPhones. Retailers and businesses taking credit and debit card payments are being told to be additionally vigilant.
According to a Phuket Express report, the suspects use fake passports that match the credit card details and wear hats and masks to avoid being identified. If questioned about the masks, they claim the measure is for Covid-19 prevention.
According to the report, the suspects usually make their purchases late in the day, targeting shopkeepers just before closing time. Police say this is done to take advantage of the fact that vendors are in a rush to get home and may be more lax about security checks.
Officers are asking shopkeepers to ensure credit card information matches a buyer’s passport. They say buyers should also be asked to show their faces and use mobile apps to confirm their purchases.
It’s understood the suspects are Asian men, usually carrying black bags, and wearing face masks, white caps, and black shoes. They usually produce American passports, which police say may be fake.
SOURCE: The Phuket Express