Hancock Co. investigators probe credit card cloning ring

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GREENFIELD, Ind. (Feb. 25, 2016) - Hancock County investigators are releasing new images of a potential suspect, trying to crack a credit card cloning case, as the number of victims has been increasing.

Investigators said they usually get half a dozen cases of credit card theft in a month. In the past month, they’ve almost tripled that.

“It’s hard to say how big this operation is. Somebody is making a lot of money,” said Capt. Jeff Rasche, with the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators aren’t sure how the suspects are getting the credit card information, as none of the victims actually reported their cards lost or stolen.

Rasche said skimmers are likely, but they have not found one location in town that connects all the victims.

Kimberly Criswell is one of the victims, who got had for hundreds of dollars.

“It was the Monday after the Super Bowl. Someone had gotten my debit card number, and we found out from a fraud alert that they used my card forty times,” she said.

Rasche said images released of the potential suspect are from a grocery store in Avon, and it's likely multiple people are involved in the scheme.

“He’s buying everything from gift cards to Moneygrams to some merchandise,” he said.

Investigators said they’ve got the man tracked across the region, from Avon to Brownsburg and in Indianapolis on the far east side, the north side, and the south side, making up to this point, $35,000 in purchases.

Once we get into this a little deeper that number is going to drastically increase,” Rasche said.

He said retail investigators told local detectives it’s possible the cloned cards are created as bulk financial information is bought and sold online.

As for the next step, Rasche believes public tips are key, because there aren’t many other options.

“By the time we get it to the public, we are at a dead end. So, we’re hoping with the public’s help we can get these people identified,” he said.

If you know anything about these cases, you can call the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office at (317) 477-1199.

Investigators recommend checking your financial statements regularly and ending the practice of using a debit card, which gives thieves instant access to your funds. If you use a credit card, you can dispute fraudulent charges.

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