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How She Ripped Off a $5,000 Audio Sound System in Seconds

posted on: Wed Jul 26 2017

Back in the 1970s, in the the early years of aftermarket car stereos, thieves would brag about how fast they could “jack” 8-track and cassette tape players and quality speakers.

Any time under five minutes was considered a lightning-fast heist worthy of bragging rights. The victim returned to their car to find a spaghetti nest of colored wires and gaping holes in their door panels where the speakers had been.

FraudsterNow meet Charlene Hatcher (fictitious name changed to protect the guilty). She is a
luxury buyer with a subscription to The Robb Report and a serious retail therapy addiction. Charlene just nabbed a sweet $5,000 Bang & Olufsen surround sound system for her Bugatti Veyron. And she did it in under a minute—47 seconds to be exact. Plus, her risk of getting caught was about zero. 

Ah..the power of the Internet! eCommerce automotive, powersports, aftermarket product, and performance and accessories businesses are losing millions to fraudsters who are increasingly using mobile phones and fake credit cards to pimp their rides. These thieves are now swiping millions in new and pre-owned loot without ever leaving their poolside lounge chairs.

Because the new EMV card readers (also called Chip & Pin) are making card-present fraud more difficult and costly, they are actually driving scammers to the web where they carry out card-not-present (CNP) and mobile fraud schemes. In fact, CNP fraud is projected to more than double, from $10.7 billion in 2015 to $25.6 billion by 2020.

The US automotive aftermarket was worth $318 billion in 2013. It’s no surprise then that the online slice of this segment is growing faster than brick and mortar outlets with 2017 online sales expected to top $8 billion and grow by over $1 billion annually.

The Internet offers a treasure trove for fraudsters with a hankering for automotive, motorcycle, and other powersports toys. Monster truck lift kits, mag wheel sets, helmets, boots, leather vests, and even GoPro cameras. Some of these items are for personal use. But more often they are turned for fast, easy cash on eBay, Craigslist, or even in those newsprint motorsports shopping rags at supermarkets.

If you have eCommerce visibility in this industry, you’re probably seeing signs of this fraud wave every week.

Wondering whether you are at increasing risk? Here are 7 signs your fraud prevention program needs an tune-up:

  1. Higher Chargebacks
  2. Increasing IT Complexity
  3. Growing Product Losses
  4. More Time Spent on Manual Reviews
  5. Delayed Orders
  6. Avoiding New Markets or Opportunities
  7. Escalating Training Time for Manual Review Agents

Also, if your business has been processing eCommerce transactions for 3 years or at least 100,000 transactions – no matter how well you think your fraud prevention system has been performing – it’s time for a tune-up. Otherwise, you could be wasting money and losing profits.

Check out our next webinar "How to Reduce eCommerce Fraud for Automotive & Powersports" on August 16th at 11:00 am PDT and discover better fraud detection strategies and tools. 

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