Growing phone scam targets another Indianapolis retailer

Callers pretend to be from corporate headquarters

INDIANAPOLIS - A growing telephone scam has targeted yet another Indianapolis retailer, making off with hundreds of dollars by posing as a caller from the store's corporate headquarters.

In the latest rip-off, a Speedway gas station worker was duped into activating pre-paid credit cards, and it cost that worker her job.

Police were called to the Speedway gas station on West 86th Street and Zionsville Road, where a worker said she was tricked into activating three gift cards for $499 each.

It's the same tactic used last month by a caller to the Marsh Hometown Market on Keystone at 53rd Street, who posed as corporate headquarters to have 20 different credit cards activated, resulting in a loss of $3,500 for the store.

According to police reports filed in each case, the callers pose as the store's corporate headquarters and urge employees to activate the cards as part of some secret investigation or a technical glitch involving the gift card system.

In each case, the worker is convinced to activate the cards and then read the full credit card numbers to the scammer.

While the call is still in progress, the scammer is able to begin making charges on those credit cards, because the cards have been activated and the crooks know the card numbers.

In the Marsh scam last month , store workers told police they discovered the scam before the full value of the 20 activated cards could be drained.

In last week's scam at the Speedway gas station, store workers told police they lost the full value of the activated cards, totaling $1,497.

The Speedway manager told police that workers had already been warned about this ongoing telephone scam. The worker, a 21-year-old woman, was fired for failing to follow store policies with regard to gift cards, according to the police report.

Police reported they had no leads on either case since the charges are all made against the credit cards over the telephone.

In the Marsh theft, the real Marsh headquarters declined to comment.

In the latest Speedway case, the gas station's corporate office in Springfield, Ohio, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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