A member got in touch with us after they were approached by a man at a parking meter. Have you heard of the ‘Lebanese Loop’ parking meter scam?
A member was stopped by a man who pleaded with them to help him with a parking meter that wouldn’t accept a foreign card.
Unfortunately, they offered to use their card as the man said he’d be able to pay them back in cash.
He insisted on pressing the buttons, but let them type in their own Pin – which the member thought they had concealed from him.
The man then said that the transaction was void, and the card wouldn’t come out of the machine. He rang what he said was the number given on the meter and gave the member his phone to speak with the meter personnel.
They said that if a second credit card was inserted, it would force the first one out.
Of course upon trying this, the card did not come out. After the man left the member tried calling the number on their own phone – it was an automated message.
In 10 minutes the thieves had withdrawn £500 on each card. Fortunately, the bank refunded the amount.
What is a ‘Lebanese Loop’?
It’s not too often you meet a scammer in ‘real life’ – more often they lurk behind a computer or on the end of a phone.
Since contacting us, the member reported the crime to the police and has told friends and family to watch out – spreading awareness is vital.
There have been other reports of this in London. A police warning described a suspected ‘Lebanese Loop’ – a device that captures cards while the suspect watches you enter your Pin.
Action Fraud told us the scam isn’t that common, but if it happens to you, contact your card provider and the police. If you’re ever entering your pin anywhere, even if it’s not in front of people, make sure you conceal it.
Have you ever been approached by a scammer in person? How did you deal with the situation?