Are Visa Gift Cards Untraceable
I was in a retail store today, and these people were discussing how easy it is for people to use stolen credit cards, and buy those visa gift cards without being traced after they purchase the gift cards.
I find this very hard to believe because
A) when you purchase a visa gift card they send the gift card number to the server to the company that owns those gift cards to have it activate it, and I am sure they log which store that happened at, too.
B) I am sure they can monitor that gift card and it will leave a paper trail just like a credit card.
Am I wrong?
- Gift cards are purchased online to make it harder to trace, then traded or sold at a discount to a 3rd party.Dec 31 ’14 at 9:52
- 5Where I live, these “gift credit cards” can be purchased in grocery stores. As long as you pay with cash, I doubt it can be traced, like pre-paid sim card JeroenJan 1 ’15 at 8:11
- My debit card was used over the weekend to purchase several of these. I know for sure because I called the Walgreens stores where it was used and they could see exactly what the perp had bought. So, are these prepaid cards somehow linked to my debit card? If the person uses the prepaid card will the police be able to trace and link purchases made with that card back to my debit card to try to find this person? user128522
B) It will. The gift card becomes an account, and you can review your purchase history just like a regular credit card.
Three Iphone Apps To Keep Track Of Gift Cards
As we all know, gift cards are a popular holiday gift. Keeping track of gift cards can be a chore, however. Here are three iPhone apps to help you keep track of your gift card balances.
What’s the best way to keep track of the gift cards, and their respective balances, you received from family and friends around the holidays?
While we may not have a concrete answer to a common problem, we do have three apps that aim to help you keep better track of your gift cards. Some solutions are free, and others will cost you no more than 99 cents.
GiftCards-Balance Tracker GiftCards-Balance Tracker allows you quickly enter and store gift card information. You are also able to enter card names and an opening balance. Once a gift card and beginning balance have been entered, you can then keep track of transactions for the card by entering a name for the transaction as well as dollar amount. GiftCards will keep track of your balance, including entered transactions automatically, no math required.
This app works great, if you can remember to take a few seconds to enter your transactions.
Gift Card Gift Card goes a bit more into the details of keeping track of gift cards. You are able to enter gift card names, pictures for each card, expiration dates, and transactions.
Going even further, you can also buy cards directly within the app, or even send a card to a friend or family member.
C Check Your Bank Statement
If you used a debit or credit card to purchase the gift card, then look for the transaction on your bank statement. The date, time and location of the gift card purchase might be enough to help a customer service representative locate your card number. If you only purchased a gift card at that time, the dollar value of the gift card may be the same as the total transaction charge as well, which would be helpful. Once you find the transaction, take the debit or credit card back to the same store and see if you can get a reprint of your receipt .
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How To Get Your Lost Gift Card Back
While I cannot guarantee you will be able to get a lost gift card back, you may be able to get it replaced if you have the gift card number, a payment receipt or the activation receipt. Without that information, replacing a lost gift card will be a challenge, but still worth the effort. Below are the steps I would take to try and get a lost gift card back.
The Idiot’s Guide To Laundering $9 Million
Step one: Use stolen credit card information to buy a boatload of gift cards. Step two: Try to sell those gift cards online for millions of dollars without getting caught.
If there’s one way that criminals love to use your stolen credit card information, it’s to rush out and buy a pile of gift cards for popular retailers like Walmart, Target and Amazon. Gift cards are easy to spend or sell and notoriously difficult to track.
However, as it turns out, that anonymity goes out of the window when you pull out a computer to sell those gift cards online. In a recent scheme described in a previously unreported federal court case, some person or persons based in Florida bought 45,000 gift cards for Walmart and other stores with stolen card info and then sold them on gift card exchange site Raise.com. The gift cards’ face value ranged from $2 to $2,000 each and were sold for a total of $9 million on Raise.
The wrinkle? Authorities got onto the scam while it was still ongoing. Raise was tipped off by federal prosecutors and asked to keep the fraudsters’ account open, Raise CEO George Bousis told Forbes, whose company has facilitated the sale of almost $1 billion in gift cards since it was founded in 2013.
In recent years, sites like Raise, Gift Card Granny and CardCash have popped up to facilitate the inevitable offloading of unwanted gift cards. To reduce fraud, Raise and other sites require extensive information from sellers and give a 100-day guarantee to buyers.
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Can Gift Card Purchases Be Traced
The gift card usually cant be traced, and the merchant gets a chargeback from the holder of the stolen credit card. Taking over an account and buying gift cards: With someones bank or online shopping account credentials, criminals can buy lots of gift cards and spend them or cash them out before theyre caught.
Establish Proof Of Gift Card Purchase
In order to report a gift card lost or stolen, youll need to know the gift card number. If you dont have the gift card number, then proof of purchase is the next best thing. This can be found on an activation receipt, a store receipt, a credit or debit transaction, a loyalty card or via some serious sleuthing. Below Ill explain each of these options and then we will discuss what to do if youre not the person who bought the gift card.
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What Types Of Gift Card Fraud Exist
Gift cards are untethered to individual identities, hard to trace, easy to convert to cash or resellable goods, and ubiquitous. Better yet for fraudsters, theyre not bound by the same extensive regulations as credit and debit card transactions. Its no wonder so many different scams have developed around gift cards. Here are the main ones you should be aware of, along with some advice about how to defend yourself.
View Who Redeemed A Gift Cards
There are 2 ways to track who redeemed a gift card and the value
Can Gift Cards Be Traced Back To A Credit Card
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No. If you can convince Amazon that someone stole your gift card, and they refund you the value that was taken, then it’s no longer any of your business who stole the value.
Likewise, can prepaid debit cards be traced? If you gave a bank debit card to someone to do something bad with, it and you would be easily traceable. They’re now called “prepaid access cards” because they’re not tied to a bank account. They’re just pointers to a sum of money you’ve already paid up in advance.
Likewise, can you get caught using a stolen gift card?
Store security could detain them until the police arrive, and they could be prosecuted for theft and/or fraud. But if no one has yet reported it lost or stolen, it will have the full value and anyone could use it to make a purchase. That is why you should keep up with gift cards and use them as soon as possible.
Can I find out who used my gift card?
Once you have the gift card number , call customer service for the merchant that issued the gift card. The objective of the phone call is not to find the gift card, but to find out if the gift card has been used.
What To Do If Youve Been Targeted By A Gift Card Scam
- Contact eBay Customer Service immediately
- Keep the eBay Gift Card itself and your receipt for the eBay Gift Card. Well need these in order to verify your eBay Gift Card.
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What Do I Do If I Lost My Visa Gift Card
What should I do if my gift card is lost or stolen? Report a lost or stolen card immediately to the card issuer by calling the toll-free number listed on the issuers website or in the card documentation. Youll need to provide the lost or stolen Visa Gift card number for cancellation and replacement.
Why Do Scammers Want Gift Cards
6 minute read
Most people use gift cards to treat a loved one or say thank you to an employee. But did you know that gift cards are also popular with scammers? Since 2015 there has been a significant increase in scammers demanding payments by gift card.
So why do scammers want gift cards? Gift cards are like cash in a lot of ways they are hard to trace and once used, its hard to get your money back.
Read on to find out more about how these scams operate and how to avoid becoming a victim.
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Can An Amazon Gift Card Be Traced
Gift cards are difficult to trace. Gagliardi said that it’s complicated to track each gift card purchased with each credit card. That makes it that much more important that credit card holders keep careful track of their card statements and any unusual purchases.
Additionally, can I find out who used my gift card? Once you have the gift card number , call customer service for the merchant that issued the gift card. The objective of the phone call is not to find the gift card, but to find out if the gift card has been used.
Beside this, can Amazon gift cards be sent anonymously?
Sending gifts anonymously from Amazon. Amazon requires you to key in your billing address to authenticate with your credit card company. 1) Buy a similar valued Amazon Gift Card – Email and send it to your OWN e-mail. 2) Wait for 5 minutes and you will receive a gift redemption code from Amazon.
Can you go to jail for using a stolen gift card?
If you are convicted of unlawful possession or use of an unauthorized or counterfeit gift card, credit card, or other access device in violation of 18 U.S.C. section 1029, you face a fine of up to $250,000, up to 10 years in prison, or both.
How To View Who And Where Gift Cards Were Redeemed
If you want to get notified whenever a gift card is redeemed , or you operate a business model that pays out money to your partners when they redeem a gift card you issued , read on…
Before you begin – set up your user accounts
You will need to set up a user in your Gift Up! dashboard for every staff member or location that you want to track. It’s up to you whether every user has their own access, or you issue a shared login to each of your locations.
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Find The Gift Card Number
I know what youre thinking. Without the gift card, how can I possibly find the gift card number? Well, having the physical plastic would be the easiest way, of course, but thats not available. So we have to look at the original purchase for clues. Below are places to look for the missing gift card number:
If you find the lost gift card number, then your chances of recovering the associated funds increase significantly. If you cant find the number, dont give up. Gather activation, purchase and transaction data instead.
Think youre the victim of a gift card scam? Read this post on Gift Card Scam Protection.
Protect Yourself From Gift Card Scams
To make sure your eBay Gift Card codes are safe from scammers, follow these tips:
Treat your eBay Gift Card redemption code like cash.
- Never give or send your eBay Gift Card code to anyone outside of eBay.com checkout. Thats a scam.
- Your eBay Gift Card can only be redeemed at checkout on eBay.com.
- Do not use your gift card to pay anyone outside of the eBay platform.
We will never ask you to email your personal information. Remember, if eBay needs you to update your account or provide any information, we always send a copy of our request to your Messages folder in My eBay. Always check there first.
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A Find The Activation Receipt
When you purchase a gift card, you will most likely be given a paper receipt that shows the last few digits of the gift card, the date and time of the transaction and the dollar value loaded onto the gift card. As easy as it may be to toss that piece of paper into the recycle bin, it can be super helpful in replacing a gift card that is gone. Sometimes the activation receipt is combined with the store receipt and other times it is a separate piece of paper. If you can locate the activation receipt, then skip down to Step #2 below and get ready to pick up the phone.
The Story Of A Lost Gift Card
My brother called the other day to complain that hed lost a gift card. He wanted to know if I had any tricks for getting it back. Like a crime scene investigator, to answer his question, I first needed to understand how he treated the gift card before he lost it. The situation is not good. He allegedly put the now-missing gift card in his pant pocket, but he could have thrown it on the counter next to the mail, or he left it inside the greeting card it came inwhich he cant find either. This case is about to go cold.
Youve heard the saying, treat gift cards like cash? Well, its true. Had my brother opened a greeting card and found a 20 dollar bill inside, I doubt he would have stuffed the cash into his pocket, tossed it on the counter or left it in the card. He likely would have immediately put the money in his wallet. He should have done the very same thing with his gift card. Since he didnt, the chances of recovery are slim, but there are a few things I can still suggest.
If you bought the gift card from a gift card mall, read this post on how to replace a lost gift card from the grocery store.
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How To Know If You’re Being Scammed
Someone might be trying to scam you if they ask you to buy a Google Play gift card and share the code so that you can pay for something outside Google Play.
- A scammer calls and pretends to be from a government agency . The scammer says that you owe money for taxes, bail money, debt collection, and more. They tell you that to avoid arrest, or to prevent the seizure of physical items or your personal identification information , you have to pay them with gift cards.
- A scammer claims to be a family member in trouble, an attorney, or another representative of your family member. The scammer tells you that they need to be paid in gift cards in order to remedy the situation. They may deter you from attempts to contact the family member to verify the claim. Dont believe them. Never buy gift cards for them or provide them with any gift card codes.
These examples only cover some types of scams. Scammers constantly change the ways they trick people. If anyone asks you for a code, it could be a scam.
Tracking Redeemed Gift Cards Using Gift Up Reports
This is the best way to track who redeemed gift cards over a period of time. Head over to in your dashboard, and you will be able to view all redemption events in a time period, along with whom, the value of the redemption event, and when.
You can also download this data as a CSV file that you can open in any spreadsheet app.
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