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blondlady Aug 4th, 2006 04:08 PM

As a town grows in popularity, so the crooks converge. It is so important to watch where you use your credit cards (any country). My friends have been recent victims, as was my husband last year. The credit card of my friend was used in only 3 places between July 4th and 11th in Puerto Vallarta. Someone copied her number (then probably had a bogus card made) and started using the card in August in Puerto Vallarta and it seems Guadalajara. Her bank called because she used her card on August 3rd in California and someone used it also in PV the same day. That's how the bank caught the fraud. Sam's club is a popular spot for thieves once they get ahold of your card (or all they need is the number). On August 15, I am going to go to the three places and approach the Owners/managers to alert them that one of the three appears (allegedly) to have a dishonest person that has access to the tourists cards. The business people of PV are honest and do not appreciate their customers getting ripped off as it hurts their reputation. This may get interesting.

Ryberg Aug 5th, 2006 02:37 PM

Seems like there are a lot of these reports coming up lately, so for what it's worth, I'm reposting this in a couple of places.

At least one study (not just a report drawing on anecdotal evidence) presented by a Canadian business research source and drawing on an American source (so not a Mexican entity trying to play down or whitewash a problem) found that

"In comparison to the fraud rates in the US and Canada, MEXICO'S FRAUD RATE IS MUCH LOWER [emphasis added]. The US fraud rate is 1% of credit card sales, followed by Canada with 0.02%, and finally Mexico with less than 0.001% of total credit card sales."

I believe if you do the math on that one you'll get 1,000 times the incidence of fraud in the U.S. as in Mexico.

The same report also includes other interesting results, such as

"Fraud in Mexico City is down by 60% since the new [anti-fraud] legislation in 1999"


"Mexico has the lowest MasterCard fraud average in the Latin American region, 0.05%."

And for those travelling to the Mayan Riviera region, you may wish to note that according to one table, over 1/3 of credit card fraud in this country takes place in Mexico City, while only 6% takes place in the state of Quintana Roo.

You could look it up:
from Strategis report "Credit Card Industry in Mexico" at

Things may well be getting worse. However they're probably getting worse in the States an Canada on this point, as well, and the differences in rate of fraud are impressive. People should be careful not to assume that this is a problem particularly when travelling to Mexico (or other destinations).



mah1980 Aug 5th, 2006 05:43 PM

Yes, but perhaps the figures don't reveal that the majority of the credit card incidents in Mx occur in places frequented by tourists (and probably Americans).

doledrums Aug 5th, 2006 06:09 PM

Mah 1980. I believe you hit it right on the head.

blondlady Aug 5th, 2006 09:04 PM

I am sorry Steve, but to repost the stats is really boring. The point is that no matter where you are traveling one must be careful. PV is my favorite place on earth, but I want my friends to know the credit card thieves are there. I never intended to make Mexico out to be the worst. My bank made a comment to me that I repeated. Sorry, I take it back. (So no need for your stats!) But travelers-- please be careful when using your card. I suggest not to use it unless there is an emergency. Be sure to keep your eye on your statements when you return home.

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