- Dec 18, 2009
Tap-and-go credit cards contributing to increase in crime stats, Victoria Police say - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Tap-and-go credit cards are one of the main factors behind a 5 per cent increase in Victorian crime rates, according to the latest statistics released by police.
The state's Chief Commissioner, Ken Lay, said the number of deceptions - including when thieves fraudulently used other people's credit cards - had increased by 11,600 and impacted on overall crime rates.
But credit card company MasterCard has disputed this, saying industry data shows there has been no increase in fraud as a result of tap-and-go technology.
The figures released by Victoria Police compare the 12 months to March 2014 with those from the previous year.
"One of the main drivers over the last little while have been deceptions and these tap-and-go [credit] cards," Mr Lay said.
"We're seeing many, many theft of motor cars, handbags and burglaries where people are looking for these cards, are getting hold of them and within hours of getting them, they're going into stores and using them.
"So you're getting this flow-on effect... mainly because of these types of offences."
Speaking on 774 ABC Melbourne, he said police were not consulted before tap-and-go credit cards were introduced and he regretted their introduction.
"They are chewing up an enormous amount of police resources. The banks build in a margin where they absorb the cost of the theft... but this is just another sign of some of the changing offending that we're facing."
However, Mr Lay did admit he uses a tap-and-go card all the time.
"As a customer they're very, very handy, but for a criminal... [they're] also very handy," he said.