Federal officials say scammers are stealing credit card numbers, social security cards and personal information without their victims knowing.
Secret Service agent, Russell Nelson explains, "Employees of many retail establishments have used a small device able to hide in the palm of your hand, where they can swipe your credit card without your knowledge or belief."
Representatives from five different federal agencies kicked off /*Consumer Protection Week*/ by warning consumers about fake checks and social security fraud.
"There is no legitimate reason anyone would give you a check or money order to deposit and ask you to wire them money in return," U.S. Attorney George Holding said.
Scammers can physically steal your personal information by getting at your purse or wallet. They can also get your personal information from your computer if you buy something online.
Officials stress that you should always shred personal information before throwing it away and don't give your information over the phone. "The only person who is asking you for your personal information over the telephone is a scammer," Holding said.