Ordering pizza? Scammers are now targeting you and your favorite pizza place

It's a new scam that targets your favorite pizza restaurant, and it impacts business owners and customers.

The Better Business Bureau of Eastern North Carolina issued a warning on this scam. Alyssa Parker with the BBB says this scam is making its way across the country and it could only be a matter of time before it finds its way into our area. The thieves are after the customer's credit card information.

How it works:

A scammer walks into a restaurant and asks to use the phone to make an emergency call. Shortly after they leave, the business realizes the phones aren't ringing. When management calls the phone company, they learn their phone line had been rerouted to an untraceable number.

When future customers attempt to place an order by telephone, scammers are then able to collect credit card information while posing as an employee of the pizza place.

Parker adds, "Unfortunately this is a really difficult scam to identify ahead of time or while it's taking place."

The BBB offers the following tips for protecting your credit card information:

  • Look for unexplained withdrawals, charges, and accounts. Review your bank account and credit card statements regularly. Look for unfamiliar charges, accounts, or withdrawals. Know when your bills are due; one tip-off for identity theft is when you stop receiving certain bills.
  • Request a new card if you notice unauthorized charges. Fraudulent charges mean your card information has been compromised. Beware, thieves may make small charges to verify an account is active so be on the lookout. Stay on the safe side and request a new card. Remember to check statements regularly and carefully.
  • Activate text alerts. Contact your credit card company to be notified by text when charges are posted to the credit card account. Monitor balances over the phone by calling the number on the back of your card.
  • Be sure to always use a credit card. You might be tempted to use a debit card instead of a credit card since it is not a large amount of money. Always use a credit card if possible since they usually provide additional protection that debit cards don't always have.
  • Be in the know. It is important to know what scams are happening, especially in your area. You can always be aware of local scams by checking out the BBB Scam Tracker at bbb.org/scamtracker.
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