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Published November 24, 2011, 10:07 PM

Credit Card Scams Halt Black Friday Shoppers

GRAND FORKS, ND (WDAZ-TV)- Some people are gearing up for the biggest shopping day of the year, while others are left in the dust with their credit information stolen.

GRAND FORKS, ND (WDAZ-TV)- Some people are gearing up for the biggest shopping day of the year, while others are left in the dust with their credit information stolen.

Be careful the next time you answer your phone. It could be a machine claiming to be your credit card company and that could leave you in the hole.

You may be safer keeping your savings under the mattress. Grand Forks residents are victims of the latest crime in the region--credit card scam.

"You don't know who's got it and what they're going to do with it so you're stressed running around trying to cancel everything," said Kyle Fenton, a shopper.

"Pretty horrible, I guess this is the one time we try to get out and shop and do most of our shopping the next couple days," said Rocky Ritterman, a shopper.

People in the region are receiving phone calls saying their credit card has been locked.

"They are then instructed at some point to enter in their debit card information and at that point their debit card information is basically scammed and their number then is compromised," said Sgt. Jay Middleton of the Grand Forks Police Department.

"She said this is a notification that your visa credit card has been stopped or halted--put on hold," said Mary Sand, a witness of one of these scams.

Mary Sand received one of these calls, thought it sounded questionable, and hung up the phone.

"I was in my kitchen and the phone rang and the call sounded very legitimate, very authentic," said Mary Sand.

This can not only hinder holiday shopping, but put it out of the question as well.

"My children presents, my grandchildren, my son-in-law. I wouldn't be able to buy anything. I wouldn't even be able to feed my family without my credit card," said Camille Bass, a shopper.

"I think it's pretty low. All of us work hard for our money. I guess at least I do and I'd like to spend my money on the people I care the most about," said Rocky Ritterman.

The police want to remind people to not release any card information over the phone.

"Legitimate companies will not ask for credit card information. The only time you should give out your credit card information is if you actually initiate the call to the company itself," said Sgt. Jay Middleton.

"Sometimes it's hard to remember that when the call sounds so authentic," said Mary Sand.

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