BAKERSFIELD, CA - Members of a local credit union think they are part of a scam. Some Kern Schools Federal Credit Union patrons say someone has been trying to buy groceries in Canada with customers' Bakersfield-based cards.
It's happened to at least three members. The credit union says it's had no complaints. But, is warning customers to watch out.
"It was just a normal day," said Gabriel Hernandez of Bakersfield. "I went out to a lunch break to get some fast food. I went to use my card and my card was declined."
It was declined, according to the credit union, because Hernandez's Kern Schools card was placed on a security hold. That's because the day before someone tried to charge $101 to it at Mona Fine Foods, a Middle Eastern grocery store in Canada.
"It's alarming," said Hernandez.
What was more alarming is that Hernandez wasn't the only one hit.
"I came home to find out the exact same story happened to my brother," said Hernandez.
According to Hernandez, it was the same amount, same Canadian grocery store, just one day earlier.
"We don't live together. We don't have the same address," said Hernandez. "We don't go to the same places."
Even more disturbing, when one of the brothers was in line at Kern Schools Federal Credit Union, other members told him they experienced the same charge.
"I think something definitely fishy is going on. Someone, somehow was able to see account numbers at the same time," said Hernandez.
The credit union says it wasn't aware of the suspected scam until Tuesday because it outsources a company to track fraudulent charges.
"Kern Schools, like other financial institutions, uses a network," said Michael George, Sr. Vice President of Operations and Marketing.
It's a network that Kern Schools plans to use to track down the root of the problem because the credit union believes this is a scam.
"The activity is fraudulent," said George.
Fraudulent, but fortunately stopped before any harm was done to Hernandez and his brother.
"I'm looking on the bright side that nothing was taken. I think I am going to be looking at my accounts a lot better. That's really the best option I can do," said Hernandez.
If something like this happened to you, call Kern Schools at 833-7900 or visit a branch in person.