Deputies investigate credit card fraud at Upstate, NC fast food - - Columbia, South Carolina

Deputies: Credit card info at Upstate, NC fast food restaurants stolen

A pile of credit cards. (File/FOX Carolina) A pile of credit cards. (File/FOX Carolina)
A local Bojangles sign. (Dec. 12, 2013/FOX Carolina) A local Bojangles sign. (Dec. 12, 2013/FOX Carolina)
PICKENS, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Authorities in Pickens County and western North Carolina are investigating claims that dozens of people reported their credit card information was compromised at local fast food restaurants.

Law enforcement officials said hackers somehow got into computer systems at local Bojangles restaurants, stole card information and are creating duplicate fake cards to sell on the black market.

"The victims are still in possession of their physical cards, however, their card numbers were being utilized throughout the United States and in some cases internationally," Pickens County Sheriff's Office spokesman Chuck James said.

The claims began after some Bojangles restaurants in western North Carolina and possibly some in Pickens County experienced the same problem. Bojangles confirmed credit card information may have been compromised at locations in Hendersonville and Waynesville, NC, in Pickens, SC, and Newport, TN.

"We are actively working to ensure we have all the facts in this case," a statement from Bojangles said.

The chain also said the cards were compromised only at restaurants operated by a single franchisee, saying that operator "has taken immediate steps to ensure the security of customer data."

Those steps include switching to a dial-up method for processing credit card transactions, working closely with law enforcement and banks to determine which restaurants were impacted, and hiring third parties to review their computer systems.

Law enforcement officials said it's important to take extra caution as you use your checking or credit card anywhere.

"The best thing to do is use cash," Waynesville Police Chief Bill Hollingsed said.

"The more frequently you check your bank account, the earlier you can detect it," James said.

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