PCS cards (Prepaid Cash Service) are prepaid, rechargeable and allow you to pay online just like at merchants. Resembling standard credit cards, however they are not linked to no bank account or establishment while giving you the opportunity to have a RIB. They are available online and at tobacconists without having to provide any proof of identity. From there to say that they favor suspicious payments and transfers… Let’s say that if they are practical so as not to be tracked by your bank for example, they have nevertheless been around for a few months scammers best friends.
PCS cards: you will pay for it!
PCS card scams manifest themselves in very different ways, but always with the same purpose: make you pay for an item or service with a PCS coupon. These coupons – worth €20 to €250 – can be purchased from a tobacconist and are originally intended to top up your PCS card. However, crooks ask third parties to pay via these coupons. Just communicate the code to be robbed. Because once the code has been used to recharge the bandit’s card, it’s game over.
From there, the scammers compete in imagination to relieve you. This ranges from your so-called friend stuck abroad with no money, to a rental ad on Le Bon Coin, to the sale of an item on a marketplace or a message on a dating site. Even better, some call you and get pass for someone elsewhether it is someone from your company, or a notary, or even an employee of an administration… All means are good.
Just make the victim pay for a PCS recharge voucher and make them communicate the entered code above. The criminals weave a story around: ” I already got scammed online with a sale, this way is secure, it’s Master Card! Give me the code that I check if it is valid“.
No way to get your money back!
According to Jean-Jacques Latour, Head of Cybersecurity Expertise for the Official Cybervictim Assistance Site Cybermalveillance.gouv.fr questioned by UFC-Que Choisirthis is a way of working “typical of the so-called “grazers” of West Africa (Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, Nigeria) but it can also be perpetrated from North Africa or by French-speakers established in the countries of East, Cyprus, Israel, etc. ». One thing is certain, if you are asked to pay with a PCS voucher, there is 99% chance it’s a scam in the end.
If you have unfortunately fallen into the clutches of the scammer, there is no way to get your money back. You can still file a complaint at the police station who may open an investigation to find the thieves. You can also report the deception on the site Internet-signalement.gouv.fr or by contacting “Info scams” on 0 805 805 817. If that won’t bring back your precious lost euros, it may prevent other people from becoming victims in turn.