I got a couple of links from Manny “the bull” Resores. Manny is from the UK but obviously reads web sites on this side of the Atlantic.
This story concerns an enterprising fellow in Memphis who was operating a parking facility. The only problem was that he wasn’t connected to the parking lot in any way. He just stood there and when people came up to buy a P and D ticket, he would take their money and use a credit card to purchase a ticket, and then hand them the ticket. The credit card was probably stolen. A sharp parker spotted the scam and called the police. Our hero is now parked in jail.
Manny has some advice for the lot operator:
- The credit card software should be changed not to accept more than one or two payments on the same credit card within a certain period of time. This should be relatively easy to do and I remember getting this done in the UK back in the early 90’s
- Pay and display car parks to ensure they are efficiently controlled, should be regularly patrolled every one to two hours by and if this is the case such theft will be a lot more difficult.
- Appropriate signs should be in place informing patrons that payment is only to be made to the machines and not to a person.
- Specially in unattended car parks, operators should have CCTV installed and monitored remotely, this is no longer an expensive item and I believe is a good deterrent to prevent crime. As we know, most folks are pleased to have an extra service in security and crime prevention and would pay a little more to cover the cost of the benefit.
I can add one more point to Manny’s list. The P and D should be on line so stolen cards can be immediately checked and rejected. This would have solved this problem, full stop.