Saturday, November 18, 2017

TRINI TRICKSTERS *

Credit card fraud: Caribbean Airlines losing $3.2m a year

criminal activity: Michael Quamina, centre, Vice Chairman of Caribbean Airlines Ltd (CAL) responds to a question during yesterday's sitting of the Joint Select Committee in Parliament. —Photo courtesy The Office of the Parliament of T&T


Trinidadians are among credit card tricksters involved in the unauthorised use of people's credit card information to purchase airline tickets which is causing state-owned Caribbean Airlines to lose about TT$3.25 million annually.

This was revealed by CAL officials as they appeared before a Joint Select Committee of Parliament yesterday. CAL Vice-Chairman Michael Quamina also told the JSC that the airline was in line to return to profitability “within 12 to 24 months”.

Responding to a question from Committee member Fazal Karim, CAL's Senior Manager, Financial and Revenue Accounting, Adrian Agarrat, revealed that “criminal activity against the airline in which persons were using other people's credit card information” to book and pay for flights through the airline's website was costing CAL US$40,000 (TT$270,000) a month.

He said the highest incidence of this fraud was at four points of entry — Trinidad (to New York); Kingston (to New York); Guyana (to North America) and “out of Caracas”, the latter of which was being addressed through the immigration department.

Agarrat said the airline was looking at a system to “prevent the frequency” of this problem and that there was a team at the airline “working every day to mitigate the impact” of this practice.

 

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