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Taco Bell investigating reports of card skimming at Nipomo location

Posted at 6:37 PM, Feb 21, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-22 21:35:11-05

Some local Taco Bell customers are warning the community about a possible scam after noticing unauthorized charges on their cards.

KSBY spoke to at least three people who say an employee skimmed their credit cards when they went to pay for their Taco Bell order at the restaurant located at 535 W. Tefft Street in Nipomo.

Now, Taco Bell Corporation and the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office are getting involved.

“It’s horrible because it’s one of the last places I would expect it to happen,” said Tony Marks, who says his credit card was skimmed at the Taco Bell in Nipomo.

Marks says he got an email alerting him of a charge from Square, a mobile payment device.

“One of those square card readers that a lot of mobile services carry and it was for a charge at the exact same time that I got my meal at Taco Bell,” Marks said.

His Taco Bell receipt showed a total of $13.97, but this additional charge was for $10.75.

Tony Marks's Taco Bell receipt from February 2, 2019 shows a total charge of $13.97.
Tony Marks’s Taco Bell receipt from February 2, 2019 shows a total charge of $13.97. (Courtesy Tony Marks)
Marks says he got an email notification for a charge of $10.75 from "Swipper no swippen".
Marks says he got an email notification for a charge of $10.75 from “Swipper no swippen”. (Courtesy Tony Marks)

“It was charged at the same exact time, to the minute,” Marks said.

The charge on his bank statement read “Swipper no swipping”.

This is a look at the back to back charges on Marks’s account.
(Courtesy Tony Marks)

Marks says he went back to the restaurant the following day and told a supervisor about the unauthorized charge.

According to him, he was refunded almost the full amount of the $10.75 he was charged but received strange phone calls from someone claiming to be the manager after he had left.

After posting about it on Yelp, Marks realized he wasn’t the only one who had experienced this when another recent customer, Nick Mamaligsa, said the same thing happened to him.

Mamaligsa said he got an email for a charge of $10.75 from a “Swipper no swipping” at the exact same time he bought Taco Bell on February 16.

Mamaligsa says his Taco Bell receipt says 8:22 p.m. which is the same time he got an email for an unauthorized charge. (Courtesy Nick Mamaligsa)
Mamaligsa says he got the same email notifying him of a charge of $10.75 from a “Swipper no swippen”>

Both men say the name on the charge now shows up as something different.

“As of just two days ago, now it shows up as ‘Amazon Prime Membership’ which makes it even harder to see it if you are an Amazon Prime Member,” Marks said.

A third person on Facebook said it happened to her husband.

A spokesperson for the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office says Taco Bell Corporation filed a report Thursday afternoon claiming an employee who’s a minor was skimming credit cards at the restaurant.

Taco Bell Corporation sent KSBY a statement saying, “We take customers’ personal data privacy and security very seriously. The franchise is investigating the situation and will take swift and appropriate action.”

A supervisor at the Taco Bell location told KSBY over the phone that they are checking surveillance footage.

“The employee or employees responsible should be let go or maybe even face criminal charges,” Marks said. “No telling how many people have been scammed without knowing it.”

Marks said he filed a report with the SLO County Sheriff’s Office Thursday afternoon and they are now investigating.

You are encouraged to call authorities if you recently purchased items from this Taco Bell location and believe your card was skimmed.