In previous posts I highlighted the potential risk of crime on trains as smart tickets become more commonplace. I also reported how my local train company, Southern, seems reluctant to protect passengers from this type of crime, such as ensuring all genuine staff have photo IDs clearly out on display.
British Transport Police recently reported that 6 train company employees carried out a ticket scam by selling fraudulent Oyster cards and keeping the money for themselves. They have been arrested and jailed.
Whilst in this instance, they were employees of South West Trains rather than Southern, this could happen with any train company. This incident highlights why it is important for train companies to make sure their genuine staff are clearly identified, as well as putting in place safeguards to prevent staff from defrauding passengers and monitoring employee behaviour to spot where this type of crime is being committed.
Although this is a different type of fraud to the risks I previously reported, it does emphasise the concerns around modern electronic payment methods, and the need for passengers to be alert to the potential for fraud when using them.
Similar types of Oyster top-up fraud were reported by the Metro last year.