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Detroit Lake police pinpoint source of local credit card fraud

By Paula Quam

DETROIT LAKES, Minn. – Local law enforcement officials are closing in on the wave of credit card fraud that hit Detroit Lakes late last month.

Detroit Lakes police Investigator Eric Bergren said they have identified the source of the compromise that led to more than 250 fraudulent credit card charges in the area.

“That compromise has been addressed and taken care of, so right now the second aspect of the case is trying to identify the person or persons responsible for that compromise,” Bergren said.

Detroit Lakes police are working with banks, fraud departments and the U.S. Secret Service in trying to track down the perpetrators.

Bergren said that although most people associate the Secret Service with presidential or dignitary protection, it is also heavily involved in fraud cases involving banks and commerce.

Although many of the local fraud victims bank at Bremer Bank, Bergren said the compromise was not at the bank level – it occurred at a local business.

“I’m not ready to release what business yet because we are still investigating, but as soon as we get all of the information we need, we’ll give it to the public,” he said.

Although Bergren said the fraud cases have stopped locally, he warns that the latest Target cases are similar to the one that hit Detroit Lakes, and that residents should continue checking their credit card statements and report any suspicious activity to their financial institutions immediately.

“And there are different security packages that banks and credit cards offer, so I would probably look into something like that,” said Bergren, who added that to his knowledge, all the fraud victims in the Detroit Lakes area got reimbursed from their banks.