Starbucks responds to reports of gift cards being drained

A post on consumer advocate Bob Sullivan’s blog claimed that hackers were stealing funds from Starbucks gift card and mobile payment accounts. A company spokeswoman offered some advice for customers.

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Starbucks has responded to reports that credit card hackers have been stealing gift card information and using people’s mobile payment feature without permission.

Bob Sullivan broke the story on his blog:

Criminals are using Starbucks accounts to access consumers’ linked credit cards. Taking advantage of the Starbucks auto-reload function, they can steal hundreds of dollars in a matter of minutes. Because the crime is so simple, can escalate quickly, and the consumer protections controlling the transaction are unclear, I recommend all Starbucks consumers immediately disable auto-reload on the Starbucks mobile payments and gift cards.

A Reddit thread (to be taken with a grain of salt) details customer experiences with the scam, with some reporting up to $150 stolen.

Experts have been advising mobile app users to disable the auto reload feature, which directly links to your credit card information.

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