Credit Card Fraud are Identification Information and property offences. The way in which credit card Identification Information is dealt with can impact on the severity of the crime and any terms of imprisonment. If you are charged with these offences we highly recommend hiring a criminal lawyer to represent you.
Section 192I of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) (the act) states that ‘identification information’ may include information relating to a person or company that is capable of being used to identify them. The act then specifies the following as identification information:
(a) a name or address,
(b) a date or place of birth, marital status, relative’s identity or similar information,
(c) a driver licence or driver licence number,
(d) a passport or passport number,
(e) biometric data,
(f) a voice print,
(g) a credit or debit card, its number or data stored or encrypted on it,
(h) a financial account number, user name or password,
(i) a digital signature,
(j) a series of numbers or letters (or both) intended for use as a means of personal identification, and
(k) an ABN.
Dealing with Identification Information
Section 192J of the act states that it is an offence to deal ‘…in identification information with the intention of committing, or of facilitating the commission of, an indictable offence…’ This carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment.
According to section 192I dealing with identification information includes making, supplying and using the information. Dealing may include the following acts:
- Using another’s credit card details,
- Duplicating another person’s driver’s license,
- Using somebody else’s digital signature without their consent, or
- Other acts which involve the making, supplying and usage of identification information.
It is not enough to deal with financial information. You must also have intended to commit or facilitated the commission of an indictable offence to be found guilty of this offence. Indictable offences are criminal offences of a more serious nature and may include terms of imprisonment. We are able to provide you with specific advice as to whether an offence is indictable.
Possession of identification information
According to section 192K of the act it is also an offence to possess Identification Information with the intention to commit or facilitate an indictable offence. This offence carries a maximum 7 year prison term.
Unlike the dealing with identification offence this offence merely requires you to possess the information. This offence may include circumstances where you have purchased or been given the information from another person.
You must also be found to have intended or facilitated the commission of an indictable offence to be found guilty of this offence. Merely possessing the information without this intention is not a breach of section 192K.
Possession of equipment
Section 192L of the act states that possession of equipment capable of being used to make anything containing identification may also be an offence. In these circumstances it is only an offence if you intended the thing containing the identification information to be made to commit or facilitate an indictable offence. This offence carries a maximum prison term of up to 3 years.
Unlike the other offences no possession or dealing with identification information is required. Instead the offence refers to whether an item is capable of making the information. This may include equipment such as credit card skimmers or hacking devices. Despite this there is still a requirement that you intend to use the manufactured information to commit or facilitate an indictable offence.
Common Indictable Offences linked with credit card fraud
According to Schedule 1 of the Criminal Procedure Act 1986 (NSW) deception and obtaining a financial advantage or causing financial disadvantage are indictable offences where the value of the offence exceeds $5,000.
According to section 192B of the act deception includes any intentional or reckless deception by words or conduct. This includes conduct that causes a computer, machine or electronic device to provide a response that it is not authorised to make.
Identification Information may be used to commit this offence. Where you skim another person’s credit card or savings account and use that information to withdraw money from an ATM, or make purchases online, it may be considered deception. This is because you are not authorised to cause a computer or machine to use somebody else’s money in place of your own.
In these instances a bank account or credit card number is likely to be considered Identification Information. A person engaging in this conduct is likely to be charged with dealing with Identification Information and deception.
Obtaining a financial advantage or causing financial disadvantage
Section 192D of the act stipulates that it is an offence to obtain a financial advantage or cause financial disadvantage. To be guilty of an offence you are required to induce a third person to provide a financial advantage to you or another or cause financial disadvantage to another. Where you have obtained a financial advantage it is an offence to keep that advantage.
This may occur where a person manufactures a fraudulent credit card. Where a person uses such a card in store they are obtaining a financial advantage by failing to use their funds. By providing the card to a retail worker to process the payment you are also inducing them to complete the transaction. Likely charges for this conduct include dealing with identification information and obtaining a financial advantage.
Credit Card fraud and Identity Information offences may carry serious criminal repercussions including a term of imprisonment. George Sten & Co Criminal Lawyers has over 30 years experience in vigorously defending your rights for a successful outcome. Talk to our Credit Card Fraud Lawyers today.