Larry Martino

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Two Las Vegas senior citizens have been charged with racketeering conspiracy by federal authorities from the Department of Justice. 67-year-old Linden Fellerman and 68-year-old Debra Vogel are facing up to twenty years in prison if convicted on the racketeering charge. Fellerman has also been served with a wire fraud charge which could earn this alleged criminal with up to an additional thirty years in the federal penitentiary.

According to an article written by Jarah Wright on, these two locals were part of a 14-person crew, or “enterprise,” which “found banking information for American victims and then created shell entities that claimed to offer products or services like cloud storage.”

They would then make unauthorized debit transactions from the unsuspecting victims’ accounts. Per Wright’s article, and the court documents that were reviewed for this report, this scheme has been going on for many years, and millions of dollars were stolen.

If nothing else, this just goes to show you that you can’t trust anyone these days. There are cybercriminals in all walks of life. And with more and more security breaches on financial institutions, we must all be more vigilant than ever. It is so easy to just let the bank keep track of our deposits and withdrawals without reconciling that information. It’s all done electronically now, so many people don’t spend any time reviewing all of these charges.

So, federal authorities are urging all of us to spend some time reviewing our bank accounts and financial institution transactions. If you find any unauthorized debits, or you see a transaction you do not recognize, contact your financial institution or bank and report it, or rectify it, before your account is emptied out. Good advice for all of us.

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Larry Martino is the long-time Afternoon Drive personality on 96.3 KKLZ. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of Larry Martino and not necessarily those of Beasley Media Group, LLC.

Scammers Target Vegas Area With Credit Card Scheme, Metro Police Warn

As if there weren’t enough things to worry about. Your credit card information may be stolen by simply using it in local retail stores, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police warn.

Scammers have recently been targeting the Las Vegas area by using EMV (Smart Chip) “skimmers,” according to metro police‘s Twitter.

These “skimmers” are sleek, discrete add-ons to credit card machines that can be easily overlooked. These small devices can collect information from thousands of cards and even steal PIN number information.

The police say when unsuspecting customers insert their cards in a machine, the skimmer will still processes the purchase while simultaneously collecting your card’s data. The customer thinks they made an innocent purchase when in reality, scammers have just collected their credit card information.

Due to the discrete nature of “skimmers,” these devices can stay in place for a long period of time, which makes this a big problem, police said on Twitter. “Skimmers” are commonly found in ATMs, gas station pumps and “unmonitoredpay stations.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, consumers often don’t notice their information was stolen until the bank sends a statement or an overdraft notice.

To avoid being a victim to this scam, here are a few tips to spot these devices so you can protect your financial security.

  • Pull On The PIN Pad, Las Vegas Metro Police Say

    Although “skimmers” are small, these devices are not impossible to find. Las Vegas Metro Police said on Twitter that compromised credit card machines with “skimmers” often stick out and are noticeably different than other PIN pads.

    You can further check to see if there’s a “skimming” device inserted in the machine by pulling on the PIN-pad hood. By pulling on the hood, the skimmer may come loose from the credit card terminal, police said.

  • FBI Says To "Inspect" before Paying

    Skimming | Federal Bureau of Investigation

    Skimming occurs when devices illegally installed on ATMs, point-of-sale (POS) terminals, or fuel pumps capture data or record cardholders' PINs. Criminals use the data to create fake debit or credit cards and then steal from victims' accounts. It is estimated that skimming costs financial institutions and consumers more than $1 billion each year.

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation says consumers should inspect ATMs, point-of-sale (POS) terminals and other card readers before using them. If the machine appears to be crooked, damaged or scratched then you shouldn’t use it.

  • Did You Possible Find A Possible 'Skimmer?'

    Las Vegas Metro Police recommends that if you find a “skimming” device, do not tamper with it. Instead, alert a store employee and call “311.”

    And as always, it’s important to contact your financial institution if your credit card information was stolen or comprised. Be vigilant, pay attention to your online banking app and be safe!