Beware of Arch card scam


During this gift-giving season, business owners need to take steps to make sure they don’t get taken by scam.

Several McDonald’s owner/operators have reported over the past several months that they have sold thousands of Arch cards only to discover they were purchased with stolen credit cards.

In a recent instance, a gentleman entered a McDonald’s claiming that he worked for a local church and wanted to purchase several Arch cards to give to the youth group. Unfortunately, the alleged church employee used a stolen credit card – which cost the owner/operator several hundred dollars in loss.

Some thieves are getting more organized, too, operating in groups. In some cases, a female will come into the store and purchase an Arch card with several hundred dollars on it and a few hours later, a male will come in with the same credit card and make another significant purchase.

The thieves often don’t stop with one store, either. Once they have successfully (and fraudulently) purchased the Arch cards, they will typically head up the road to the next store and do the same thing.

While there is no way to fully protect against theft, there are some safety net procedures owner/operators can put into place.

  • Only allow a manager to sell Arch cards;
  • Check the customer’s driver’s license to make sure the name on the identification matches the name on the credit card;
  • Place a limit of $50 or $75 on the sale of Arch cards.
  • If the customer does not have an ID or wants to purchase Arch cards in an amount that exceeds the maximum amount, direct the customer to McDonald’s website to purchase the Arch cards.