The Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC) Risk Management Team has alerted the agent community to a spike in fraud leading up to this weekend’s holiday. “With Labor Day nearly upon us, do not let what we hope is brisk business tempt you into letting your guard down," ARC said. "The price you pay may be more than one person’s vacation—it could be your business!”
“Recently reported incidents have involved actual or purported outside sales agents booking and issuing e-tickets with what turned out to be falsified documentation (check birthdates and look at pictures—is the person really only 25 or does the signature match?) and forms of payment," ARC said in a statement, urging agents consider the following guidelines:
• Be careful about granting access to ticketing knowing that you—not the outside sales agent— are responsible for the transactions issued under your ACN.
• Know your representatives well. Trust but verify. They represent your business and your reputation. If you have not heard from someone for quite awhile and business comes seemingly out of the blue, be cautious.
• Review your IAR report early each day for spikes in sales from known or unknown outside sales agents and for high risk itineraries (for example, international departures to and from West African destinations) and high-dollar tickets.
• If you find compromised credit cards or fraudulent IDs, void the ticket through your GDS to receive the ESAC code from the carrier’s e-ticket database if possible or contact the validating carrier for assistance.
• Verify documentation and forms of payment (one common denominator this week has been a fraudulent “Barclay’s” Visa and/or MasterCard) and know the “Red Flags.” Let your experience serve you and listen to your intuition as well.
ARC recommends checking out ARC’s online resources at ARC’s Red Flags at www.arccorp.com/news/news_avoid_fraud.html. Agents with questions or information regarding possible fraud can contact ARC at 703-816-8137 or [email protected].