SINGAPORE: For more than a year, a Marks & Spencer supervisor noted customers’ credit card details, which he used to buy meals worth almost S$9,000.
Teo Kai Seng, 29, was jailed for three months on Monday (August 29) after pleading guilty to three counts under the Computer Misuse Act. Eight similar counts were considered for sentencing.
The court heard Teo worked at Marks & Spencer from 2016 to 2021. He was promoted to supervisor at the One Raffles Place outlet in March 2020.
At the time of its promotion, Teo began taking credit card details from customers while their card payments were being processed at checkout.
He did this every time he attended to customers at the cash register and there were only two other staff working in the kitchen and office.
Teo would use his cell phone to take a photo of the credit card, then transfer the details to a piece of paper. He then entered them into the Waitrr app, where he had registered an account using his ex-girlfriend’s phone number.
Waitrr allows users to order food online and pay vendors directly. Teo realized that the app did not require a one-time password for transactions and decided to exploit it.
Teo would offer to buy food for his colleagues, claiming that the Waitrr app offered him a 10% discount and he would give them savings.
He paid for the meals using the victims’ credit card details, and his colleagues reimbursed him for their meals in return.
Most of the victims did not ask their banks to send them SMS notifications when transactions were made on their credit cards or savings accounts.
This allowed Teo’s offenses to go unnoticed until October 27, 2020, when a victim’s daughter filed the first police report. Teo was found and arrested on August 24, 2021.
From July 13, 2020 until his arrest, Teo used the credit card details of 11 victims between the ages of 46 and 82, making 450 unauthorized transactions.
Deputy Attorney General Chee Ee Ling asked for three to five months in jail, pointing to the level of premeditation and planning involved in Teo’s offenses.
For each charge, Teo could have been jailed for up to two years, fined up to S$5,000 or both. The maximum penalties are increased to three years in prison and a fine of S$10,000 for repeat offences.