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Chicago Woman's Unemployment Money Stolen In Possible Card Cloning Incident

CHICAGO (CBS) -- A Chicago woman is asking where her unemployment money is after thousands of dollars suddenly vanished from her account, and she said there is absolutely no way someone had access to her debit card.

CBS 2's Tara Molina is Working for Chicago to find out if this is a card cloning issue or something more.

It only takes seconds for a card to be cloned, but Frances said she keeps her card close. She has never shared it, and she has dealt with unemployment fraud before.

When Frances says she keeps her Illinois Department of Employment Services Unemployment debit card close, she means it.

"I keep it underneath my wig and everything, so did somebody walk past me and scan it?"

She didn't want to share her last name in an effort to protect her identity.

She said she went to use the card at the grocery store and that's when she realized it had been compromised.

She called Key Bank, which the state works with to issue debit cards, only to learn the card had been used at ATMs across the north suburbs.

"How did they use my debit card when it was still in my possession?" she said.

"They withdrew $1003. They went back the next day and withdrew $1003," she said.

They left her with less than $100.

"They done took almost $3500," she said.

Frances immediately reported the theft to Chicago Police, who she's asked to ask for photos from those ATMs. She filed a dispute with Key Bank.

She has called the state and is still waiting for help from IDES. But so far, she says no help and no answers from anyone.

So CBS 2 reached out asking about this as a possible card cloning case, with the fraud we know has plagued the state for more than a year now and whether Frances is the only one dealing with it. A spokesperson for Key Bank didn't acknowledge those questions, but said they are aware of continued fraud and they're working closely with law enforcement:

"We are aware of continued reports of fraud and are working closely with federal and local law enforcement. Those who believe that they are a victim of fraud should file a report through your local law enforcement."

Frances said she was saving the money on that card to buy a car. Now she is just hoping for a real answer and some help.

A spokesperson for IDES said this is the first time they have encountered something like this, and for now, this is a reminder to keep your information close and to be very wary of scammers trying to get your personal information. IDES also warns of continued phishing schemes.

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