Watch CBS News

Allegheny Co. Small Business Owner Stuck With Bill After Credit Card Fraud

MONROEVILLE, Pa. (KDKA) -- The struggles of this past year forced some small business owners to pivot and get creative.

For many, that included switching to an e-commerce site and relying entirely on online sales. And like with most things, criminals weren't far behind.

KDKA's Meghan Schiller talked to one Monroeville man who fell victim to fraud and now says he's stuck with a bill.

Eric Wenning sat at his computer on Monday feeling dumbfounded.

"There is a lawsuit, a lawsuit there, a lawsuit there," he said.

He's digging deeper into the companies that process his company's credit card authorizations after criminals targeted his site.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

"There were over 34,000 transactions in two minutes that was stopped," said Wenning.

Eric's wife, Heather, showed KDKA the attempted charges, all flagged for fraud.

"If all of the transactions went through in two minutes, it would have been over a half-million in sales. But they're all fraud, all stolen credit cards," said Wenning.

He thought his bank's fraud protection saved the day, only to receive a bill from the outside companies he uses to process his credit card authorizations.

"A couple of weeks later, we get this huge bill for like $20,000 for processing these numbers, but nothing was processed. It was an authorization just like a knock on the door," Eric said.

Fees for credit card purchases that he said never went through. Now he's wondering: "Who else is dealing with this?"

"How many other ma-and-pop shops got fees of say $100 or maybe $500 or $1,000 that just paid it because they didn't know any better?" Eric said.

KDKA reached out to the third-party companies involved but didn't hear back with an answer by news time.


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.