A FRAUDSTER went on a spending spree with a stolen bank card belonging to a Millport businesswoman.

The culprit spent over £110 after visiting three Largs charity shops and other businesses in town before it was finally declined at Morrisons.

Round Island Cafe owner Cindy Meikle Groves dropped the card near the ferry terminal after travelling over to the town from Cumbrae on Thursday.

The card was used at the local Salvation Army, Cancer Research and and British Foundation charity branches.

Cindy, who is the owner of The Round Island Cafe in Millport, explained: "I dropped my card outside Costa or thereabouts but unfortunately instead of handing it in, the person who picked mine up went on a spending spree.

"Thankfully, the bank fraud team picked up on it at the same time I realised I’d lost the card. I have to say they were on the ball.

"I didn't know I had dropped the card and was heading to IKEA in Glasgow when I got a message from my bank saying that there had been unusual activity on my account."

Cindy hit out at the cruel thief, adding: "I think it was appalling to use it in charity shops. The person really stole from me then stole from them too.

"The card only allows so many transactions in a short period of time before the authorities are alerted and thankfully they were on to it.

"I had used the bank card at the ferry office to buy our return tickets and it then got used another five times before being declined. The Bank of Scotland was great and I managed to get all my money back, but it is a worry as it shows you how easily a card can be used if it is dropped."

There has been a rise in contactless card use since the coronavirus pandemic, with less cash being exchanged.

All customers are told to cancel their bank cards quickly if they have lost it or report it using a mobile banking app

Banks also advise that customers should regularly check their accounts for any unusual transactions and report any suspected fraud immediately.

Action Fraud is the UK’s national reporting centre for fraud and cyber crime and advise people to look after their bank cards and card details at all times, and try not to let your card out of your sight when making a transaction.

For more details, go to www.actionfraud.police.uk/a-z-of-fraud/bank-card-and-cheque-fraud