Sunday, January 16, 2011

"These things happen"

In November, me and B were on our way to Zurich, waiting for a connecting flight in the Guarulhos airport, and B went to the ATM from Caixa (a federal bank where he has his account) to grab some cash. He did that.

Once he was back from Zurich, he learned his account had been cracked by some people using the ATM at the Guarulhos Airport. Ironic thing is that this ATM is just by the side (and I really mean door to door) of the police station at the airport. The people took around 1500 USD from his account. The bank detected the fraud and blocked his account. They said they would give his money back. As far as I know, he is still waiting.

Today, I went for manicure at the airport, since I had around 10 hours of waiting time between connecting flights. On my way to the saloon, which is next door to the police station as well, but to the other side, I saw two guys doing "stuff" at the ATM. They were talking as who take instructions from the mobile phone conversation they had, and typing some numbers, waiting, doing it again, going to the next ATM, doing the same, talking on the phone. And I couldn't help but wonder "What the hell are they doing there?". Probably they were again, doing some shit to the ATM and to some other people's bank accounts.

I got my manicure and pedicure done. It took me around 1 hour. When I got out of there I was surprised that one of the dudes was still (or again) there at the ATMs. Same thing: talking on the phone, getting instructions, doing whatever, typing stuff on the numeric keyboard, walking to the next ATM, doing the same, and so on.

I stopped at the Crepe shop which is around the same area, and stayed there paying attention to what the guy was doing. He finished his "stuff" and walked away.

After I was done with my Crepe, and was sure the dude was gone, I went to the police station.

I told them my boyfriend had his account cracked a few weeks ago from activity in that same ATM, and that I thought it was a bit ironic the fact that the ATM is next door to the police station. I asked whether they ever paid attention to the "activity" in the ATM. Also I told them about the dudes that probably spent 1 hour at the ATM machines today while I was getting my finger nails done.

There were 5 cops at that room. Not sure if there were more in the back rooms. They were all watching TV, except by a woman who was doing something on the computer.

They said it was pretty impossible to know what was going on there because they had other things to do, and that the staff doing machine maintenance in the ATMs was very likely to be involved in something like that. He said they knew it happened twice in that particular ATM in the past month. The dude didn't seem embarrassed at all by the fact that the ATM in question was just by the side of the police station where he is paid to be a policeman at.

And then he said "You know, these things happen".

I wonder when the police in Sao Paulo stopped feeling that crime is the problem their jobs is meant to solve.

After that, I left the station, and went walking very fast passed the passport control, where I knew my security would no longer be in those people's hands.