DECATUR -- A couple of women grabbed a bite at Taco Casa in Decatur after Bible study a few weeks ago.
Within days, their credit card numbers were paying for items in Angola, Africa. The same thing and worse just happened to lots of people in Wise County.
Lydia Moseley’s $2,300 bank account disappeared.
"Yes, completely drained it and went into the negative," she said.
Moseley is administrative assistant to Wise County Sheriff David Walker. He got hit, too.
"I was actually in Fort Worth to use my card to buy an anniversary gift and the bank called and said, 'Are you in California?' I said, 'No, I'm in Fort Worth,'" Walker said.
The calls started coming just after Labor Day -- almost all from people who ate at Taco Casa in Decatur.
In some cases it took just eight hours for their debit or credit card information to be used in Las Vegas, Jamaica, California, Kentucky, Houston, and other places.
“We all work hard for our money,” Moseley said. “And just to know someone is out there taking advantage of you that way, it really does make you mad."
Tuesday afternoon, local investigators met with bankers, the Secret Service, and a Texas Ranger. They think thieves hacked the restaurant's card-processing system, but they say the hackers could be anywhere on the planet.
"We've heard some people have lost $23-to-$28 thousand," Decatur Police Chief Rex Hoskins said.
Two of his officers are victims.
Investigators say they have 30-to-40 fraud cases so far, but they estimate nearly a thousand card numbers were compromised. Banks have replaced lost funds.
The sheriff said Taco Casa has toughened its card security, and he hopes other merchants do, too.
And he speaks from experience when he advises all of us to check your statements.