SCAM ALERT: Fake QR code stickers on parking meters

The Better Business Bureau said there has been an increase in scams this summer involving QR codes in public parking lots.

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The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department posted on X Thursday that several cases have been reported in jurisdictions outside the Queen City.

Thieves are placing fake QR code stickers over existing ones at parking meters and kiosks.

The unknowing victims scan the code and are sent to a website to pay using their email addresses and credit cards.

“You don’t receive proof of parking, but you may notice a small amount charged to your credit card,” BBB officials said. “You assume that you’ve been charged for parking. A few weeks later, however, you noticed another charge on your credit card.”

The fee has nothing to do with parking and is a recurring charge from an unrelated company posing as the city’s parking fee service. The QR code was fake, and your information is now in the hands of a scammer.

How to avoid impostor QR scams:

  • Pay for parking directly through the meter.

  • Watch out for short links. Check the domain.

  • Don’t download QR code scanner apps. Use the built-in scanner on your phone.

  • Look for evidence of tampering.

  • Install a QR scanner with added protection.

For more information:

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