There were red faces at London's Special Branch when its chief had her credit card maxed out by card skimmers.
Janet Williams found out about the scam when her credit card was declined after going over its limit.
It seems that the card was run through a scanner and its information printed onto a new card before being used by the criminals.
"We are not prepared to discuss this because it is a private matter," a police spokeswoman told The Times.
"Ms Williams did identify a fraudulent transaction on her credit card. She reported the matter and it has now been resolved."
Williams has been in the police for over 20 years and was the first woman to head the elite anti-terrorist unit when she was appointed in 2003.
Card skimming is one of the oldest forms of identity theft, thanks to small inexpensive readers that can collect the information stored in the card's magnetic strip and transfer the details to a new card.
However its popularity is on the wane due to the increasing proliferation of chip and Pin card readers. Criminals are less likely to have access to the card and the Pin, and the readers are usually portable so that the card never leaves the owner's sight.
The Association for Payment Clearing Services estimated that card skimming is down by 29 per cent this year, but that overall credit card fraud is up by 20 per cent.
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