Skimmers are illegal credit card readers attached to or inside gas pumps. They are designed to grab data off a cards magnetic stripe and then make a virtual clone that thieves can use to make purchases with.
- Debit Card Users: Never use your pin # at a gas pump (run as a credit card)
- Pay inside rather than at the pump
- Monitor your card activity via the card alert options
- Make sure the gas pump panel is closed
- Avoid credit card readers that look different than other readers nearby (see below)
- Make sure the card reader isn’t movable
This is what they look like:
Internal skimmers look like this:
Never open the gas pump console yourself to look for skimmers. Notify the police if you think something looks suspicious. Never take the skimmers yourself, criminals may be nearby using Bluetooth to copy the data and may be watching.