Authorities Seize Skimming DevicesPublished: February 1, 2016
From Louisiana to New England, convenience retailers are finding skimming devices on dispensers.
BATON ROUGE, La. – The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Weights and Measures division, the U.S. Secret Service and local sheriff’s offices continue their investigations into skimming devices found at gasoline pumps.
Since June 2015, 25 skimming devices have been found throughout the state, containing a total of 801 consumer credit and debit card numbers.
“As we hear more and more about this type of crime, our inspectors are removing anything suspect from the gasoline pumps,” said Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain. “Convenience stores are also aware we are out there looking and are alerting the LDAF and their local authorities when they believe something is wrong.”
“We’re now seeing skimming devices that have Bluetooth capability,” he added. “This tells us these crooks are getting more and more tech savvy, making it easier to access the consumer’s personal information.”
Skimming devices are typically easily recognized when the gas pump credit card machines are opened because they are an additional attachment to the machine. However, a new type of device is replacing the entire credit card reader, making detection much harder.
The New England area is also seeing a rash of skimming devices found at pumps.
In Goffstown, New Hampshire, a service technician alerted police to a homemade skimming device found inside the pump at a Circle K location. Police in Hingham, Massachusetts, were alerted to a skimming device found on a pump at a Gulf station. A technician who had been called to repair the card reader discovered the skimming device.
“Through the focused efforts of alert retailers and state inspectors, we are making real headway on this criminal activity,” said Gray Taylor, executive director of Conexxus. “NACS and Conexxus urge all of our membership to keep tagging, inspecting and validating their island payment devices, and double their vigilance should a skimmer be found in their market.”
Conexxus and NACS provide convenience and fuel retailers with resources and tools to proactively initiate and maintain effective payment security procedures that help reduce the occurrence of skimming. In December, Conexxus and NACS hosted a free webinar that highlighted the processes and tools available to protect dispenser terminals from intrusion and skimmers. The webinar was conducted by representatives from Gilbarco Veeder-Root and Wayne Fueling Systems.