Skimming Device Found At North Country Gas Station
A skimming device has been discovered connected to a gas pump in Ogdensburg and authorities say there are likely others.
A skimmer is a device made to be attached to the mouth of a credit card reader. It secretly swipes credit and debit card information when bank customers slip their cards into the machines found at an ATM, gas pumps, even RedBox.
One of the skimming devices was found connected to a pump at an Ogdensburg gas station.
Newzjunky published the public safety warning issued by the Ogdensburg City Police Department:
"On the date of November 30, 2017, the Ogdensburg Police Department opened an investigation at the Sunoco Gas station located at 301 Champlain Street, Ogdensburg, NY.
On the aforementioned date, a gas pump maintenance worker was checking the pumps at the said Sunoco store. While checking the pumps, he did find a skimming device, which is used for stealing Credit and Debit Card information.
Since that date, there have been several complaints filed with both the Ogdensburg Police Department and the St. Lawrence County Sherriff’s Department, that people have had their cards compromised and money taken from their accounts. It is not yet clear, of the time frame that the skimming device has been at the pumps, but anyone who has paid with their cards at any gas station in the St. Lawrence County area is recommended to do routine checks on their accounts.
The device that was found is a device that is placed inside the pump it’s self, and is unable for anyone to see. Everyone should use caution anytime they use their cards at gas pumps, it is always safer to pay inside the store."
We should take basic precautions to protect against skimming at ATMs, gas stations, and other vulnerable card reader locations. Here are a few tips from the FBI:
- Check for any visible signs of tampering on or around the gas pump or ATM.
- Does anything move when you push it? ATMs and gas pumps are solidly constructed and don’t have any loose parts. Pull on the card reader to make sure it is attached. See if the keyboard is securely connected and just one piece.
- Cover your hand while you enter the number sequence on the PIN pad.
- Avoid ATMs and gas stations that don’t see a high volume of traffic. Criminals are more likely to install skimmers at ATMs and gas stations that aren’t in busy locations.
- Odds of becoming a victim of a skimmer is higher on the weekend than during the week, since it’s harder for customers to report suspicious ATMs to the bank. Criminals typically install skimmers on Saturdays or Sundays and then remove them before the banks reopen on Monday.
- Use an ATM at an inside location (less access for criminals to install skimmers).
- If your card isn’t returned after the transaction or after hitting “cancel,” immediately contact the financial institution that issued the card.