Statewide crackdown underway on gas pump card reader fraud
A new statewide effort to crack down on illegal credit and debit card skimmers at gas pumps is now underway.
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Tuesday that the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Weights and Measures Bureau is conducting the states first-ever training and sweep of gas station dispensers to proactively protect consumers and gas station owners.
The training is to help identify the skimmers, which can be attached to ATMs or credit card processing devices to steal the credit card and PIN numbers of customers.
The credit scoring company FICO estimates about 30 percent of all credit card fraud happens at point-of-sale locations such as gas pumps, and government and private research has indicated it costs consumers between $3 billion and $6 billion a year.
Credit card fraud is a nightmare that could have a long-lasting impact on a victims finances and credit rating, Cuomo said in a statement. With this aggressive new action, were aiming to crackdown on this fraud before it starts by capturing these scammers in the act, and protecting the financial future of thousands of New Yorkers.
In the last several weeks, inspectors have spot-checked approximately 500 of the approximately 40,000 gas dispensers across the state and found about 10 skimming devices in Western New York.
The Department of Weights and Measures Bureau said in order to protect themselves from falling victim to skimming devices on gas pumps, they should look out for the following:
*A keypad thats raised above the surface of the device.
*A card scanner that seems loose, which is a sign of a skimmer thats snapped on top of the actual card scanner.
*A tiny camera attached to the top or sides of the device, sometimes with temporary lighting, to capture credit card numbers and PIN entries on video.