Avoiding credit card skimmers at the gas pump
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Filling up the gas tank is so common, we can become complacent, but you need to beware in order to avoid credit card fraud.
Many times when filling up our gas tanks, we’re in a rush to get somewhere but Clay Ingram with AAA Alabama says you need to pause and take a moment to better protect yourself.
Gas skimmers are devices that thieves attach over card slots at gas pumps. They can be used to save and store credit card information, but there are simple things to avoid falling victims to these.
You may notice many pumps have serial-numbered security stickers. If this is ripped, someone may have tampered with it. Avoid these at all possible!
Ingram also says going inside to pay is the safest option but if you can’t, make sure to use a credit card instead of a debit card. He adds there are also certain pumps less likely to have a skimmer.
“Typically when we do see these skimmers attached to the pump, they usually do them on the pumps that are furthest from the line of sight from inside the store so the furthest from the front door of the store,” said Ingram. “So if you have a choice, use the pump that’s a little closer to the door as well and that might offer a little bit of protection as well.”
He encourages you to inspect the card scanner before swiping your card. If it looks like someone tampered with it, use a different pump and but tell the gas station attendant right away.
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