How to avoid being skimmed while paying for gas
A device known as a credit card skimmer was found at an Arlington gas station this week.
The skimmer was found on pump #3 at SmartMart, 652 West Randol Mill Road in Arlington, Monday after a complaint was filed, according to the Texas Department of Agriculture.
Law enforcers removed the skimmer from the pump, according to the Credit Card Skimmer Alert.
These devices — which are used by thieves to gain access to people’s debit and credit cards — have been found at gas stations and ATMs across Texas by state and local law enforcers, who remove them.
Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller is among those asking Texans to be careful and keep an eye out for potential skimmers at any of the more than 400,000 fuel pumps across the state.
“Be aware at the fuel pump,” according to Miller’s alert sent out Tuesday. “If the credit card scanner looks like it has been tampered with, move to another pump or pay inside. If you notice fraudulent charges on your account, contact your financial institution immediately.”
Miller suggests that Texans use the pumps closest to the store, the ones employees see the most.
He also suggests Texans check their phones for “unusual bluetooth signals” with a string of letters or numbers because that might indicate a skimmer. And people also should look for any damage to the credit card reader or the security tape on the pump cabinet to make sure neither are lose or damaged. Any problems should be reported to store employees.
Also, use your credit card — or pay inside with cash — instead of your debit card. Consumers also should save their receipts and keep an eye on bank accounts to make sure there’s no unusual activity after getting gas.
Anyone who thinks they’ve been skimmed, or believes they’ve seen a skimmer, may report problems to the Agriculture Department at 1-800-TELL-TDA.