With the increase in fraudulent gas pump activity being reported in Southern Indiana, Law Enforcement launched an investigation into this matter concerning how residents’ bank accounts are being drained after visiting fueling stations.
The Scott County Sheriff’s Office received a telephone call from a representative of a local bank asking for assistance in locating Identity Thieves that are compromising customers account information. This prompted Local and State Authorities to physically inspect all gas pumps located at the Shell Station in Scottsburg. During the inspection, an unauthorized electronic device, placed inside of the gas pump, was discovered and subsequently removed.
The investigation into the crime is ongoing and evidence is being collected to strengthen the case against the thieves.
Sheriff Mc Clain stated that there are a couple known ways that your account information is being compromised at the pump.
- Thieves are installing look alike devices over the original card reader which may be undetectable to the untrained eye; when you swipe your card, the information is collected by the thieves and used to purchase goods and services which will eventually so up on your statement.
- Thieves are gaining entry into the gas pump and installing a card reader computer chip (like the one found locally) which captures account numbers and stores them on the device. The device typically is left inside the pump for several days and then retrieved.
Sheriff Mc Clain further stated to better protect your financial information while at the pump, take the time to examine the card reader. If it appears suspicious, don’t use it and report the problem to the station manager and authorities. Also, look for the tamper proof seals which indicates that the panel has not be opened by an unauthorized persons. And finally, use gas pumps that are located in the center instead of the outer perimeter; using the enter pumps increases the chance that the transaction will be recorded on video surveillance.