More than a year after they burst onto the scene in a reign of terror, gas pump credit card skimmers continue to be an issue in Michigan according to the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development. Agency officials are encouraging motorists to continue to be vigilant to assure they are protecting their identity.
Department Director Jamie Clover Adams says, "Approximately 70 credit card skimmers have been found and removed from gas pumps statewide," since the first skimmer was discovered in the Grand Rapids area a little over a year ago. Skimmers were found in several Berrien County locations as well. Clover Adams says, "Credit card skimmers will not be tolerated in Michigan. MDARD's Weights & Measures inspectors, gas station owners, and law enforcement remain on the hunt for skimmers to protect the state's consumers from fraud."
Card card skimmers, which can't be seen from outside the pump, can be installed in seconds. Criminals use keys to open the pumps quickly, insert the skimmers, and then leave. The skimmers then copy the card information of consumers allowing criminals to make fraudulent purchases with that information.
Local, state and federal regulators, various law enforcement agencies, and gas station owners continue to be on the lookout at gas pumps across Michigan as part of the ongoing efforts to crack down on consumer credit card information being hacked by credit card skimmers.
Clover Adams says, "Some steps station owners can take, and have taken, to protect their patrons from cyber-criminals are changing locks, using tamper-proof security tape, and security cameras. MDARD is also encouraging station owners to increase their regular dispenser inspections."
With the Labor Day weekend at hand, motorists are encourage to be especially vigilant during a time when there will be lots of activity at gasoline service stations all across the state.