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How to avoid becoming a victim of fraud at the gas station

Фото: Depositphotos

Refueling a car, you risk giving scammers access to your bank account or credit card.

Gas stations are the main goal of criminals who use skimmers (readers) to obtain credit card data, writes The Washington Post.

Almost every day, the police discover secretly installed illegal devices at gas stations throughout the country.

Skimmers work on the same principle as legal bank card scanners, but they are secretly installed inside automatic payment machines at gas stations to steal the financial data of people using them.

The devices are placed by criminals either inside the machines (but in this case they must be opened), or outside the machines, by using a special overlay on the card reader. One device can scan and memorize data from 30 to 100 cards per day.

Learn some tips to help you keep your financial data safe from gas station scams.

Use cards with PIN codes

According to law enforcement and analysts, customers conducting a card without a pin code have a greater chance in 4 that their data will be stolen. Such signed transactions do not take place in real time, and the PIN code provides a higher level of data security.

Avoid using old speakers.

Older speakers easier to open and implement a skimmer. Newer speakers have anti-tamper technology.

Check if the column is damaged

Thieves install skimmers, opening the speakers and placing the device inside. To resist the fraudsters, the gas stations sealed the columns and automatic machines for the calculation with a special tape. If you see that the seal is broken, you should not use this machine for payment, you must also inform the operator.

External skimmers, which are installed on top of the existing keyboard, can be noticed by drawing attention to the height of the keyboard above the device panel by calculation. You can also check the roundness of the keyboard with your finger or fingernail.

The most difficult to find new skimmers working on Bluetooth, because they can be completely hidden inside the pumps.

There is an application to protect against skimmers.

Some refills use the app. Skimdefend together with special inscriptions NamS-tamper-alert, to track attempts to place on the columns of additional devices.

What to do if you suspect that the column is equipped with a skimmer

The client must alert the petrol station operator, who should immediately close the column and call a technician to check it. Militiamen advise that no one, including a technician, touch or remove the device, it is better if the police or the FBI, which sometimes connects to such investigations, do so.

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