FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Inspectors with the Kentucky Department of Agriculture say they found a credit card “skimmer” during an inspection of a fuel pump at the BP gas station on the bypass.
The skimmer – an electronic device used to capture data from consumers’ credit cards – was removed and turned over to Richmond police.
Inspectors discovered the device during a routine inspection.
“This device was discovered by our inspectors as part of their everyday job duties,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “We took on this responsibility at no additional cost to Kentucky taxpayers. This discovery saved consumers thousands of dollars in fraudulent charges that could have been made with data stolen by the use of this device.”
Jason Glass, assistant director of the KDA’s Division of Regulation and Inspection, said card readers on fuel pumps are especially susceptible to tampering because pumps often are located out of sight of an attendant.
Glass said retailers are taking action to prevent credit card skimming by installing proprietary locks on pumps, using security tape to seal the pumps, and logging the numbers on the tape to make sure the seal hasn’t been broken and replaced. Some pumps shut down when they are entered unlawfully, Glass said. Credit card companies are deploying technology to make credit cards harder to skim, he said.
Glass said consumers can help themselves by looking for signs that a pump has been tampered with, such as locks that appear to have been compromised, doors that may have been pried open, and security tape that is broken or doesn’t adhere to the pump.
Consumers may report suspected tampering to the retailer, law enforcement, or the Kentucky Department of Agriculture. To submit a report to the KDA, call (502) 573-0282 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the retailer’s name and location, the pump number, and the fuel grade.