Another card skimmer found in Catawba County. Officials say small towns are targets

MAIDEN, NC (WBTV) - Another credit card skimmer has been discovered on a gas pump in the Town of Maiden.

It's the third skimmer found in the past few weeks and the second at the pumps outside of the Circle K convenience store.

Maiden Police Investigator Josh Stikeleather says the newest devices are more hi-tech than ones found elsewhere in the past.

Instead of replacing or covering the factory card reader, the new device attaches to it inside the machine. A small bluetooth transmitter can store and then send data that is collected. The crook doesn't have to reopen the machine to retrieve it.

"They can just drive by and get it," he said.

The discovery in Maiden come after ATM machines in Newton and Hickory were targets of older devices.

No arrests have been made in any cases, but police believe the crooks are targeting small towns where they might find older model ATM machines and gas pumps.

It's easier to install the card skimming devices on those, said Stikeleather.

They advise people to pay cash when they can at the pumps or go inside and use their card. If you use the card outside, go to pumps that are closest and in full view of the store.

ATMs closest to banks are also better or go inside and make withdrawals if necessary.

Above all, say experts, keep a close watch on accounts and look for any unusual activity. Report anything that appears suspicious to the bank and law enforcement immediately.

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