Skimmers steal CMPD gas card info; police warning public

CMPD the victim of gas card skimmers
Published: Jun. 17, 2015 at 12:23 AM EDT|Updated: Jul. 17, 2015 at 1:44 AM EDT
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CMPD showed this example of a gas card skimmer.
CMPD showed this example of a gas card skimmer.

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Charlotte Mecklenburg Police are reminding people to be vigilant when paying for gas at the pump after officers with the department fell victim to card skimmers at local pumps.

Police say four of the department's Fuelman credit cards were skimmed at a local gas station in April. Officers have not said where it happened, but said they canceled about 16 more cards used at the location around the same time to make sure they were not compromised.

Police said "when officers paid for their fuel at the station, an internal reader that was installed by someone read and recorded the credit card's information. That information was then sold to users that used the CMPD Fuelman account information to purchase fuel across the US."

The out-of-state purchases alerted CMPD that something was wrong, and the department canceled those cards.

Police did not say how much gas was purchased, or how long thieves got away with using CMPD's account.

Officers are warning residents to be cautious.

Investigators say use cash as much as possible when buying gas. If you have to use a card, credit is better than debit because you don't have to reveal your PIN number. And, officers say, always check your credit and debit card bills for gas pump purchases.

Police say another recommendation is "ending the dollar amount of fuel purchased at the pump to something other than the rounded dollar or 50 cents. For example, always have the last digit in the "cents"end in a 1. Your credit card statement for gas purchases would show $20.91, $19.71, $22.81, $30.01. This way you'll see the "1" cent and know that you purchased it."

Keep a close eye on the gas pump.

Officers say "look for the safety seal stickers near the card readers that are applied to the pumps to ensure they are sealed and have not been tampered with."

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