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Technology/Services

Same C-Store Struck by 4 Skimming Attacks in the Same Month

More than $1,000 stolen from one customer

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Local police in Charlotte, N.C. are investigating how one Exxon/7-Eleven station became the victim of four skimming incidents within the same month, reported WSOC TV.

Citing Charlotte-Mecklenburg police reports, the news outlet said that a worker servicing a pump found a skimming device on May 8. Four days later, someone found two more skimming devices on two different gas pumps. Then, on May 19, someone found another skimming device. The month of January saw two card skimmers found at the same station, according to reports. A reporter asked the store manager how often employees check the tamper-evident red tape at each pump, and he said they check it every day when replacing trash bags.

The incidents are under investigation, the report said.

Skimming occurs when criminals open and insert skimming devices in unattended PIN-entry devices. The criminals can then download personal information from credit and debit cards, leading to identity theft. To combat this problem, tamper-evident labels for fuel pumps have been developed as a simple and cost-effective way to lower fraud.

Anti-skimming stickers such as the NACS WeCare Tamper-Evident Decals are one way to reduce the risk of skimming at fuel dispensers. Operators place the tamper-evident labels on dispenser door entries, which help identify potential security breaches if skimming devices are inserted at fuel dispensers. If someone lifts the label to open a dispenser door and insert a skimming device, a “void” message appears on the label, providing a visual alert to store employees so that additional action can be taken. Because the labels clearly indicate that they prevent tampering, the labels also assure customers that their data is secure, and discourage criminals targeting the store.

Convenience and fuel retail locations in the United States use more than three million NACS WeCare Tamper-Evident Decals. Retailers can use the SkimDefend app, powered by Pinnacle Corp. in coordination with the decals.

Arlington, Texas-based Pinnacle’s app—when installed on a mobile device—will scan and log the unique characteristic of each WeCare decal and locally store the site, time, pump number and decal ID information. Retailers can use this information, stored digitally, to track any card reader in dispenser (CRIND) intrusions and combat skimming efforts, maintain forensic evidence for authorities in the event a skimmer is eventually discovered, as well as help comply with PCI 3.1 guidelines.

Since 2008, NACS and Conexxus, both located in Alexandria, Va., have offered convenience and fuel retailers resources and tools to initiate and maintain effective payment security procedures that help reduce skimming.

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