Credit Card Information Theft at the Gas Pump: How to Avoid Becoming a Victim

There is undoubtedly a connection between credit card information theft and the burglary of personal identity. When a person uses his credit card at the gas pump, there’s a good possibility that he’ll find fraudulent charges on his credit report soon. The following will offer some insight into how ID thieves get the personal data they use to destroy the lives of their victims, as well as some suggestions that may help stop this crime from harming any more individuals.


Pittsfield, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/10/2013 -- A man pulls up to a self-serve gas pump and puts his credit card into the appropriate space to pay for his gas. Little does he know, there’s a “skimmer” attached to the pump, and it just copied his charge card information. This data is picked up by an identity thief and all hell breaks loose on this poor man’s credit standing. Credit card ID theft happens as easily as that, and police across the country are warning consumers not to use their debit/credit cards to make gas purchases or to withdraw money from ATMs. There is no way to know if a “skimmer” is in place on every ATM machine or gas pump in the country; an individual only finds out several months to a year later that his identity has been stolen in this manner. Law enforcement agents strongly suggest using cash to make gas purchases an to go inside a bank to withdraw cash, rather than use an ATM. Of course, the situation often arises that someone needs cash late at night, so using an ATM is the only option. Just hope there’s no “skimmer” attached to the machine one uses to get cash from.

A person who is victimized by credit card information theft feels violated, helpless, and angry. They are often unaware of the theft until many months have passed, and then they may only find out about it by accident. Some ideas to help folks avoid being targeted by an ID thief include the simple act of covering one’s charge card as much as possible when using it for a purchase. If one physically leans over the counter while a credit card is being processed, one can keep the numbers on the card confidential. Additionally, requiring the cashier to see proof of identification is important. If the face and signature of the person using the card do not exactly match the face and signature on the card or driver’s license produced for proof of ID, the clerk must stop the transaction immediately.

More Tips to Prevent Credit Card Information Theft

About Legal-yogi, an online repository of all manner of law located in located in Pittsfield, has more information on this topic and is happy to share it with interested parties.