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STOURBRIDGE, Mass. (WWLP) – Police are reminding drivers to check their gas pumps for skimmers after several were found at a truck stop in Stourbridge, Massachusetts.

According to the police department, officers were called to the trial travel center on Friday for a report of skid devices found on diesel pumps. Three skimming devices were found on three different pumps at the truck stop.

The discovery comes after three other skimmers were found at the same location earlier in the week.

Thieves can install skimming devices anywhere you might use the magnetic strip of a credit or debit card. A skimmer collects credit card information when the card is swiped. The printer will then clone the credit card so it can be used to make fraudulent charges and steal from the victim’s account.

In the past, you could just use your finger to feel the skimmer where you swipe your card, but now thieves are getting more advanced and hiding skimmers inside gas pumps.

To avoid becoming a victim, police recommend that you check the card reader is not tampered with and check the keypad before inserting the card. Also note that if the numbers are hard to press, the car may be tampered with.

Police say if you see a device like the one pictured on the gas pump, don’t use it and contact store management.

The Department of Consumer Affairs offers tips on how to protect your banking information when you pump gas.

• Use the pumps closest to the attendant and be aware of lighting conditions. The pump most dimly lit and farthest from the attendant is an ideal target for a thief.

• Pay inside and use cash whenever possible. Credit and debit cards account for more than half of gasoline purchases in the U.S., making it extremely easy for thieves to steal your information.

• Check condition of pumps and pay attention to details. Sometimes there are minor deviations that you can detect. If it looks suspicious or if you notice any signs of tampering, notify the attendant immediately and make sure the police are called.

• Look around you. Some thieves use Blue Tooth technology, which requires them to be a certain distance from the pump. If the person or vehicle seems to be staying too long, notify the attendant.

• Monitor your bank account and check your credit card statements daily. Notify your bank or card issuer if anything seems unusual or if you notice fraudulent charges.



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