“Rattling” Is Not the Solution to Beating Skimmers

As can easily be seen in the news, credit card skimming at gas stations continues to be an issue the retail fueling industry faces. Since thieves seek high-traffic operations to accumulate the most data, gas stations tend to be a prime target. Despite volumes of well-intentioned fraud prevention tips on the internet, many are not effective — particularly those intended to identify or avoid a “skimming” device.

One classic internet tip states that customers should “rattle” a dispenser’s bezel (the device into which a credit card is inserted) to see if anything looks or feels suspicious. This was a good tip. Yet, thieves always seem to be one step ahead of retailers and consumers when it comes to finding new, improved technologies to overcome fraud barriers. For example, police in Woodbridge, Virginia found inside a pump an "internal skimmer device", which makes it very difficult to spot, since it hooks up ot the pump on the inside.

Instead of jiggling and trying to spot a skimming device at the pump, the first step for retailers to take in increasing security should be to acquire and enable EMV-compatible equipment like Englefield Oil Co. deployed at its sites. It may sound too simplistic to tell retailers to invest in one piece of technology to solve a significant problem. Yet, EMV has proven to be effective, which is why it is always brought back into the conversation.

As skimmers continue to try to test and outsmart retailers with new gadgets or strategies, EMV serves as a substantial barrier to prevent thieves from successfully cloning credit cards. The EMV technology encrypts the credit card data into a code that makes it impossible for thieves to steal.

If you want to be proactive, with EMV-based security, contact Gilbarco Veeder-Root. Keep in mind that 80 percent of consumers have chip-based credit cards. As EMV transactions have been enabled at general retail over the past two years, these consumers have become very aware of EMV and its security advantages. Many of these consumers will tend to patronize merchants who use EMV payment technology over those who don’t. Start your EMV implementation today!

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