Card Skimmers Alert

I saw this topic on bank cards being skimmed covered almost 5 years ago and wanted to revisit it since this happened to me yesterday.

I have one debit card that I use almost exclusively for mystery shopping. I received an alert from the card company asking if I was trying to make a purchase at a Wal Mart hundreds of miles away. It wasn't me and the CSR told me that my card most likely was skimmed.

This was surprising since I try to be careful and I make a habit of pulling on the card readers. Although my awareness did not prevent my card from being skimmed, just wanted people to be cognizant.

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I am sorry this happened. Indeed, you really have to be careful everywhere, but especially at the fuel pumps. I always use a credit card at the fuel pump, or if there is an occasion where I must hand an employee a card. You are generally going to be covered by the credit card company if fraudulent purchases are made on a credit card. A debit card is a direct line to non-liquidated cash, and it is much harder (though not impossible) to get that back.
I have the financial institution apps I use set up to send a notification to my phone every time a card is swiped, or a purchase is made online. I highly recommend doing this. Many of the apps also allow you to turn your debit or credit card off and on, so if you do find something amiss, you can immediately turn the card off without having to waste valuable time calling the credit card company to have the card deactivated. It also saves you if you have simply misplaced your card. You can deactivate it until you find the card and not cancel out of panic. (I might have done that a time...or two. smiling smiley)

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/21/2023 03:38AM by ServiceAward.
It's been a long time, but I went through that once. I couldn't pinpoint exactly where it happened, but I think it was lifted at a gas station. My mother had it happen at a restaurant.

I stopped using my debit card because of that. I think it's easier to get charges reversed on a credit card than it is to get funds put back into my checking account.

If your path dictates you walk through hell, do it as though you own the place. -unknown
Funny thing, too....the person who stole my mother's number tried to make a purchase at Nike's website (I'm assuming a rather substantial one.) Even though it was cleared up, to this day, my mother cannot buy anything from Nike and use her address as the billing or shipping address; if she does, they immediately cancel the order. It's an issue every holiday when she wants to order shoes for my brother for Christmas.

If your path dictates you walk through hell, do it as though you own the place. -unknown
While I have never inserted one of my cards into a skimmer, I have come across skimmers over the years.

A thief managed to steal my credit card information after I dined at a restaurant. They made a big purchase at a nearby mall.

My card was not out of my sight long enough for someone to take it physically to the mall. To this day, I don't know whether it was one of the restaurant staff who did it or how but I've kept an RFID-blocking card in my wallet since the theft, just in case.
My credit card info was stollen while on a Chipotle shop many years ago. Only reason I know it was Chipotle is because it was only purchase my roommate and I had in common and his credit card I info was also stolen. We both caught the thief immediatlely when the thief used our card months later to try and buy WalMart GiftCards. We both called and reported the Freud.

Lady Marius
Canadian Mystery Shopper
I had my debit card number stolen once and the only place it had been used was at the bank's ATM machine...there probably was a skimmer on it that I never noticed. It took a while but the bank made good on it after giving me temporary credit.

The more I learn about people...the more I like my dog..

Mark Twain

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/21/2023 07:03PM by MsJudi.
This was a problem on Customer First shops with me back when the old company had them. You were not allowed to use gift cards for pay at the pump as you can now.
That happened to me and when I went to the bank to get a new card they said that ATM's are the worst because there is no one watching them. Sadly it was literally at the bank not at some off site random place.
I do a TON of gas station shops. Other than Phillips 66 (which does not take AmEx) I use the Bluebird reloadable card from Walmart. I load $20-$30 at a time and use it. That way if it gets stolen it is not a lot of money. Also, you can use it over and over and it will not block you. It is not a gift card but a debit card and you can use the app while traveling to reload and check your balance at any time. The only problem is once in awhile a station will hold an amount over the price, but it usually goes off pretty fast (within a few minutes).

I intend to live forever. So far, so good.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/26/2023 06:46PM by stilllearning.

I intend to live forever. So far, so good.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/26/2023 06:46PM by stilllearning.
@drdoggie00 wrote:

I think it's easier to get charges reversed on a credit card than it is to get funds put back into my checking account.

You have specific legal rights with credit cards, but in most states, debit card policies are set by the bank. For that reason, I don't use debit cards at all.

If you do, I strongly recommend that you avoid white label ATMs.
Do you ever make purchases on My card was not skimmed but my account was hacked and that is how they attempted a fraudulent purchase. I only use credit cards with online companies and try to use PayPal as a go between since it is the most secure online payment method around.

Briana Baca
Data Collection Manager

“Reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it.” —Jane Wagner
MSF, Walmart tried to steal $200 of my money through their app when I did an online pick up order shop. I don't even set foot inside a Walmart now. I won't do business with them again, not even with cash. My bank issued me a new card and blocked that transaction.

MW, I don't know what a white label ATM is.. I only use the bank ATM to do cash transactions. And the only time we've ever had a card skimmed was at local off brand gas stations, and I think one BP down south one time. I'm pretty careful of skimmers, but my son isn't always as observant.
A white label ATM is an ATM that is owned and operated by private non-banking entities. You will typically see them in non chain restaurants, bars, gas stations or convenience stores. The reason I don't like them is that these companies tend to have less controls in place than banks. You do not know who is servicing the machines or what type of controls or background checks they have on their employees, making them a perfect target for credit card thieves who want to place skimming device in the machines.
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