Joplin Police Say Credit and Debit Card Thieves Have Raised Thei - KOAM TV 7

Joplin Police Say Credit and Debit Card Thieves Have Raised Their Game

Joplin, MO -

Joplin police say it appears criminals stealing credit and debit card information have become more brazen.  Another "skimmer" has been found, but police say this one was discovered in a peculiar way.

The JPD says skimmers can be found anywhere.

"This is happening all over the country," says Captain Trevor Duncan with the Joplin Police Department.

Three or four skimmers have been found in Joplin within past recent years, and all have been at ATM's.  Police still recommend people pull on the ATM's credit and debit card reader to see if a skimmer surrounding that card reader comes off. But now there's a new warning.

"I guess in the beginning I thought this was more of a big city crime," says Jeanine Poe, owner of Doc's gas station.

Poe didn't notice anything wrong with one of her station's pumps Wednesday until it was opened for routine maintenance.

"We actually had someone coming down to look at the wiring in the pumps for an upgrade," says Poe.

The technician noticed internal wiring in the pump was going through a skimmer.

"Some of these devices capture information and then the device has to be retrieved to get that information off of it," says Duncan.  "Some of these devices can transmit that information immediately."

Police are still investigating the found skimmer, but say it could be one that transmits data wirelessly.  

"We were contacted by at least one local bank that had some charges on their customers' cards that they felt were in line with this particular skimmer.  They felt these customers had become victims from this skimmer," says Duncan.

In addition to pulling on any machine's card swipe, police and Poe recommend people look at a gas pump's security tape.

"There are security seals, numbered security seals, on all of the pumps.  If you look for that and make sure it has not been removed or broken, it should mean that no one has entered that cabinet," says Poe.

Poe's employees say they'll check the pumps more often, too.  But even police say it's becoming more difficult to combat this type of crime.

Poe says this internal skimmer could have been inside the gas pump for a week, based on when the pump was last serviced.  

Police say this incident serves as a reminder for people to regularly check their credit and debit card statements to make sure there are no unusual charges.


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