TikToker warns of dangerous ‘skimming’ taking place at gas station pumps

Published on Aug 01, 2023 at 6:41 PM (UTC+4)
by Adam Gray

Last updated on Aug 02, 2023 at 12:25 PM (UTC+4)
Edited by Kate Bain

TikToker warns of dangerous ‘skimming’ taking place at gas station pumps

It appears gas prices aren’t the only number rising at the pump.

Card skimming is more prevalent than ever, adding risk to a trip to the gas station.

A video recently posted to TikTok shows just how bad it’s getting – and what to watch out for.

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The clip was posted by Milan Dhanju and apparently, he captured the footage at a gas station in Oakland, California.

In the video, the TikToker can be seen using a screwdriver to prise off the keypad from the gas pump.

At first glance, it does make you question why he’s doing it.

But if you look ever so closely, the number ‘1’ button does look suspect.

And as soon as he removes the entire keypad, you can clearly see the ‘dummy’ keypad has been placed on top of the machine’s keypad.

Unfortunately, the TikToker doesn’t explain how the skimmer works.

@milandhanju0

Another one! Be careful at gas stations! #skimmers

♬ original sound – Milan Dhanju

But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out that gas stations are becoming popular targets for card skimmers.

The reason; because there often aren’t nearby employees watching what someone does at the pump.

And since many gas station customer’s aren’t in the habit of checking for skimmers before inserting their card for payment, they may go undetected for days or weeks. 

In addition to devices that steal information from the card’s magnetic stripe, the criminals may also install small cameras.

They may even use thin overlays on the keypad to capture what you type, which is what they’ve done in the TikTok video.

If the card skimmer is not found or disposed of, the criminals can return later to download all the stolen car indormation nabbed from scores of gas station customers.

They then create copies of cards and use them to make fraudulent purchases or withdrawals, or sell the stolen card details to other criminals.

Think we’ll stick to paying for our gas with cash…

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Adam Gray

Adam Gray is an experienced motoring journalist and content creator based in the United Kingdom. Using his media accreditation with manufacturers’ press offices, Adam test drives the latest cars and attends new vehicle press launches, producing written reviews and news pieces for supercarblondie.com. Before joining the Supercar Blondie team, Adam was Motoring Editor for Portfolio North magazine, North East Motoring Editor at Reach plc, and provided motoring content on a freelance basis to several lifestyle and business publications in the North of England. When he’s not behind the wheel of the latest car, Adam can be found at his local rink playing ice hockey or supporting his beloved Middlesbrough FC.