Police warn of identity theft after card skimmer found on gas pump in Centre County

Local News

The next time you stop for gas, there are some things you should look for before swiping your card.

“Businesses now have an evidence seal tape that’s on the outside of the gas pump. If that’s torn off, I would stay away and I would report that to the management,” State College Police Det. John Aston.
Look out for any malfunctions with the pump or keypad, along with checking your monthly bank statements.


The warning comes after State College police found a Bluetooth card skimmer on a gas pump at Snappy’s along University Drive. The Bluetooth skimmer allows the scammer to access your information by using a smart device.

“Once they’re installed, they never have to return to that gas pump. And they can get hundreds of victim’s credit card information over a course of a week or even longer,” Aston said.

This was the first time a device was found in State College, but others have been found at Ferguson Township and Centre Hall gas stations. Police said giving up the convenience of swiping your card is the best way to protect yourself.

“You’re guaranteed 100 percent not to be a victim of identity theft or a fraud if you were to pay cash,” Aston said.

Police said they believe the device was installed at Snappy’s between Feb. 28 and March 7.
Anyone that used the pumps during those dates should notify their card company of a possible breach. 

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