Scammers have found a way to empty your bank account within minutes.
Our police department’s financial crimes detectives are seeing a concerning trend at local gas stations. Criminals are using high-tech skimming devices to steal your bank card information and money. In the last year, our investigators have removed 21 individual skimmers from 15 different locations in Fairfax County.
What’s also concerning is a new wave of Bluetooth skimmers are harder to detect. They’re completely inside the pump and there’s no real warning sign to look out for when you go to pay.
The financial crimes unit is working diligently, but there are some steps you can take to better protect your pocketbook:
- Use a credit card when possible and not a debit/ATM card where you need to enter a PIN. New technology allows them to get your PIN and clone your card in no time. It also may be more difficult to have personal bank funds reimbursed.
- Try to avoid older gas pumps which are easier to infiltrate and alter.
- Check your bank and card statements regularly for any suspicious charges. If you notice anything fraudulent or questionable, contact your bank or credit card company immediately.
- If you feel you’ve been a victim of financial crime in Fairfax County, you can report it online through the Financial Crimes Online Reporting (FiCOR) system