Pasco Sheriff’s deputies are warning residents about skimmers found on gas pumps which criminals use to steal credit card information from customers.
Deputies say two devices were found Thursday in Wesley Chapel. One device was located at the BP Station at 2330 Willow Oak Drive, a second was found at the Marathon Station at 26556 Wesley Chapel Blvd.
They say the devices were installed internally and not Bluetooth equipped, so it’s believed the suspects were not able to access customers’ credit card numbers.
Gas station owner Hatem Faraj has been paying close attention to his pumps.
This week his efforts paid off, when he uncovered not one but two of the skimming devices attached inside the gas pumps at his Wesley Chapel business.
Faraj said, “I really care about my customers and I use my card out there too, and everyone who comes to you they really trusting you with their card.”
After making the discovery, Faraj went back and looked at video from his surveillance cameras and was amazed the culprits were captured in the act.
“I know and the lights were on too, any police could pass by and see somebody open those, they could have been caught, they were gutsy” said Faraj.
It’s not known if any cards were compromised before the discovery.
But the owner has since placed new locks on the pumps.
Jackie May buys her gas at the station on Wesley Chapel boulevard.
“I think it is something more gas stations need to be vigilant about,” said May.
May’s daughter has fallen victim to scammers using skimmers.
She’s glad to know the owner of this gas station is checking his pumps.
May added, “It probably has more to do with this is owned by an individual and he understands that his business will suffer if his customers are not happy, so that makes a difference.”
But the skimmer discovery has Tonya Williams thinking twice about pulling out her card out at the pump.
Williams said, “It’s a little scary because I do use my debit card when I pump gas, I don’t know if it would be simpler just paying cash.”
For now, the search is on for the culprits who placed the skimmers on the pumps in the first place.
Anyone with information on this case is asked to call the Pasco Sheriff’s Office at 727-847-5878.
Last month, a state-wide investigation found over 100 skimmers used for identity theft at gas stations in Florida including dozens in Tampa Bay. See where the skimmers were found here.
Copyright 2015 WFLA. All rights reserved.