How to avoid getting skimmed when you’re filling your car with gas

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In our ongoing efforts to educate and inform, our partners at Patriot Capital have asked us to share the following article written by Fredrick Kunkle that appeared in the Washington Post on June 16, 2017. Read the original article here.

 

When you’re filling your car at the gas pump this summer, you could be also be giving a thief access to your bank account or credit card.

Gas stations are a chief target of criminals who use data-grabbing skimmers to siphon data from drivers’ credit and ATM cards, according to law enforcement officials and gas retailers. Almost daily, the secretive and illegal devices are discovered at gas stations across the country, such as here, here and here. Earlier this month, Fairfax County police reported finding 21 skimmers at 15 different locations in the past year.

Skimmers work like legitimate banking card readers, but they are secretly installed in or on the pumps by criminals to steal people’s financial data. Gas stations are particularly vulnerable, but banks and other businesses have also been hit.

“The people who are doing skimming — it’s amazing, some of the things they do,” said Lyle Beckwith, senior vice president for government relations at the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS).

Gas stations are targeted because of their physical layout and the volume of their business. Thieves find it relatively easy to use gas station islands as cover while they tamper with the machines, Beckwith said. The devices are placed either inside the pumps by thieves who jimmy them open or outside the pumps using overlays on the pump’s card reader. Usually, thieves put one skimmer in a single gas station, but that one device can capture a lot of card data.

NACS, which represents more than 2,100 retailers, says nearly 80 percent of the fuel in the United States is retailed through them. Although only a small fraction of those fill-ups get skimmed, a small fraction of 29 million daily fuel customers can mean a lot. A single skimmer can collect data from 30 to 100 cards a day, NACS says.

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The National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) says special sealing tape can help consumers and gas station operators spot pumps that have been tampered with. (Screen grab from NACS video; courtesy of NACS)

NACS

The National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) says special sealing tape can help consumers and gas station operators spot pumps that have been tampered with. (Screen grab from NACS video; courtesy of NACS)

To counter them, retailers have been sealing the pumps with special tape. If you see that the seal is broken, you should not use the machine and should alert the operator, he said.

Retailers think the problem will diminish once consumers and retailers fully adopt chip technology, according to Rob Underwood, president of the Petroleum Marketers Association of America.

“As of now, there is a wait time for retailers to have access to the new equipment, which costs around $20,000 per pump,” Underwood said in an email. He said consumers and retailers will still remain vulnerable to fraud until credit card companies allow retailers to require consumers to use PINs on transactions.

NACS has produced a video for its retailers that’s also helpful for consumers, which you can view here:

Here are some tips from law enforcement officials and retailers to protect you at the pump:

  • Use cards with PIN numbers

You’re better off using a card with a PIN if you buy gas, according to NACS and PMAA. NACS, citing a 2013 Federal Reserve study, says you’re four times more likely to be ripped off if your transaction is made without a PIN.

“Signature-based transactions are processed on the antiquated Visa and MasterCard systems that do not process in real-time, versus the instant operation of PIN debit. Not using PIN also increases the cost of the transactions, which is passed back to the consumer,” NACS says. It also says that even old dispensers have technology to encrypt PIN numbers, and that gas pumps have been equipped with them since the early 1990s. “PINs provide a higher level of security. That is why banks require them for transactions at ATMs,” it says.

However, it should be noted that Fairfax County police say that if you’re ripped off via a credit card, you have more protection as a consumer than if the thieves do somehow get your PIN and access to your bank account.

“When the money comes out of that bank account, it’s a lot more difficult to get reimbursed,” Fairfax County Police Officer Tawny Wright said.

That said, the retailers — who bear the cost for fraud — still say they think customers are better off using the PIN.

  • Avoid older gas pumps if you can

These pumps are easier to break into and tamper with. Newer pumps have technology to prevent being ripped off.

  • Check to see whether the pump has been tampered with

Thieves install internal devices by opening the pumps and putting them inside. But gas stations have fought back by using serial-numbered security tape that track the reasons why the dispenser door was opened. If the tape is cut, damaged or broken, it should “bleed” to alert people that it’s been tampered with, NACS says.

For external skimmers, which are installed over an existing keypad, look to see if the keypad is raised. You can do this by running your fingernail along the edge, NACS says. The skimmer may also be loose or wiggle when  you touch it.

Police said newer Bluetooth skimmers are particularly tricky to detect because they can be hidden entirely inside the pumps.

  • There’s an app for that

Retailers can use the SkimDefend app, along with special NACS tamper-alert decals, to track attempts to mess with the pumps.

  • What should you do if you suspect a pump has been tampered with? 

Customers should alert the gas station operator, who should shut the pump down immediately and have it inspected by a technician.

NACS also advises that no one, including the technician, should touch or remove the device. Let the police handle it. In large cases, the FBI and Secret Service sometimes get involved, NACS says.

  • Check your banking and credit card statements frequently for suspicious charges 

If you see anything out of order, call your bank or credit company to report it right away.

If you are a petroleum retailer unsure as to whether now is the time to upgrade your equipment with EMV technology, have questions about equipment and/or financing, we invite you to contact us at 1.800.451.4021 and along with our partners at Patriot Capital, we can explore your equipment and financing options to ensure your location(s) have the latest and greatest data security and your customers’ bank accounts and credit cards are safe from such data skimming technology and practices.

We appreciate your continued business and support!

Gilbarco Announces First US Fuel Dispenser EMV “Chip” Transaction

Gilbarco First US EMV Dispenser
The following article has been reproduced from the original content found at http://www.gilbarco.com/us/news/gilbarco-announces-first-us-fuel-dispenser-emv-chip-transaction

Heightens Security and Meets Growing Consumer Expectations

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Gilbarco Veeder-Root has announced the successful processing of the first US EMV™ “chip” transaction at a fuel dispenser, utilizing Gilbarco’s Passport® Point-of-Sale (POS) and Encore® fuel dispensers on the First Data network (NYSE:FDC).

Gilbarco’s Passport POS solution is the first POS in the US to process forecourt EMV transactions, leveraging FlexPay™ CRINDS from Gilbarco.  Gilbarco expects forecourt EMV payments to quickly begin turning on across the country at the large installed base of FlexPay CRINDS as the software is released for payment networks throughout the year, and as fraud migrates to less secure payment points and security-conscious customers migrate to those sites with enhanced security.  The Passport POS system has supported EMV in-store transactions since May 2016.  With simple software upgrades, Passport sites can be easily configured and enabled for full EMV transactions at the dispenser for all major card types.

“Gilbarco is proud to continue to lead the market on EMV technologies, both inside the store and at the dispenser.  Our customers are looking to enable EMV at the dispenser as soon as possible, to provide the security their customers expect of them, and to get the most of the forecourt EMV hardware investments they’ve already made,” said Mark Williams, Vice President of Marketing, Gilbarco Veeder-Root.

Kamlesh Patel, owner of the 49 Fuels site processing the first US forecourt EMV transaction was eager to enable EMV at the forecourt, stating, “Our dispensers were already EMV-ready, so turning on EMV at the dispenser just required a simple Passport software upgrade.  We’ve seen our customers rapidly become accustomed to paying with their chip cards inside the store on our Passport system, and they are quickly expecting to be able to use their chip card at the dispenser, as they know that it gives them additional security.”

For more information about the Fundamentals of EMV, please go to http://www.gilbarco.com/us/learning-center/emv-c-store-retailers.

About Gilbarco Veeder-Root
Gilbarco Veeder-Root is the worldwide technology leader for retail and commercial fueling operations. It offers the broadest range of integrated solutions from the forecourt to the convenience store and head office. For over 150 years, Gilbarco has earned the trust of its customers by providing long-term partnership, uncompromising support and proven reliability. Major product lines include: fuel dispensers, dispenser media, point-of-sale systems, payment systems, tank gauges, software development and integration, fleet management systems and nozzles.patriot-logo

For more information about Gilbarco EMV or any other Gilbarco Veeder-Root products,  feel free to contact us at 1.800.451.4021.  And that’s not all!  Not only can we help with your equipment needs but our great partners at Patriot Capital are THE Equipment Financing Specialist of our industry.

We appreciate your continued business and support!

Take Advantage of JWK WEB Specials Today!!!!

Piusi WEB Specials

 

From now until the end of April, our WEB Specials will feature various Gasoila sealant and chemical Gasoila_AP02products, as well as a pair of new 12v pump packages from Piusi.  If you place an order for one of the Piusi pump packages, the F00372510 or the F00378510, at any time prior to 1:00 PM (Eastern Time), it will ship direct to your location from the manufacturer on the same day, regardless of the quantity in our own stock.  Orders received after 1:00 PM will ship the next business day.

Be sure to call us if you have any questions at 1-800-238-1225.

 

 

 

 

The John W. Kennedy Company appreciates your business and continued support!

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Drive Home 2016 With Two Great Encore Financing Options

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Get ready for EMV and enhance your experience!  Patriot Capital has two great financing alternatives from Gilbarco they’d like you to know about before the next price increase:

Gilbarco Bundle $2000 Financing Rebate.
Gilbarco has launched their Fall bundle promotion, providing bundle savings of up to $13,500 per site.  Customers who utilize the Passport / Encore 700 4 crate bundle and who finance with Patriot will receive a $2,000 rebate check after final funding.

Don’t Make a Payment Until 2017
Order the Encore 700 S to be eligible for no payments until January 2017 on the dispensers and related installation costs.  If you are financing with Patriot, order now to, other than a one month security deposit, make no additional payments until 2017.

Taking advantage of these promotions provides you with many benefits, including:

  • an enhanced customer experience at the pump and the opportunity to grow your station’s sales with Applause TV
  • being EMV ready on the forecourt
  • purchasing ahead of future price increases
  • capturing Section 179 tax benefits to create cash flow advantages* (tax disclaimer at bottom)

* Please consult your tax advisor for advice regarding your particular situation.  Patriot Capital does not provide tax advice.

You can view the official bulletin from Patriot Capital here.

The John W. Kennedy Company appreciates your business and continued support!

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Universal Announces New 4″ and 5″ Offsets

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universal-303-shortyUniversal Valve Co. has announced that the Model 303 “Shorty” line of offset adapters will now include 4″ and 5″ variants.  The offset adapters are designed to prevent any strain on piping and dispenser boxes, as well as allowing for fast and easy dispenser upgrades.

If you’re out at PEI in Atlanta on October 19-21, be sure to check out Universal at Booth 4623.

 

 

 

 

The John W. Kennedy Company appreciates your business and continued support!

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Gasboy Discontinuing Production of Atlas Retail Models and Encoding Equipment

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Effective December 1, Gasboy will be ending production on the Atlas Retail Mechanical (8700K Series) and Electronic (8800K Series) line of pumps and dispensers, as well as card and key encoding equipment and accessories.  This is part of an ongoing modernization effort to provide up-to-date access control devices for the PLUS Fleet Management System.  Because of those efforts, the need for older key and card encoding equipment has been eliminated.  Gasboy will continue to accept orders for these products up until the effective date, and will also provide spares support for end of life products.

The company will continue to produce the Atlas Commercial Electronic (9800K Series) and Mechanical (9100K Series) line of pumps and dispensers.  For more information, you can read the official announcement here.

The John W. Kennedy Company appreciates your business and continued support!

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