On Your Side: How to spot gas skimmers at the pump, Costco responds to Knoxville video

Local News

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – A video with thousands of views is circulating online, claiming to show a gas skimmer on a pump at a local store. The company, now responding directly to the video.

The Wednesday afternoon video was posted to Facebook with the caption: “Beware Costco had several skimmers and they almost got my info again! Fricken thieves! Lovell road Knoxville…”

The video has since amassed thousands of views, taken at Costco on Kingston Pike in Farragut. Leading some to question customer safety, including customers who said they got gas on the same day the alleged gas skimmers were found.

Costco responding to the video:

“There are no ‘skimmers’ in the gas pumps at the Costco fuel station in Farragut, nor have there ever been, despite the recent video posted to Facebook. 

Costco protects our members data with very elaborate security procedures at all of our gas stations, including Farragut, and we have re-confirmed that all of our dispensers are secure. Had we found a skimmer, we would have immediately contacted the proper authorities.

We are trying to contact the member who posted the video to address this mistaken impression.”

How to spot gas skimmers & shimmers

The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance (TDCI), through the consumer affairs division, recommends drivers check gas pumps to ensure there is not a gas skimmer or shimmer.

TDCI defines skimmers and shimmers as tools scammers use to steal credit/debit card information.

Skimmers are found on the outside of the card reader and target the magnetic strip. Shimmers are found inside the card reader and target the chip in chip cards.

If there is a skimmer in place, a wiggle of the card reader should dislodge the skimmer.

If a skimmer is found or you suspect that a skimmer is in place, notify the cashier or operating company if it’s an ATM, and report it to the local police.

Regularly check bank statements and online accounts for fraudulent charges and report those to your bank or credit card company.

Make sure the gas pump panel is closed and doesn’t show signs of tampering. Many stations now put security seals over the cabinet panel. This is part of a voluntary program by the industry to thwart gas pump tampering.

If the pump panel is opened, the label will read “void.”

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