Arizona AG: Skimming devices could create fraudulent credit card debt

While the prevalence of skimming devices has increased nationwide, authorities in Arizona have picked it out as a particular problem for their state. Now one of its highest-ranking officials has warned consumers that criminals could use them to pile up thousands in fraudulent credit card debt.

Attorney General Terry Goddard warned consumers that credit card skimming – using a small device inserted into an ATM or gas pump to scan and store credit card information for illegal purposes – is on the rise in the state, and is a very serious crime.

“Skimming is simply theft by another name,” Goddard said. “I urge consumers who are victims of skimming to report it immediately to law enforcement and their bank, but also to the attorney general’s office.”

Goddard said there consumers can combat this kind of theft by paying at the register at a gas station rather than inserting a card into the slot on the pump.

Often, thieves use a camera or other high-tech equipment in conjunction with a skimming device at an ATM to record consumers’ PIN.