CLEARWATER, Fla. (WFLA) – Police in Clearwater are putting out a consumer warning after finding a new kind of skimmer on a gas pump.
Clearwater police officers and detectives responded to the 7-Eleven on Belcher Road Tuesday morning. Police were notified after store employees were unable to open one of the gas pumps.
When the pump was finally opened, police found a new high-tech version of a skimmer. The device was equipped with Bluetooth. Police say it allows the suspect or suspects to sit nearby and gather card information without having to actually visit the pump.
Officers say they hadn’t seen this type of skimmer before in Clearwater. They believe it’s been on the pump at least a week.
Anyone who used Pump 9 to buy gas at the 7-Eleven located at 205 North Belcher Road should closely monitor their bank and credit card statements. Fraudulent charges could pop up anytime. Police say canceling the credit card you used at that pump would be the best idea.
Detectives say you can protect yourself at the pump by using a credit card instead of a debit card for gas purchases. They also recommend looking at the tape that seals the pump but warn that is not 100 percent a sign the pump hasn’t been tampered with. They advise paying inside the store because it is safer and say the best recommendation is paying inside with cash.
The Clearwater Police Department has opened a fraud investigation involving the new skimmer they found. Anyone with information should call (727) 562-4242.