Montgomery County

Skimming devices found on Montgomery County gas pumps

Amsterdam, Fonda stations targeted
Montgomery County released photos of the Fonda Mobil that showed wires and circuit boards that had been hidden.
PHOTOGRAPHER:
Montgomery County released photos of the Fonda Mobil that showed wires and circuit boards that had been hidden.

FONDA — Credit card skimming machines have been found at three Montgomery County gas stations in recent weeks and officials are warning residents to be watchful.

Montgomery County Executive Matthew L. Ossenfort announced the finds in a news release Wednesday.

County weights and measures officials have been on the lookout for the devices for more than a year, officials said. They got a notification Sept. 7 from a credit card fraud department about an Amsterdam station.

Further checks discovered devices at two other gas stations in the county. In all, officials found and removed them at two Amsterdam stations and the Fonda Mobil. A county spokesman said Wednesday that he didn’t have information on which two Amsterdam stations were targeted.

“The Department of Weights and Measures from both Montgomery and Fulton counties are working together to combat this issue and we are working diligently to increase routine checks for this type of nefarious activity,” the release said.

The devices are electronic credit card readers that thieves use to capture credit card information from customers. They can impact both gas pumps and ATMs.

The initial company report uncovered three such devices at the Amsterdam station. Amsterdam police processed and removed the devices, and then sent them on to the state laboratory for DNA testing.

Montgomery County Director of Weights and Measures Raymond J. Borst discovered another of the three stations last week after an FBI alert concerning a Northeast skimming ring.

Borst found all six pumps at the Fonda station compromised. The FBI responded and took all six for evidence.

The county released photos of the Fonda Mobil that showed wires and circuit boards that had been hidden inside the pumps. 

The devices are difficult to detect as they are inside the pump, officials said. A theory is that the thieves gained access to the pumps in the overnight hours and installed the devices. Officials did not reference any tamper seals.

Officials recommend customers look for anything that appears off and if anything appears tampered with, alert an employee or police.

County officials also recommended residents regularly check their accounts, or pay for gas inside stations with either their cards or cash to avoid the outside card reader.

Categories: News, Schenectady County

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