John E. Pytte Dec. 12, 2016

credit cards in pocketCredit Card Skimming is a technique that people use to steal information from a person's debit or credit card. There are handheld devices that can be used for skimming. It is relatively simple to get access to these devices. In fact, you can purchase the devices needed to skim a credit card on the internet just by initiating a search with Google..

The skimmer copies information from the black magnetic stripe on the back of your credit card, or if the crook can get possession of the technology, he can extract the information from the embedded chip. This allows the perpetrator to get many types of information from your credit card, such as your social security number, address and account number.Once they have the data, there are typically three things that skimmers do once they have your credit card.

They may open up fraudulent bank accounts and credit accounts in your name. The thieves may also clone the strip on the back of your card. They may then attempt to use a newly minted credit card with this strip and make purchases. A victim may not realize that something is wrong until he or she attempts to make a purchase. Additionally, people can use the skimming device and sell the information to another person.

The Effects Of Skimming

No one knows exactly how much money is lost each year due to credit card skimming. However, experts believe that billions of dollars are lost each year due to credit card skimming. It is no surprise that so much money is lost when these skimming devices are available everywhere.

Everyone has likely been affected by credit card fraud. Merchants that accept fraudulent credit cards may be held responsible for the transactions. Banks may also be held responsible.


Skimming violates state and federal laws.The type of punishment for the skimmer depends on the laws of the state of residence of the victim.

Places Where Skimming Is Often Done

The ATM is a place where many skimmers steal credit card information. They can install a small camera in the ATM. Movie rental kiosks are also targeted because they are places that people visit frequently.

Skimmers are also occasionally set up in retail stores. Many people attach the skimmers to the card swipe devices. This is more likely to happen in small stores. It is hard to distinguish these devices from real credit card swipe devices.

Credit card operated gas pumps are another point of sale that is often targeted by skimmers. In the past, the skimmers would place a device next to or on top of the card reader on the gas pump. Today, skimmers will put the device in the gas pump card reading unit so that no one will be able to see it. The sophistication of skimming has only increased over the years as we use credit cards for far more purchasing that we did before. The array of techniques, and the stealth levels of the equipment is astounding.

There are a few things that you can do to avoid getting your credit card information stolen. You could try to use cash as much as possible (checks have your bank account number printed on them which could be used by a miscreant to attack your checking account).. Familiarize yourself with the details of legitimate card readers by being super-observant, and when something doesn’t look or feel right, report it to the cashier. When you do use your credit card, you should keep an eye on it when the transaction is being made.Finally, diligently check your credit card statements for purchases you didn’t make. A clever thief may start stealing from you by making small, unnoticed purchases before she goes for a big one.

What To Do If You Have Been A Victim Of Credit Card Skimming

If your credit card information has been stolen, then you should contact your credit card’s issuing bank and the local police department. You may be asked to provide the police officers with your credit card statements. You will also need to get in touch with your credit card company. In most cases, the credit card company will close your account and give you a new card with a new number. Most cards have unauthorized purchase guarantees that absolve you of any false charges.

You should also check your credit reports. If there is an unauthorized charge, then you will need to dispute it. Credit card issuers are also becoming more proactive in contacting the card holder if a large or unexpected charge is made.

There are times when a lawyer should be engaged to combat this kind of fraud- Georgia Debt Relief is here to help if you suspect you have a case concerning credit card skimming.