Police Detect 'Large Scale' Credit Fraud Through Gas Pump Skimmers
Police say skimming devices were found inside two local gas pumps, at both Lipton Marts at 580 North St. and 460 South St. Police said it is not known how long the devices had been in place nor how much credit card information was stolen.
Police say the number of locations with such devices could increase as authorities worked to inspect gas pumps throughout the city.
The devices take credit card information when the cards are scanned and pass it along to third parties. The devices have been removed from both locations, eliminating the risk of further theft. However, residents who have used those pumps are asked to check their records and "be vigilant for signs of fraud."
Should residents find signs of fraud, they are asked to contact their bank first and then the Pittsfield Police Department at 413-448-9705.
Police say similar devices were found on gas pumps in Great Barrington and if anyone sees fraudulent activity from either of those to contact Police in that town.
PC Magazine did an article last year on how to identify a skimmer at an ATM or gas pump.
Area businesses which operate the "Gilbarco Advantage" or the "Gilbarco Encore" pumps are asked to check their equipment as well because it appears those particular pumps were targeted.
Lipton Energy is reportedly cooperating with the investigation but cannot assist customers with questions about the investigation. Gas pumps throughout the city will be inspected by the end of Wednesday.
Massachusetts State Police, the Massachusetts Division of Standards, and local authorities are working the investigation.
Correction: an earlier version stated that skimmers were found in Lee but Lee Police say that is incorrect.