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Sarasota Friday, Dec. 7, 2018 11 months ago

Sarasota deputies warn against gas pump skimmers

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Two discovered at Tamiami Trail station near Gulf Gate.

Sheriff’s deputies and detectives, working with the Florida Department of Agriculture, discovered a pair of credit-card skimmers on Thursday in a sweep of about 80 gas stations in Sarasota County.

The devices were found at a Texaco station at 6895 South Tamiami Trail, not far from the highway’s intersection with Gulf Gate Drive. The skimmers, which can pilfer personal credit data and be used to create duplicate counterfeit cards, were removed and held as evidence.

A statement from the Sheriff’s Office urges customers of this station to be especially vigilant in examining bank and credit-card statements and seek answers to discrepancies, no matter how small.

Deputies advise it’s always safer to use cash to pay inside. If that’s not possible, credit cards afford more fraud protection than most debit cards.

Other tips:

• Check for signs of tampering at the pump. This includes a broken security seal over the door. If something seems out of place, notify gas station personnel.

• Monitor bank statements regularly to spot unauthorized charges. If something doesn’t add up, contact your bank immediately.

Anyone with information regarding these skimming devices should contact the Criminal Investigations Section at 861.4900 or submit an anonymous tip through Crime Stoppers of Sarasota County by calling 366-TIPS.

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