Card Skimmers Hit the Pacific Northwest and Local Gas Stations

Card skimming is on the rise in the Pacific Northwest. Locations up and down the I-5 corridor as well as local gas stations have been targeted the most. Below is some helpful information on what a card skimmer is and what you can do to be on the lookout.

  • Card skimmers are devices that fit over the ATM’s card reader and often times look like they belong on the ATM. Along with card readers, there may be hidden cameras in place to capture your pin.
  • Look for evidence of tampering when using a gas pump. For example, some gas pumps will place a security seal over the portion of the gas pump that controls the card reader. If that seal is broken, that is a strong indication that the card reader has been tampered with. The seal will say “void” on it if it the card reader door has been opened.
  • If using an ATM; ways to detect a skimmer include lightly pulling on the card reader and pin pad to ensure neither easily detach from the machine, paying attention to colors and graphics on the machine that appear to be different than what should be expected, and paying attention to obscured or lack of flashing lights that are normally displayed on the machine.
  • Pay attention to anyone who appears to be loitering or otherwise hanging around a machine with no visible purpose. If this is the case, use a different machine, report the suspicious person to the business, and/or ensure that you are covering the PIN pad when typing in your PIN number.

Here are some things you can do if you’ve been impacted by skimmers or if you are concerned:

  • Change your PIN at one of our 4 branch ATM’s or at our Hazel Dell location
  • Regularly monitor credit card and account statements and look for discrepancies.

If you find any fraudulent activity on your account, please contact us immediately by calling 800-252-6525 or coming into any one of our 4 locations.

Below is an example of what an ATM skimmer may look like. The one on the right has the skimmer in place over the card reading slot.

ATM with card skimming device. People's Community Federal Credit Union serving Clark County WA talks about card skimmers.