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Why You Shouldn't Use a Debit Card at the Gas Pump

You may have heard about "skimming" which is a common scam in which thieves attach a device to credit card readers at places like gas stations to steal your credit card info. "Shimming" is a new update on this scam that enables fraudsters to steal your card's chip info when you insert the card into the reader (rather than swiping).

Criminals sell the stolen data or use it to buy things online. You won't know your information has been stolen until you get your statement or an overdraft notice.

Experts estimate that over $1 billion is stolen every year by criminals using card skimmers. Shimming is even more high-tech and will only add to that total.

This fraud has reported in every state in the country - from cities to rural areas.

Experts recommend when buying gas that you pay with a credit card rather than a debit card. The reason is simple, if your credit card information gets stolen, you are typically protected by your credit card company's zero-liability policy - so you don't lose any money.

If a scammer steals your debit card information, the money is usually withdrawn right away from your savings or checking account. Plus, you usually have to wait for the bank to complete an investigation which could take days or weeks until your money is refunded.

Credit cards can also potentially earn you rewards on gas purchases, depending on which one you use.



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