Kaitlyn Lowe thought she had no reason to be worried about having her credit card information stolen when she swipes at a gas pump.
"You always kind of shake it and check to see if there's something attached to it," she said.
But Hernando Co. Deputies say sophisticated skim artists hid skimming devices inside four gas pumps at the Hess station at Cortez Blvd. and Spring Lake Highway in Brooksville.
"The average customer is not going to have any idea that a skimmer like that is even present," said Hernando County Sheriff's Detective Tony Aguiar.
Hernando deputies say that between 6 p.m. Tuesday and 7:15 a.m. Wednesday, someone broke into the gas pumps.
"The locking mechanism on the pumps, they're not exactly the best locks," Aguiar said.
A manager only found the skimmers during a routine check for tampering.
"We haven't been able to process the devices to see how many credit card numbers are at the devices," Aguiar said.
With the little cord that you can't even see, skimmers can download your information in two ways.
They can get the device back from the gas pump and look at it then, or they can sit in a parking lot with a computer and watch as you swipe.
"The people who do these types of things, they're not amateurs, they're professional in what they do, they're smart, they're intelligent. They do this a lot," Aguiar said.
Deputies say anyone who used pumps numbered 1, 2, 7 and 8 Wednesday night or Thursday morning should immediately check their statements or get new cards.
Lowe has a word for the skim artists.
"Just don't do it, you don't know someone's situation. They could be living paycheck to paycheck, that's all the money they have," Lowe said.
Detectives say it's possible that this is only one of many stations these out-of-sight skimmers could have hit in recent days.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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