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American 1 Credit Union Go to main content

Skimmer Use on the Rise


Skimmers are illegal and malicious card readers attached to a payment terminal such as a gas station pump or an ATM. These small and sometimes nearly undetectable card readers steal the information from a card when it is swiped or inserted. Criminals then use the information to create copycat cards, purchase goods, or sell the card information to someone else. Here are a few proactive tips to use to help prevent you from becoming a victim of this common scam:

  • Examine the card reader closely – Does it look like something has been added to it? Does there appear to be an extra piece? Report anything on a reader that looks wrong.
  • Look for a security seal on your gas station pump - many gas stations use them as a way to prevent tampering.
  • Wiggle the reader before swiping or inserting your card to see if something is loose or comes off. If a skimmer has been added, the card reader may feel loose.
  • Check for any signs of tampering. If there appears to be tampering anywhere on the ATM or gas pump, or if things simply do not look right, do not use it and report your concern.
  • Never get comfortable with an ATM or gas pump that you use frequently – always take the time to look over the machine.
  • Review your account balances regularly using your mobile banking app. If you notice any unauthorized charges, contact American 1 or your other financial institution immediately to report it. You can also use your mobile app to temporarily shut off your card by selecting the menu, then “Card Controls,” and using the toggle switch to toggle off the card in question.

American 1 is dedicated to the security of our members and their account information. If you notice anything that seems wrong when using any payment device, don’t proceed. If possible report your concern to the owner of the store or institution, or call us at 1-888-213-2848.

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Federally Insured by NCUA. Equal Housing Opportunity. In compliance with the USA PATRIOT Act, we are required to obtain and verify identification provided for all new account owners and joint owners, using methods permitted by law.
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