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Being a radio DJ means keeping some odd hours. Over 25 years, I can't tell you how many times I've had to do something in the middle of the night that required going to the studio or to the broadcast tower itself. And during those nights, I've had more weirdo late-night experiences at gas stations than most, but thankfully I have never got my card caught in one of those skimmers that brainiacs like to stick inside the card readers.

Hijinks such as this are afoot and on the rise right here in the Crossroads. As you can see at the top of the page, the Victoria Police Department is reporting an increase in card skimmers found on gas pumps. They don't specify which locations in Victoria have had card skimmers discovered and or removed from their pumps, but you can consider this a reminder to look before you leap. Sometimes the locations are released a few days later after the police have had a chance to ask questions and follow up on any leads. If we can get that information we will update it here.

Some tips on safe payment mentioned in the comments section of their post include using your phone and the fuel providers app to pay for your gas and thus avoid using a card or the payment keypad altogether. You may also try using a credit card if you have to pay at a pump, and if your number is stolen at least it's not draining your bank account immediately (Go, Cathy Waldon). Crooks love to throw a bunch of these pump skimmers up ahead of a storm. They know you want to top off your tank and are in a hurry to do so.

Another tip, depending on your smartphone situation, is to use your phone to do a scan of sorts before you pay with your card. Use your phone to search for wifi right there at the pump. Sometimes you can spot the sneaky little network the crooks may be using to communicate with the card skimmer via a phone or tablet from nearby. Next pump, please.

Drive safe everyone!

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