METAIRIE – The Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office is warning shoppers about a new type of credit card skimming device that was recently found at a Westbank business.
The new device is designed to fit over a store’s existing card reader at the point of sale and record credit card information and PINs during a transaction.
Unwary customers could easily not notice the device, which closely mimics the appearance and functionality of legitimate card readers.
“These devices are placed on top of card reader, then later removed to have the information downloaded,” Lieutenant Jason Rivarde said in a press release. “The overlays are designed to fit over particular types of point of sale devices, and can be hard to notice. We are asking that when using one of these machines to please check that nothing has been added to the machine. The easiest method would be to pull on the top of the machine to see if it comes apart.”
Avoiding swiping credit cards altogether is the best defense, Rivarde said, and “chip” cards and readers are considered to be much more secure than standard swipe card readers.